WINTER 2015 Two Women Create a Bond at Rosie’s Place OMAM Gives Back at the Holidays Words and Photos from Our Annual Luncheon Ways to Get Involved This December
Our Wish List for School Uniforms Become a Friend for All Seasons
From left, Beverly and Norma
EVP | CHIEF TALENT OFFICER, OMAM Christopher Hadley is an Executive Vice President and the Chief Talent Officer at OMAM, a global asset management company. As head of Talent and a member of The OMAM Foundation, he is also responsible for encouraging and organizing the company’s 75 Boston-based employees’ volunteer efforts throughout Boston. Chris and OMAM have a longstanding relationship with Rosie’s Place, which is especially significant at holiday time. How does OMAM contribute to Rosie’s Place, and how is your holiday time here special? Rosie’s Place is one of OMAM’s top priorities in the community. In addition to providing financial support, we also sponsor employee donation drives, match employee gifts through our foundation, donate coffee mugs, attend and sponsor your fundraising events and provide hands-on help with employees volunteering onsite. We enjoy preparing and serving meals in the Dining Room and in the past we have provided gift sets for Rosie’s Place guests at holiday time. This year we held a drive to collect items and filled 150 Thanksgiving bags of food for families at (Rosie’s Place satellite office) Franklin Field. It was a great event for building teamwork and our employees really loved handing the bags out. (See Community of Friends, page 3.)
Two Women Find a New Start and a Dear Friendship at Rosie’s Place Norma and Beverly are sharing a laugh over lunch in the Rosie’s Place Dining Room. Laughter is something that comes more easily to them now because their lives are on the upswing. And because they’ve found each other.
as our Advocacy department assisted Beverly in applying for disability payments and Norma in seeking subsidized housing so she could move out of her market rate room. Beverly relied on our shelter as she worked to resolve her homelessness.
Beverly’s path literally crossed with Norma’s this spring when they met in the predawn hours at the Rosie’s Place running/walking group. Three times a week, at 6:30 a.m., our guests take part in exercise around the neighborhood. The two women, who are close in age, struck up a conversation immediately and were amazed at the many things they had in common.
“Trust is everything to me,” says Norma. “There’s always gossip, but I knew Beverly was a rare friend when I confided in her and she never repeated what I said.” Beverly adds, “I’m a little tougher than Norma and sometimes I see people who are trying to get over on her. I make sure no one takes advantage of her.”
“We just started talking about what we were going through and found we have very similar backgrounds,” says Beverly. “Norma helped me out right off the bat and we’ve been inseparable ever since.”
What are the benefits for your employees? We at OMAM are committed to giving people a chance to serve the larger community. Financial services provide a critical role in society by enabling savings and investment, risk protection and job creation. As important as these services are, at times they can seem a bit impersonal. When we work together in the Dining Room, it’s a meaningful way to increase our engagement and teamwork. It’s a chance for people who aren’t in the same departments to get to know each other a little more. We really value humor and fun!
Norma had started coming to Rosie’s Place earlier this year as she worked to heal from addiction and a nervous breakdown. Beverly had recently been evicted–illegally–from the East Boston apartment she shared with her 12-yearold granddaughter, Justice. When they were put out, Justice found placement in a residential program for adolescents with mental health issues and Beverly got a bed in our Overnight shelter, knowing she would be safe in a place where she had received help so many times before.
What is it about Rosie’s Place that keeps the relationship with OMAM growing after 12 years? Rosie’s Place is an extremely well-run organization. Quite frankly, some organizations have one formula that they repeat year in and out. Rosie’s Place has an ever-expanding depth and breadth of programs and solutions. Problems are approached and solved with creativity, and the team at Rosie’s Place is always developing and implementing new ideas. I think in part because they do not accept any government funding, they have the freedom and the necessity to continue to innovate. Everyone I’ve encountered at Rosie’s Place is incredibly dedicated and engaged. My sense is that we are culturally very similar. OMAM, too, is always looking to innovate, and our employees are certainly dedicated.
Through sharing their histories, the two women found understanding and support. Both women had their first babies at age 16; Norma went on to have two more children and Beverly had one. Both women have worked from a very young age and were striving to finish their bachelor’s degrees. They both struggled with bad relationships, depression and substance abuse. And they both knew they were ready to move forward with positivity and hope. Norma came to Beverly’s aid when a former boyfriend stalked her at Rosie’s Place. “He was trying to chase her up the ramp and I helped her to be strong and get him to stay away from her,” remembers Norma. She invited Beverly to stay with her when her first 21 days in our Overnight program ended. They started eating together in the Dining Room, enrolled in smoking cessation and other classes here and continued in the walking group. They gave each other encouragement
Bright days ahead As Norma works to rebuild her life, sobriety has been a large component of her progress. She credits in part a Christian church in Jamaica Plain she recently joined and, of course, she has invited Beverly to come along. “I was happy to go because I am grateful for my Rosie’s Place community and wanted to thank God,” says Beverly. They were both baptized recently and have found a second community through Bible study and Sunday services. “I’m a work in progress,” says Beverly. “We both are.” Good things surely are happening for Norma and Beverly, none more amazing than the phone calls they received on the same day. Norma learned that an affordable one-bedroom apartment in Dorchester would be available October 1, and Beverly was told she would be moving into a new apartment in Chelsea by the holidays. One of Rosie’s Place’s stabilization workers will meet with Beverly monthly now that she is housed and is helping her get settled with furniture and other household items. Knowing she will be reunited with Justice by Christmas is the best present Beverly could receive. Norma has stayed close to her family in the area and, on Thanksgiving, one more place–for Beverly–was set at their table. Norma says her life is richer with a close friend. “It’s important to know you’re not alone,” she says. “Beverly has become the sister I never had. She keeps me going, and you need that sort of friend.” Beverly agrees with a loud “yes!” and they both laugh again.
Our Executive Director on our Mission and Vision Dear Friends: Often, it’s the little things that conspire to pull our guests down into hunger and homelessness. Higher gas prices? For some of our women, that means the end of their ability to commute to a job beyond the reach of public transportation. Higher food prices? A weekly visit to the grocery store becomes a monthly one. School vacation? Without school lunch and breakfast, the kids are home and hungry. A welcome growth spurt for a teenager means shoes that no longer fit and a coat whose sleeves are three inches short of his wrists. A wedding or a funeral means scrounging for a gift or decent clothes. In the best of times, our guests work hard to make ends meet; in the meaner times, they count on Rosie’s Place even more. From food programs like our Dining Room and Food Pantry to material assistance and advice provided through our Overnight, Advocacy and Outreach programs, we aim to help women meet their biggest needs, right now. Our Women’s Education Center, Self Advocacy and Legal programs work with women around longer-term needs, to escape the constant deprivation many of our guests face. Rosie’s Place knows that we must continue providing services our guests depend on, as well as expand and adapt these services to meet our guests’ needs. In the midst of an ambitious strategic plan, we’ve sent teams of skilled advocates, lawyers and housing and job search workers to assist women living in public housing or whose children attend public school. We’ve expanded our Outreach team to include a staffer who solely focuses on our guests with serious chronic medical conditions. Our new offices in Dudley Square provide us with the room to grow in our Legal and Arts programs. We’ve truly begun to realize our vision that Rosie’s Place services are available to any poor or homeless woman– whether she crosses our threshold on Harrison Avenue or not. Kip’s vision of a world where all our sisters could find respite and refuge has gotten a little clearer–and we hope a little closer.
oliday S 5 Ways to Give This H
Back Bay Winter Twilight by Sam Vokey
Every holiday season brings more women in need, both at Rosie’s Place and in our community. We make a special effort at this time to reach out to often forgotten women to provide them with warmth and comfort. Here are some ways you can help us brighten the season for our guests: 1. COLLECT NEEDED HOLIDAY ITEMS Coordinate an effort with your workplace, school or family to collect holiday gifts for our guests. For more information, visit www.rosiesplace.org/drives. Our most-needed items include: • $25 gift cards (CVS, Walgreens, Target, Payless, Old Navy) • Bath and body gift sets with lotion, body wash and body spray • Sets of hats, scarves and gloves • Pajamas, slippers and robes • Blankets and throws • Sheets (twin and full size) • Watches and rolling backpacks • Gift bags, wrapping paper, ribbons and tape
2. CATER A MEAL IN OUR DINING ROOM Gather a group of up to 10 coworkers or friends to prepare and serve a meal for 150 to 200 women. Underwrite the $350 cost for the entire meal by splitting the donation up among your group or finding a sponsor (such as your employer or church) to support you. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to get started. 3. SEND CUSTOMIZED HOLIDAY CARDS Our 10-packs ($18), variety packs ($24) and custom orders of 50+ are available in six designs. Our newest card, Back Bay Winter Twilight, by acclaimed local artist Sam Vokey, adds another timeless Boston winter image to our collection. View designs and order at www.rosiesplace. org/holidaycards. 4. BENEFIT ROSIE’S PLACE WITH AN EVENT Consider making Rosie’s Place the beneficiary of your community event or holiday gathering. To organize a drive for food, coats and other winter essentials or holiday gifts, contact email@example.com. 5. DONATE TO ROSIE’S PLACE Visit www.rosiesplace.org/give to support our vital programs and services for 12,000 women each year with a one-time gift or monthly donation that funds our work year-round!
It’s said we make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. By supporting Rosie’s Place and our guests– through your gifts of time, energy and talent, your financial gifts, your fond wishes and your steadfast commitment–you are making a life that’s larger by the moment. You have our great thanks for joining us in our efforts to alleviate suffering and craft solutions for poor and homeless women. We hope with all our hearts that the coming year is the best ever for you and those you love. Happy holidays!
“For me this is a really good day…and I am grateful. This is not my worst day. This is not the day I carried that bag of drug money. And this is not the day I was sentenced to prison or the day I started doing time, because those were really bad days… What I want for the women at Rosie’s Place and frankly for all of you—is for us to be judged by our best days and not only by our worst days—for us to be recognized for the best things we’re capable of going forward.”
Piper Kerman, author of Orange Is the New Black, sharing what she learned from her experience in prison, excerpted from the keynote speech she gave at the 2015 Funny Women…Serious Business luncheon.
Rosie’s Place accepts no government
funds and relies instead on committed supporters like you!
“If you haven’t been there, I’m telling you, you don’t have to go there only on Christmas and Thanksgiving. Go there any day of the week, sit down there, serve lunch and see the remarkable work that they do.” Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh, encouraging the 1,700 attendees at Funny Women…Serious Business to volunteer at Rosie’s Place.
ROSIE’S PLACE NEWS is published three times a year to inform our friends about activities and events taking place throughout the Rosie’s Place community. OUR MISSION is to provide a safe and nurturing environment to help poor and homeless women to maintain their dignity, seek opportunity, and find security in their lives.
Executive Director Sue Marsh Director of Development Leemarie Mosca Director of Communications | Editor Michele Chausse Communications Coordinator | Contributor Cara Rotschafer Design Colette O’Neill
“Rosie’s Place is giving me all that I need to make me move forward…I am an orphan that comes to a lady’s house. She has food, she has things to do. She comfort me, she make me feel warm and happy…and strong. I become different.”
We’d love to hear from you! Please contact us with your comments at 617.318.0210.
Lucy N., a guest whose story of escaping abuse in Central
Africa was shown at the Funny Women…Serious Business luncheon, speaking about the difference Rosie’s Place has made in her life.
Our annual Funny Women…Serious Business luncheon was a smashing success, raising a record-breaking $650,000– almost 10% more than in 2014! Thanks go to the 1,700 attendees, table hosts and sponsors, especially Headlining Sponsors Bank of America, Boston Interiors, Eastern Bank and OMAM and Presenting Centerpiece Sponsor Neiman Marcus Natick. The remarkable women who added so much to the program are, from left, Sara Underwood, Fox25; Massachusetts First Lady Lauren Baker; co-emcee Karen Holmes Ward, WCVB 5; Rosie’s Place Executive Director Sue Marsh; featured speaker, author Piper Kerman; co-emcee Susan Wornick; Latoyia Edwards, NECN; and Kim Khazei, WHDH 7. Also participating in the program were Boston City Councilor-At-Large and Rosie’s Place board member Michelle Wu and U.S. Senator for Massachusetts Elizabeth Warren, who delivered her remarks via video from Washington, D.C.
Did K ? You
Rosie’s Place staff and guests mobilized this fall to support the Massachusetts Fair Share Amendment, gathering more than 600 signatures from staff, board, guests, volunteers and supporters. After attending trainings, guests and staff collected signatures outside the Massachusetts Avenue T stop twice this fall. This proposed constitutional amendment would tax the state’s highest earners at a fairer rate and generate more revenue for public education and transportation. Rosie’s Place is offering a $40,000 fellowship to a woman who has new ideas, talent and energy. The Kip Tiernan Social Justice Fellowship is awarded annually for an independent and innovative project in the New England area that will improve the lives of poor and homeless women. Informational sessions are in January and concept papers are due February 8, 2016. The Fellowship is awarded in spring 2016. Visit rosiesplace.org/fellowship for more information.
State and City of Boston elected officials lent their support to the work of Rosie’s Place at the Funny Women…Serious Business luncheon on October 27. From left, Massachusetts First Lady Lauren Baker, Governor Charlie Baker, Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito, Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh and his partner Lorrie Higgins.
The staff at Salon Mario Russo gathered before cutting and styling the hair of 65 women on Sunday, October 18 at the 7th annual Renew You event to benefit Rosie’s Place. Thanks to event founders Lisa Donovan of Kiss 108 and Mario Russo, more than $5,000 was raised to support vital services for our guests.
Thanks to OMAM employees, Thanksgiving celebrations were a bit warmer this year for families at Rosie’s Place’s satellite office at the Franklin Field public housing development. OMAM staff filled 150 shopping bags with Thanksgiving food items and, at a Thanksgiving party on November 12, employees, from left, Craig Mellin, Hahn Lin, Mark Pietkiewicz, Jenny Souza, Erin Montgomery and Michele Truhe distributed them to supplement the holiday meal of the predominantly woman-headed families who live there.
Newly-elected Boston City Councilor Andrea Joy Campbell was one of eight City Council candidates who visited Rosie’s Place before the November 3 election. In addition to speaking about her priorities and answering questions from guests, Councilor Campbell recalled coming to Rosie’s Place’s Dining Room with her grandmother as a child.
Megan Polli, Rachel Huff and Ellen Gager, from left, were among the Friends of Rosie’s Place who enjoyed a Fall Night Out at Harpoon Brewery on September 29. Guests sampled a variety of beer, as well as seasonal ice cream flavors from Honeycomb Creamery and organic chips from Late July, all while learning more about Rosie’s Place and our programs and services.
In September, local sororities and fraternities took part in a Serve in September competition developed by the Volunteer Services department to encourage college students to help out in the Dining Room. Theta Phi Alpha at Suffolk University provided the most service, with 26 hours. Brianna Silva, Theta Phi Alpha Philanthropy Chair, says the sorority has been giving back to Rosie’s Place for years through volunteering and coordinating drives. “We chose to volunteer at Rosie’s Place because, just like our national efforts, they help those in need, especially those who may be homeless or struggling through finances and other obstacles of life,” she says. This year, Rosie’s Place took part in National Hunger and Homelessness Week, November 14 – 22, and engaged guests and supporters in activities to raise awareness of these issues and to challenge stereotypes. Guests worked with storyteller Lani Peterson to craft short talks about the “before and after” of difficult periods in their lives. Two guests joined Self-Advocacy Manager Davida Ginsberg as speakers at an event organized by a team of five students at Boston University designed to “Redefine Homelessness.” In addition, throughout the week Rosie’s Place shared guests’ written and videotaped stories through our website and social media.
winter WISH LIST
RESOLVE TO BECOME A FRIEND FOR ALL SEASONS
IN 2016 Make it your New Year’s resolution to support Rosie’s Place all year through our monthly giving program, Friends for All Seasons. This is an easy and convenient way to give yearround with scheduled credit card or checking account payments. Your minimum monthly gift of $15 provides steady and dependable funding that enables us to better meet the needs of our guests. Other benefits of monthly giving include:
Many of the parents in the Boston school system are similar to our guests: single moms, unor under employed, struggling with housing, food and utility bills. In response, Rosie’s Place has placed full-time staff at four Boston public elementary and middle schools–the Orchard Gardens, Holmes, Shaw and Blackstone Innovation Schools—to help. All of these schools require uniforms, and we have found that many students may only have one set of clothes to last them from week to week and season to season. We have launched an initiative to provide school uniforms to kids in need, and ask for your help with donations of new or gently-used: • Long-sleeved polos, shirts and sweaters in dark green, yellow, light blue and dark blue • Pants, skirts, jumpers and cardigans in navy and khaki • Hat, gloves and mittens for children and adults • Children’s coats Parents: Do you have a child enrolled
*Youth sizes 4-16. Uniforms can be found at L&M Bargain, Old Navy, Target and Walmart. Or send us a gift card and we’ll do the shopping!
at a private or public school that has uniforms? This is a great opportunity to
Please contact Community Collaborative Manager Tenisha Daluz at firstname.lastname@example.org or 617.318.0264 for more information. We thank you!
donate the clothing they have outgrown!
WBUR’s A Christmas Carol
Tuesday, December 15, 2015, 7:00PM Omni Parker House, Boston
DATE SAVE THE
This year marks the 13th anniversary of WBUR 90.9 FM’s reading of the Charles Dickens’ classic, A Christmas Carol. You will hear your favorite WBUR personalities bring this timeless tale to life at Boston’s historic Omni Parker House, the site of Dickens’ first reading. Tickets are $60 and all proceeds benefit Rosie’s Place. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit rosiesplace.org/wbur.
Administrative costs are reduced, allowing your gift to have more of an impact You will be kept up-to-date on our work through the Rosie’s Place newsletter and invitations to special events but will not receive any other requests for support You will receive one tax receipt in January summarizing your giving for the year You will be able to give at a level over a 12-month period that you may not have thought possible as a one-time donation
Become a Friend for All Seasons Today! Online: www.rosiesplace.org/fas Phone: Katie Amoro at 617.318.0211 Mail: Provide your credit card information or a check in enclosed envelope and mark to make your gift a monthly donation.
Rosie’s Place Annual Meeting
Safe and Sound Gala
Save the Date for our Annual Meeting breakfast. The featured speaker will be Mario Russo, the creative force behind Salon Mario Russo, who will share keys to his success as his Newbury Street-based salon celebrates its 25th anniversary. For more information, please contact Kristen Leonard at email@example.com or 617.318.0232.
Please be our guest for a special evening of food, friends and philanthropy at our annual Safe and Sound gala. Enjoy delectable cuisine prepared and served by celebrity chefs with fine wine pairings—and the chance to win unique insider-only auction packages. Sponsorships are available and tickets begin at $500. For more information, please contact Katie Amoro at 617.318.0211 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thursday, March 3, 2016, 7:30AM Taj Boston
Wednesday, May 4, 2016 Cruiseport Boston’s Black Falcon Terminal
www.rosiesplace.org 889 Harrison Avenue Boston, MA 02118
NON-PROFIT ORG. US POSTAGE PAID BOSTON, MA PERMIT NO. 14526