Remembering Field of Dreams

By Madeline Eleazar

FOD 2015 Volunteers          FOD 2015 Fenway Park

Few ballparks in America evoke the same feelings of historic significance, legacy and passion that Fenway Park does when one catches a summertime game. But recently some lucky players and volunteers got to experience those feelings and much more; a chance to attend and participate in ABCD’s 18th annual Field of Dreams event, where they had the opportunity to walk and play on the coveted turf, explore the Green Monster, shake hands with Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, and most importantly, help raise crucial funding to ABCD’s SummerWorks Program.

Held on a sunny Wednesday on June 10th, the event’s goal is to raise money for the SummerWorks Program, which provides summer jobs for over 1000 low-income city-youth, ages 14-21.  During SummerWorks, teens learn valuable skills pertaining to job-readiness, financial literacy, responsibility and career exploration.  This year, ABCD and its participating company sponsored teams hit a grand slam that even “Big Papi” David Ortiz would envy, by raising a record $335,000!  Not only are the sponsors to be applauded, but also the dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers that helped make the day a success.

Eager and knowledgeable volunteers helped by keeping “the book” for each team at play, ushering players from the locker rooms to their respective dugouts and by signing in guests and spectators alike in the main ballpark entrance.  It’s because of the support and assistance of ABCD’s volunteers that Field of Dreams and similar events are successful.

Everyone at ABCD would like to thank the Fenway Park staff, its Field of Dreams company-sponsored teams, and the volunteers for such an exciting and successful day!

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A Special Message from our Senior Executives

Our volunteers are an intrinsic part of our organization. From tutoring to financial coaching to mentoring, they empower low-income Massachusetts residents to achieve their full potential. Thanks to our volunteers, we’re able to do more than we ever thought possible. In Dorchester, a Foster Grandparent is teaching a young child how to read. In Brighton, a volunteer is mentoring a 16-year-old participant in WorkSMART, an innovative ABCD program that gives low income youngsters the support they need to stay in school and learn vital job skills. A few miles away, a volunteer is helping an elderly woman complete the paperwork for fuel assistance this winter – so she can stay warm.

More than 2,000 people volunteer their time, energy, and expertise to ABCD and the people we serve. In fact, last year alone, our volunteers donated over 50,000 hours to help advance our mission.

Our volunteers partner with ABCD for so many reasons: “I volunteer because I want to serve and give back to my community,” says Carla Coutinho, a UMass Nursing Intern at Parker Hill Head Start. While Sarah Ianno, a Bunker Hill Community College Intern at the East Boston APAC, volunteers because she “loves helping people and learning valuable information.”

Whatever the reason, we are so grateful for their support. In the pages of this newsletter, you’ll read about the powerful impact they make in the Boston and Mystic Valley area. For example, in June, ABCD volunteers played a critical role in our 18th annual Field of Dreams event at Fenway Park. With their help, we raised $335,000 to fund our SummerWorks Program, which provides summer jobs for more than 1,000 low-income youth.

In addition to the dedication they show at work, our employees also donate their time after hours. This summer, you could find them at the Blue Hills Bank Pavilion raising awareness about the needs of low income individuals in Boston, Malden, Everett, and Medford.

If you’re interested in volunteering, we encourage you to take a look at our individual and group opportunities and contact us at volunteer@bostonabcd.org. Because of the generous support of our volunteers, we’re able to help thousands of individuals gain the skills and confidence they need to build better lives.

Sincerely,

John Drew Headshot                                                 Sharon Scott-Chandler Headshot

John J. Drew                                                             Sharon Scott-Chandler

President/CEO                                                          Executive Vice President