Chelsea Community Forum Summary for August 14

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The following is from forum moderator Vince Elie:

The Chelsea Community Forum (CCF) met via Zoom on the 14th of August. Approximately 8 people participated.

Matt Pegouskie, Program Manager and Administrator, of 5 Healthy Towns (5HF), provided a demo of One Big Connection’s website (https://www.onebigconnection.org/), which went live July 6th. This included a discussion of its goals and took the group through a tour of the site. 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 and enable 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.

Matt also provided an update on the site’s available connections. As of now there are 60 different resources (up from 37 last month).

The site is designed to work on multiple platforms, including iPhones, Androids, iPads, and other wireless technologies. There is not an App at this time, but it is being discussed. The site was created to enable easy access to multiple different resources and aims to allow users to access resources within 2 clicks from OBC’s home page.

The site will display when each resource was last updated and OBC plans to contact these partners at least yearly to keep items updated.

The overarching theme of One Big Connection is supporting the mental health of residents in the regions covered by the 5 Healthy Towns Foundation. OBC can be seen as a spoke in the wheel of community health, connecting an individual within the community to the resources that will meet their needs. It may become a means for inter-generational connections throughout the 5HF region. Ultimately, OBC looks to connect 5HF’s goals of optimism, engagement, resiliency, and inter-connectability regionally.

OBC and 5HF recognize that not all community members are tech savvy or have access to technology and are looking for ways to reach this group of folks.

The August 14th Forum was not recorded, however, interested parties can peruse the site at https://www.onebigconnection.org and contact 5HF at (734) 433-4599 or info@onebigconnection.org with any questions.

We concluded with a discussion about our upcoming meetings and they will continue on Zoom. Our September meeting will be our coffee klatch format; October will be a forum featuring Mayoral and City Council candidates. This will be scheduled for 90 minutes, broken into two blocks, with one for the mayoral candidates and another for the council candidates. Each candidate will have a 3-5 minute introductory speech, followed by questions from Chelsea Community Forum participants. The questions will not be scripted. November’s meeting will dovetail with Civility Month.

The next Chelsea Community Forum is scheduled for September 11 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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