Urban Update 
The monthly newsletter of the UMass Dartmouth
Urban Initiative
November 2012
We are beyond excited to announce the launch of the SouthCoast Urban Indicators Project! This is a web-based tool designed to promote informed conversation about urban issues in Fall River and New Bedford, and we hope it will be instrumental in encouraging data-driven, evidence-based solutions to some of our cities' most intractable challenges.

When you visit the site, we hope you'll keep a few things in mind. First, this project is anything but static: what you see now is just a glimpse of what's to come, as we plan to add categories like environment, housing, and others to the mix in the upcoming months. Second, its efficacy depends on community input. Do you know of a great program we should highlight, or a data source we should use? Don't hesitate to let us know!  Third, please be patient: we're still working out some bugs and getting graphs/images online, but we didn't want to wait any longer before sharing the site with you. Again, if you notice something that needs fixing, email or call right away.

Finally, many thanks are due: to the UMass Dartmouth (and New Bedford High!) students who developed the site's content through long hours of research, writing, and rewriting; to the Community Foundation of Southeastern Massachusetts, who provided some start-up funding and great feedback; to mediumstudio, our web developer; and to the UMass Dartmouth Chancellor's Public Service Fund, which has helped us hire a great team of student researchers. Enjoy the site!

  • Project Manager Colleen Dawicki was named a Fellow of MassINC's just-launched Gateway Cities Innovation Institute. This role will help the Urban Initiative better connect with people, ideas, and opportunities throughout Massachusetts. Read more about the Institute. 
  • Are you working on/interested in issues related to college access? How about urban land trusts? We're developing projects around these two areas and would love input and participation from the community. If you want to learn more or get involved, email Colleen.  
From the blog:
  • As Hurricane Sandy plowed through the northeast, Jason Hill wrote about how storms like this frame a conversation around coastal development.  
  • Want to see what an extreme weather event might do to your community's coastline? Read this post and use the mapping tool we highlight. 
EventsUpcoming Events

What:  Community Organizing Training Course   

When:  November 28, 2012; 9am - 4pm  

Where: Neighborhood Housing Services of the South Shore, 80 Rivet Street, New Bedford, MA 02744 
Cost: $35 (includes lunch and materials); learn more and register here

What: Have thoughts about bus and rail service in the SouthCoast? Join MassDOT for a conversation about public transportation in the region, one of a series being conducted throughout the state. 

When:  Monday, December 3, 6-8p

Where: UMass Dartmouth's Woodland Commons
Cost: Free. Learn more here.     

The UMass Dartmouth Office of Sustainability and the Southeastern MA Council on Sustainability present a series on energy efficiency for municipalities. Topics include solar energy, wind energy, and food security.
When: January 10, February 7, March 7
Where: UMass Dartmouth's Woodland Commons
Cost: Free. Learn more and register at this link.

Want your upcoming event listed? Email us!

In this issue:
From the blog
Grant opportunities
Job opportunities

 About the Urban Initiative:


The Urban Initiative at UMass Dartmouth is a division of the Center for Policy Analysis that was established in 2007 to address challenges and opportunities in the region's smaller industrial cities, with a particular emphasis on nearby communities like Fall River and New Bedford.  


In addition to conducting applied research, evaluating programs and policies, facilitating collaborations, and providing technical assistance to cities and organizations therein, the Urban Initiative serves as a knowledge base for urban policy issues and their applications in the region. 

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Email: urbaninitiative@umassd.edu

285 Old Westport Road
North Dartmouth, MA 02747

Website: http://www.umassd.edu/urbaninitiative/ 
Grant & technical assistance opportunities
Civic Support offers low-cost assistance to SouthCoast nonprofits

The just-launched nonprofit, Civic Support, provides affordable marketing strategies to nonprofits so that important causes with limited budgets can still reach the eyes and ears of many.  Civic Support offers online marketing, web design, print marketing and more. We are particularly pleased to share this because its founder, Shonna McGrail, is a UMass Dartmouth alum!

Home Depot Foundation's Community Impact Grants - Deadline: December 12

Given the realities of the current housing market, the foundation is prioritizing projects designed to help military veterans stay in their homes comfortably. More competitive grant proposals will specifically identify projects for veterans and will include housing repairs, modifications, and weatherization work. Click here for more info.

Fiskars' Project Orange: grants for community beautification - Deadline: December 15

Fiskars' Project Orange Thumb provides tools, materials, and other support to help communities reach their goals for neighborhood beautification, community collaboration, and healthy, sustainable food sources. Eleven recipients will be selected from the pool of eligible applicants. Ten will receive $5,000 in cash and tools, and one applicant will receive a complete garden makeover. Read more here.   


Know of any other upcoming opportunities we should share? Email us!
Job opportunities

Civil rights field investigators  
Where: Greater New Bedford

The MA Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) seeks field investigators to help identify instances of unlawful discrimination. Work as an independent contractor with flexible scheduling and earn $40-160 per investigation. To learn more, attend the information session on Wednesday, November 14 from 6-9p at 800 Purchase Street in New Bedford. For more or to RSVP, contact Nicholas Jacques at 617.994.6090 or at civilrightsinvestigators@gmail.com.

SouthCoast Healthy Initiative staff (6 positions)
New Bedford/Fall River/Wareham

The YMCA, through its partnership with Voices for a Healthy SouthCoast, is hiring six full-time staffers to support its grant-funded initiative aimed at improving heart and lung health through smoking cessation in these communities. Positions are listed at  this site  


Make sure to check out our blog, which typically has more job opportunities than those featured here. And let us know if you have an opportunity to share!