APRIL 2020 NEWSLETTER

CONTACT CSTO:

OFFICE HOURS

Monday-Friday 9:30am-5pm

476 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02116                         

Phone: (617) 357-8548

Fax: (617) 357-8505

Website: www.cstoboston.org

facebook.com/cstoboston

twitter.com/cstoboston

LONGWOOD SECURITY:

(617) 436-4600

WINN MANAGEMENT OFFICE:

(617) 426-5517

In an effort to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 and to protect the health and safety of our residents, staff, and the children and families served by our programs, CSTO closed its offices, the Square Tech Repair Center and the Community Center on Tuesday, March 17, 2020. We will re-open when the Mayor and the Governor lift restrictions.


In the meantime, our program staff at Square Roots, Teen Programs and the Square Tech Training continue to engage our youth and support their academic learning by holding online classes.


The CSTO Board and executive staff are also working closely with Winn Residential to ensure our residents have access to the service and support they need at this time. We are also working diligently on refinancing Castle Square and the Eva White purchase, and once those are complete, we will be able to fund the much needed repairs and enhancements to both properties that would improve residents’ quality of life.


Even though our senior activities are cancelled temporarily, CSTO staff regularly conducts wellness checks over the phone with our seniors upon request. Seniors at Castle Square and Eva White who wish to receive a wellness call, please contact Xiaoping Wang at 617-357-8548 extension 202 and leave a message on her voicemail, she will call you back.


Stay Safe and Well


Deborah Backus

Executive Director

Square Roots Program

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle & Conserve!

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We always encourage our staff to bring their passions to work. Thi Tran, the Program Coordinator of the Square Roots K-8 Program, earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Natural Resources Conservation and wanted to share her appreciation for sustainability and being environmentally conscious. With an opportunity for direct service, she developed a lesson where the youth can bring their creativity and learn about the 3 R’s and C. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Conserve!

 

A short ice breaker later, youth debated with staff and each other about which items would go into which category including the landfill. With each item that was brought up, youth found a way to reuse the resource. For example, a soup can is able to turn into a soil container for plants.

 

The eighteen youth who participated in our February Vacation week began their journey of turning past Square Roots T-Shirts into reusable cloth bags. With their T-shirt bags in hand, youth were already what to use their bag for - lunch, snacks, gym wear, discussing and the possibilities were endless! We can’t wait to see what other ways the youth will use what they learned about Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, and Conserve!

Square Roots Summer Enrollment

This summer will be filled with learning through academically focused workshops, enrichment/recreation activities, and field trips. The goal is to prevent summer learning loss and create a fun and nurturing space for youth to connect, build, and learn.

 

The program will run Monday, July 6th through Friday, August 14th, 9:00am to 5:00pm.

 

Families interested in enrolling a child, please contact Thi Tran, Square Roots Program Coordinator at ttran@cstoboston.org to make an appointment.

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Media Makers Take a Seat at the Table

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During the month of February, the Media Makers program explored those who fought for justice and equity within their communities. Starting with understanding the history of Black Americans and the important moments from the Civil Rights Movement, the Media Makers researched individual activists that leveraged their voice, status, and power to help others. Then, our Media Makers created digital portraits of their chosen activist which they turned into stickers that were shared within our community.

"Today, we chose to uplift and highlight those who have always fought against the struggle, but we need to acknowledge that for millions of Americans, the struggle is not over. "Nayeli De Leon, a high school Junior states during the culmination of their hard work, a performance art piece created by the Media Makers, titled A Seat at the Table. "if the struggle is not over, it means that we need to come together to fight against it. If we come together to collaborate, we can find solutions that make this country a place where regardless of your background, you are seen and you are appreciated. In order to do so though, we need to get more diverse people to have a seat at the table."Mo’mo Nobles Jr., a high school Senior, follows up during the performance. To learn more about the CSTO Media Makers, please visitwww.cstoboston.org/Teen-Program or reach out to Madeline Muhlberg, Program Manager, atmmuhlberg@cstoboston.org

Square Tech Training Program

The Square Tech Training Programs create opportunities and environments where young people can find, appreciate, and develop their creativity and genius. By introducing young people to technology through project-based workshops and partnership collaborations, they have opportunities to explore their area(s) of interest like PC Hardware, Networking, Computer Science and Business Development.

 

Due to the coronavirus, Square Tech has moved to online classes until May.

 

Young people are currently working on projects reflecting what they learned in their respective modules and will showcase these at the end of our school year celebration in May.

Square Tech Summer Opportunities

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Summer is right around the corner and Square Tech is looking for young people between the ages of 14 - 19 who want to learn from a team of dedicated IT professionals. This summer, young people can learn valuable skills such as game design, Makey Makey and PC hardware! There will be field trips exploring the tech field in Boston.

 

Are you interested in learning about technology and making a change within your community? Square Tech Program application will open March 31stcan be completed online atwww.cstoboston.org/square-tech. To learn more, please contact Square Tech Training and Senior IT Administrative Services Manager, Irene Matos Chan atichan@cstoboston.org.

Chinese Calligraphy Workshop

Chinese calligraphy is one of the oldest and most revered art forms in China. Studying Chinese calligraphy is a mental exercise that coordinates the mind and the body. It is a relaxing yet highly disciplined form of exercise that can strengthen one’s physical and spiritual well-being. Instructed by our beloved senior resident and volunteer Mr. Zhuo Wang Chen, this year’s CSTO Calligraphy workshop series ran from February to March. Participants learned how to properly hold the Chinese writing brush and were introduced to basic calligraphy strokes and writing large Chinese characters. The workshop series culminated in participants writing traditional Spring Festival couplets to express their celebratory spirit and good wishes for Black History Month and Lunar New Year. Anyone interested in learning Chinese calligraphy or joining our future calligraphy workshops please contact CSTO Community Coordinator, Xiaoping Wang at 617-357-8548.

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Chronic Pain Self - Management & Chair Exercise

Castle Square Tenants Organization and the community health education network, Enhance Asian Community on Health, invite you to join us for a 6-week workshop that will be held at the Castle Square Community Center 2nd Floor. If you are interested, please call the CSTO office at 617-357-8548. This workshop will focus on:

  • Control your pain

  • Management frustration, fatigue, isolation and poor sleep

  • Eat Well

  • Start an exercise program

  • Depression Management

  • Increase your energy level