Chelsea Community Forum Summary for July 10, 2021

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The following was provided by forum moderator Vincent Elie:

The Chelsea Community Forum (CCF) met via Zoom on the 10th of July. Approximately 8 people participated.

Matt Pegouskie, Program Manager, of 5 Healthy Towns (5HF), presented information regarding OneBigConnection.org which is a project sponsored by the One Big Thing initiative and focuses on improving mental health awareness and prevention in the 5 Healthy Towns.

This site is funded by the 5HF wellness coalitions and acts as a central clearinghouse for the towns of Chelsea, Manchester, Grass Lake, Stockbridge, and Dexter or the 5 Healthy Towns.

The goal of One Big Connection (OBC) is to coordinate local services enabling residents to access local resources. This could include local events, regional and local data to assist grant application processes, community groups, social support networks, physical activities, natural/ecologic spaces, life-long learning opportunities, mental and physical health services, housing, transportation, nutrition, and shelter needs.

Additionally, OBC aims to provide space for community groups and non-profit partners to provide their information and links on the OneBigConnection website. For-profit organizations will be charged a $250.00 application fee to have their information displayed and screened prior to its posting on the OBC website. These fees will be used to help maintain the site.

Participants voiced that they were impressed with the project and the website’s layout. There were concerns voiced that the project would stagnate without continual financial support. Mr., Pegouskie noted that the 5 Healthy Towns enterprise had set aside monies for the site’s support and continual growth.

The plan is to maintain an active and continually updated website. The website went live July 6th.

Mr. Pegouskie will return to CCF on August 14th for further discussion and demonstration of the OneBigConnection website.

The July 10th Forum was recorded and is available at the following link: https://us02web.zoom.us/rec/share/DY7ygpDDXihL7u6lnTw34OPzBGlJzkjWVkbpZ… Passcode: *3y8$DNz

The meeting concluded with a discussion about our meetings returning to an in-person discussion vs. continuing the Zoom format or establishing a hybrid model by utilizing a Zoom and in-person configuration. Regarding potential locations for in-person meetings, there was conversation about outdoor public facilities, such as the gazebo at Pierce Park or Palmer Commons. It was pointed out that a hybrid model may not effectively work because of ambient noise and/or inadequate internet access.

The potential positive of a public location, increased participation from the public. Another idea tossed about was the use of the large conference room at the Chelsea Wellness Center. This location could provide, like the public venues, greater visibility and may allow for the use of the Zoom format.

The final decision was to continue the Zoom option in August and re-visit this discussion at our August Forum.

Website for further information: OneBigConnection.org

The next Chelsea Community Forum is scheduled for August 14 at 9 AM. The Chelsea Community Forum is open to all with an interest in the affairs of the Chelsea School District area and meets the 2nd Saturday of every month at 9:00 AM, currently on Zoom. The meeting link can be found on the Forum’s website: https://sites.google.com/site/chelseamiforum/home.

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