What’s Happening at Hall: May 2021

What’s Happening at Hall: May 2021

It’s been another busy month here at Hall Neighborhood House!

One of the highlights was hosting Senator Richard Blumenthal for a visit and tour of our facilities. We showed him our best-in-class preschool programs and shared how we work to enhance quality of life for seniors in the community. His visit was even featured on News 12—so make sure to take a look at the segment!

We have also been busy providing hundreds of COVID-19 vaccinations each day through our partnership with Optimus Health, expanding caregiver support programs, and preparing for youth summer camp.

Thank you for being part of the Hall Neighborhood House community!

Dance and yoga for preschoolers

Thanks to support from the Kirby Foundation, we recently began leading weekly yoga and dance classes for our preschoolers. Every week, these young leaders have an opportunity to express themselves through movement—and get a bit of energy out in the middle of the day! We love seeing how excited they are to play and learn together, and we are so grateful to add this special activity to their schedules.

Welcoming spring with a new garden

The Trumbull Rotary graciously provided us with four new raised garden beds and came to Hall Neighborhood House to install them. Raised beds are accessible to those with limited mobility, so we are very excited that our children and seniors will have the opportunity to garden together! The beds are also equipped with an innovative underground watering system.

Thank you to Trumbull Rotary for installing the beds, and thank you to Bartlett Tree Experts for donating mulch for around the gardens!

Cooking classes with BarTaco

Our community partners at BarTaco taught students how to make a variety of nutritious, delicious recipes—including brown rice bowls and tacos. The cooking classes emphasized skills like reading recipes, making meals, and fueling our bodies with healthy foods. Thank you to Chef Luis Nunez, Christopher Messina, and Scott Lawton, BarTaco CEO and Cofounder!

Expanding senior spaces

Our seniors have a passion for play—and nothing brings out their competitiveness like an afternoon of BINGO. We’ve added a senior game room downstairs at Hall Neighborhood House—a place where seniors can play games, do activities, or just enjoy spending time together. We continue to be on the lookout for ways we can add new services and opportunities to benefit our neighbors.

Vaccinating our community

We are proud to be a COVID-19 vaccination center for Bridgeport, and we have been working hard to expand community access to the vaccine. We are now able to administer over 250 vaccines a day on-site, in partnership with Optimus Health! We continue to do our part to help keep our neighbors safe and healthy.
More support for caregivers

We now offer individual and group counseling for caregivers of seniors to help caregivers navigate available resources, guide decisions, and offer support during difficult times. Individual sessions can be scheduled at your convenience, and group sessions meet 2-4 times a year.

More support for caregivers

We now offer individual and group counseling for caregivers of seniors to help caregivers navigate available resources, guide decisions, and offer support during difficult times. Individual sessions can be scheduled at your convenience, and group sessions meet 2-4 times a year.

We Keep Getting Better

We Keep Getting Better

Our core values drive everything we do at Hall Neighborhood House. They keep us focused, drive our decisions, and help us serve our community. As a team, we’re constantly setting and reaching ambitious goals—because we aim to keep getting better.

We always look for ways to improve our programs and our neighborhood, starting with ourselves and our relationships. Our commitment to lifelong learning is something we take very seriously.

Here’s how we pursue meaningful growth:

We use purposeful metrics.

Our values are our guiding light. They shape what we do and why we do it. But we believe measurable impact matters, too. At Hall Neighborhood House, we keep track of our progress so that we can keep getting better.

Each year at Hall Neighborhood House we serve:

  • Over 250 infants, toddlers, and preschoolers
  • Over 500 youth (through after school programs, summer camp, activities with local schools, sports, music programs, and more)
  • Over 100 senior citizens

During the pandemic, we also delivered over 2,000 bags of groceries and over 400 meals delivered to senior citizens.

Measuring impact means more than numbers. We want to ensure that no matter the number of neighbors we’re serving, we’re offering the highest quality programs possible. That’s why our childcare programs are accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and meet all criteria set by the Office of Early Childhood in the Connecticut Early Learning and Development Standards (ELDS).

“Hall’s model is responsive to our community’s needs and incredibly effective,” Board Chair Carol Donnelly shared.

We keep measuring, keep listening, and keep growing the way our neighbors need us to.

We commit to lifelong learning.

Our unique intergenerational model allows us to emphasize learning at all ages. We all have something to teach one another—and we learn just as much from the vibrant youth in our programs as we do from the decades of experience our seniors share with us. We stay open to new opportunities—because you never know who might have the next great idea.

At Hall Neighborhood House, we encourage lifelong learning by making sure everyone has a safe place to learn and grow. We build a social, emotional, and academic foundation for young children and students to equip them to follow their dreams as they grow up, and we provide opportunities for adults to keep learning, too.

Our team commits to the same principle of lifelong learning. Supporting personal and professional development for our staff is a key part of our goal to keep getting better. We encourage our staff to invest in themselves and our community through training, networking, and continuing education. Our Board of Directors upholds the same values. They are experienced, excited members of our community who are passionate about Hall Neighborhood House’s potential.

We invest in community partnerships.

We know that we can go further together—and investing in community partnerships allows us to provide more services at a manageable scale.

For example, our community health center, Community Health at Hall, is staffed with practitioners five days a week thanks to our partnership with Optimus Health. Soon, we’ll expand our offerings to include behavioral health services and dental treatment, thanks to additional community partners.

Board Member Andrea Canuel is part of the team that is leading us into an expansive new season of partnerships. “There’s so much opportunity to expand Hall’s range of partners, and I’m thrilled to drive us forward as we continue to expand our community presence,” she said.

We keep getting better, and together we can make life better. 

We are so excited to take advantage of this momentum to keep getting better by pursuing big dreams for Hall Neighborhood House’s future. Be a part of our season of growth by supporting our mission!

We Believe in People

We Believe in People

At Hall Neighborhood House, all of our programs are driven by a core set of values. These central tenets of our community drive our actions and our relationships—and one of the values that motivates us most is that we Believe in People. At Hall, we look for the best in people, regardless of their circumstances. We operate like a family and believe that everyone has value. 

Everyone in our organization shares this mindset—from board members to staff, teachers, leadership, and anyone who works on our behalf. Our goal is for everyone who walks through our doors to feel like family.

Our emphasis on family is also how we build community across generations—children, families, adults, and seniors come together to form the Hall Neighborhood House community, and everyone is welcome here. 

Our values guide every decision we make at Hall Neighborhood House. When we say we believe in people, here’s what we mean: 

At Hall, We Listen and Adapt

We make it a point to be responsive to the unique needs of our community—whether that’s adding new programs or tweaking old ones. 

We opened our health center in response to neighbors’ needs, and we are now one of the only youth, childcare, and senior centers in the area to offer on-site medical care. We have practitioners from Optimus Health on-site five days a week providing physicals, immunizations, and ongoing healthcare. We listened to our community’s concerns and took action–but we’re not stopping here. In the coming months, we will add dental, vision, and behavioral health services to the health center. 

We Invest in Programs Proven to Make Life Better

Hall Neighborhood House provides comprehensive, accredited childcare and preschool programs, because all children deserve opportunities to learn using proven techniques. In our classrooms, children learn from child development experts and teaching professionals.  

For seniors, we know that nutrition has a huge impact on quality of life, especially for those over age 65, so we provide nutritious meals every day at our Senior Center

And we’re excited to provide preventative healthcare, like screenings, physicals, and immunizations so our neighbors can spend their energy playing or learning instead of trying to find affordable healthcare.

We Pursue Community Partnerships

There are some things we can’t do alone, so we welcome community involvement—whether that means individual volunteers, groups of classmates, or whole organizations. Volunteers and community partners bring their unique expertise to Hall Neighborhood House, helping us continue to provide varied and high-quality programming for community members of all ages. 

For example, our partners at Beats by Girlz encourage girls to try music engineering and producing, using the professional mixing equipment and recording rooms at Hall Neighborhood House. We provide state-of-the-art technology and they provide valuable mentorship and guidance. 

Youth basketball programs also use our gyms for league games. This program allows our home team, Kings Kids, to showcase their skills, and introduces more community members to Hall Neighborhood House. 

We Model Possibility

Not only do we provide a safe space where kids can be with their friends, we intentionally offer our youth exposure to what’s possible. We seek out staff and leaders with varied personal and professional backgrounds. On our Board, for example, we have members with experience in sales, marketing, banking, healthcare, economics, teaching, and more. 

Sandra Greer, Vice Chair of the Board puts it best, saying, “We’re building a sense of self-worth and a mindset so our students can tell themselves, ‘I can. I am somebody.’” 

We believe in people. And we help people believe in themselves. 

Our values make Hall Neighborhood House a special place. We work every day to be good neighbors and provide high-quality, comprehensive programs for our community. You can be a part of our story and join us in believing in people by supporting our mission today