First Church is now officially a member of the Pioneer Valley Project (PVP) of Springfield. PVP is a diverse coalition of faith-based organizations and other groups which work together on a variety of social justice issues in the greater Springfield area.
At the PVP’s Issues Assembly, on June 25th at Sinai Temple, a large group of representatives from each member organization met to determine three major issues to address for the coming year. Six members of First Church attended this gathering. After an evening of sharing and discernment, the group identified the three areas for focus: 1. Education, 2. Housing 3. Opioid Crisis.
Attendees signed up for one of the three areas. They will gather information by researching and interviewing key players in the community. Next, the research team will identify an action which is specific, immediate, and winnable within the broad topic. (For example, in the broader area of education, PVP members were successful in getting the Springfield public schools to institute a “late bus” so that students could participate in after school activities or extra help.) Anne Landry is part of the Housing Research Team and Mary Friedman is on the Education Research Team which has had two meetings to identify people to interview and questions to ask. Anyone at First Church can be part of this exciting effort. If you would like to be involved, please let Anne, Mary, or Pastor Marisa know of your interest!