Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Welcome to The Front Porch! Приглашаем!

The front porch is the spot where the home and community meet. You know the place...Whether a porch, a stoop, a lobby ...It's a place where people celebrate as well as address the challenges that they and their community face. The Front Porch is also an aging-in-place demonstration project which aims to create a supportive community, enabling participants to live healthy, meaningful, safe and enriched lives in their own homes as they age. Funded by the State of Massachusetts, The Front Porch is a program of Jewish Family Service of the North Shore.

Here you'll see highlights of the program and the blog will also give all of us who are involved another way to keep in touch. Please share your comments!

May 14, 2008
Here in New England it's finally feeling like spring--a time filled with anticipation and a good time to start something new, like this blog. Today I will highlight the start of our very exciting Neighborhood Quilt, a project made possible through a generous donation by the Jewish Women's Endowment Fund of The Jewish Community Foundation of the North Shore. The Neighborhood Quilt brings together a diverse group of Front Porch participants to get to know each other and to share ideas about community while engaged in a creative, collaborative project. No sewing skills or artistic experience are necessary to participate!

Experienced quilter Clara Wainwright led our initial session on Monday. She came to us bearing colorful fabrics and the vision to see how they could be turned into faces and much more. We started off by creating self-portraits, some of which are seen here.

After getting our scissors and our creative selves warmed up we worked together on the creation of several mandalas (symbolic representations of a world) about community and spring. In each case our collages were taken apart after being photographed. English and Russian were heard throughout the process. Smiles and laughter needed no translation.

Over the next few weeks you'll see updates here about the progress of the Neighborhood Quilt. In June you'll also read about how our exciting collaboration with The Food Project
is making it possible for us to build raised garden beds for growing organic vegetables and flowers.  Can't you almost smell the fresh basil and tomatoes?