Letters to the Editor 4-23-2021

Thank you to all who made skating possible this year

To the Editor,

The Kelly Rink is a beloved community resource — and one that was especially important during this COVID winter!  We want to thank the community sponsors and local elected officials whose support of community skating and the Friends of the Kelly Rink made skating possible this year.

Boston Building Resources

BWH Brookside Community Health Center

City Feed and Supply

East Boston Savings Bank

Franklin Park Zoo

Hatoffs Gas Station

Knights of Columbus — 120 Jamaica Plain

Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation

Mann & Rodgers Funeral Home

Morrison’s Auto-Rite Inc.

BWH Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center

Stanley’s Towing Service

The Power Company Inc.

Urban Edge Housing Corporation

Yumont True Value Hardware

State Representative Liz Malia

Clerk Magistrate of Suffolk County Maura Hennigan

Boston City Councillor Matt O’Malley

This was a year of exceptional challenges.  In 2020, the founding members of the Friends of the Kelly Rink passed the baton to a new generation of leaders.  As we stepped in to support the future of ice skating in Jamaica Plain and Roxbury, we never imagined that we would do so in the middle of a global pandemic.  Long-established practices and expectations had to change, adapting to the realities of a COVID context.  

With a focus on equity and sustained community access, the Kelly Rink played a unique role this past winter.  Across the state and across Boston, the Kelly Rink was one of just a handful of rinks that are open for public recreational skating.  The Friends of the Kelly worked closely with DCR to create a COVID-safe skating environment, with special precautions around skate rentals and skate lessons.

The response was stunning.

Every day of the week, every skating session was at maximum capacity, with lines forming up to an hour beforehand.  Continued access to the ice and affordable rental skates offered a rare, invaluable resource to the Jamaica Plain and Roxbury communities – safe physical activity in the middle of a pandemic.

We are proud that we were able to keep the Kelly Rink skate rental and lessons open this winter, and could not have done it without the help of the JP and Roxbury communities.  Your support ensures that local families – of all backgrounds, at all income levels – have access to the joy and challenge of ice skating.  Thank you for making this possible! 

Because everyone should be able to ice skate.

Yours Truly,
The Friends of the Kelly Rink
Kimberly Rand, President
Ashley Rao, Vice President
Kristine Santiago, Treasurer
Caroline Ballou, Secretary
Adam Marks
Rick McLean
Trevor Schroeder

Monteiro running for Council at-large

To the Editor,

My name is Carla B. Monteiro and I’m running for Boston City Council At-Large. My story is the story of so many Boston families, one of struggle and rising above it.

My parents emigrated from Cabo Verde in 1979. As the daughter of immigrants, my family, like so many others across Boston, struggled to navigate language barriers in our daily lives. At age 4, my father walked out on us and we were evicted. I was too young to fully understand what was happening, but, in so many ways, that day would form the rest of my journey.

As a 16-year-old, I dreamed of buying a house in Boston and moving my family in to protect all of us from housing insecurity. Eventually, I transformed my dream of owning a home into a reality and at 28 I purchased a triple-decker in Dorchester to provide a home for my family and create a stable foundation for my son, Mesiah.

As a social worker, I know families and our youth are struggling to navigate Boston’s social safety net just as I did.

As one of my many jobs, I am an emergency psychiatric social worker at Boston Children’s Hospital where I provide therapeutic support to our youth. Every weekend, we are flooded with young people who are experiencing symptoms of depression and anxiety and need help. When COVID-19, hit I collaborated with other community leaders, elected officials, and institutions to gather masks, hand sanitizer, and hot food then went door to door across the city delivering them to our elders and those most vulnerable. Many times the people who need support must struggle the most to find resources.

Even before the pandemic hit, the systems meant to meet our basic needs to survive were failing us. I’m running for City Council to use my experience to ensure every Bostonian has what they need to thrive. In this period of healing and recovery, our City Council needs a social worker, one who knows how to put services in place for the people. I know what it takes to help our families and children be successful.

I know that Boston’s families are struggling because I have lived that struggle and see the consequences of the gaps in our social services daily. But the reality is this: We can achieve a Boston where everyone’s basic needs are met if we’re bold enough to imagine it and passionate enough to fight for it. Join our neighborhood by neighborhood movement at CarlaForBoston.com

Carla B. Monteiro 
Candidate, Council at-large

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