Kingian Nonviolence Conflict Reconciliation Training in Hartford

Greetings All,

As April 4 approaches marking 44 years since Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s body was taken from us, we at the Connecticut Center for Nonviolence are here to tell you that although he was shot, they missed!

His work, our work and the legacy lives on. Nonviolence is the sword that heals.

Attend our next Two-Day Core Introduction to Kingian Nonviolence Training on April 20 & 21, 2012.

Let your voice be heard in person or by your generous tax deductible donation at our SONG POWER – SING FOR YOUR LIVES! FUNDRAISER Workshop, we are raising funds for Nonviolence Training for Hartford Youth. Sunday April 29, 2-4pm.

Every penny you donate will go toward bringing this powerful body of knowledge to those who do not have the resources to attend a training. A training in Kingian Nonviolence can save the life of a teen stricken by hopelessness and oppressed by lack of information.

Today in Hartford hundreds of people are gathered for the funeral of two young men who were killed in a car accident. Instantly, youth enraged by the conditions turned to retaliation as their perceived only recourse. One of our strongest peace warriors stood before an impassioned youth armed with a gun.  He peacefully talked the grief stricken boy down.

It’s that serious, it’s happening right now. We may not see this, making it easier to dismiss it all, but I assure you, every day we are loosing lives in our Capital City and across the state. If not physically,  then mentally and emotionally. Hopelessness is a condition that robs your life before it even begins. It’s unconscionable, it must and can be changed.

You are the solution.

  • Volunteer for the CT Center for Nonviolence
  • Invite the Center for bring a training to your work place, school, Temple, Church, Group or Community Center
  • Become a Kingian Nonviolence Trainer
  • Sing with our Chorus and breath light into the darkness
  • Make a tax deductible donation to the Center

” I cannot sit idly by in Atlanta and not be concerned about what happens in Birmingham. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly”  ~ MLK

Join our Movement, Your Movement,
Save a Life!

Just Peace,

Victoria Christgau
Founder/Executive Director

CT Center for Nonviolence
50 Founders Plaza Suite 304
East Hartford, CT 06108

Neighborhood Office:
687 Albany Ave
Hartford, CT 06112

State NAACP Holds Town Hall Meeting on Education Reform

NAACP State Conference President Scot X. Esdaile will join Gov. Dannel P. Malloy  for a town hall meeting on SB24, Malloy’s Education Reform Bill. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, March 20, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. at the Walsh Elementary School, 55 Dikeman Street.
“There have been a number of conversations about the Governor’s bill, which aims to address the State’s shameful achievement gap,” State Conference President Scot X. Esdaile said. “Whiel the NAACP has concerns about certain aspects of the bill, I am dismayed that  the conversation seems to have shifted from what’s in the best interests of children to how to best protect adults and who or what is to blame. This issue is far too important to let divisiveness and politics prevent meaningful change for Connecticut students.”
The Governor’s education reform bill is based on six principles: enhancing families’ access to early childhood education; supporting low-performing schools; expanding the availability of high-performing school models; removing barriers to success; developing teachers and principals; and delivering additional resources to districts that embrace reform. The full text of the bill can be found via the following link:
For more information on the town hall meeting and to secure media access, call (860) 523-9962.

Inner-City Dental Clinic May 19

May 19 Inner-City Dental Clinic in Hartford

Grants totaling $49,000 have been awarded by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving to support the fourth annual free Inner-City Dental Clinic to be held Saturday, May 19, at Community Health Services, 500 Albany Ave. in Hartford.
The clinic, held in partnership with the West Indian Foundation, Inc., will be held from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., on a first come, walk-in basis. In addition to dental treatment, the clinic will also supply free screenings for HIV, blood pressure, diabetes, vision and oral cancer.
Last year, also with support from the Hartford Foundation, a staff of 70 volunteer dental professionals treated approximately 300 patients – children and adults. Services included exams, screenings, x-rays, cleanings, fillings, extractions and interim dentures. More than 400 procedures valued at almost $92,000 were performed.
The volunteers included students and faculty from the School of Dental Medicine at the University of Connecticut, private practice dentists, assistants, hygienists and Lions Club members and community volunteers, as well as Community Health Services staff.
Although Connecticut has a relatively low rate of people without health insurance, an estimated 600,000 to 1 million people lack access to dental care.
The grants for the clinic are from seven funds at the Hartford Foundation: the Aaron Marks Foundation Fund, Elwyn V. and Elsie H. Harp Family Foundation Fund, Samuel Roskin Trust, S.A. Johnson Family Fund, Charles B. Cook Fund, Anonymous  No. 38 Fund, and the Beatrice Fox Auerbach Foundation Fund.
Community Health Services is a private, nonprofit, federally qualified, full-service health center, the second oldest health center in the state. While its almost 19,000 clients live mainly in its primary coverage area of North Hartford – designated a Dental Health Professional Shortage Area by the federal government – it serves clients throughout Greater Hartford.
The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving is the community foundation for the 29-town Greater Hartford region, dedicated to improving the quality of life for area residents.  The Hartford Foundation receives gifts from thousands of generous individuals and families and in 2011 awarded grants of more than $28 million to a broad range of area nonprofit organizations. For more information about the Hartford Foundation, and its strategic plan, Accelerate Success, visit or call 860-548-1888.

Connecticut’s Palliative Marijuana Program Info

Learn about Connecticut’s Palliative Marijuana Program. It will:

  •      Protect patients, their caregivers and physicians from prosecution.
  •      Help patients suffering with pain
  •      Provide physicians with another option for cases they deem appropriate
  •      Eliminate the incarceration of Connecticut’s most vulnerable patients
  •      Enable local law enforcement to distinguish recreational users from patients
  •      Create a board of 8 physicians to expand the list of conditions for medical marijuana patients
  •      Create a state approved dispensary system to ensure legal and responsible distribution

Currently damage to the nervous tissue of the spinal cord with objective neurological indication of intractable spasticity, cancer, glaucoma, positive status for HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Epilepsy, cachexia, crohn’s disease, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and Wasting syndrome are qualifying conditions.

Scope of the program

  • Patients, Physicians, and Caregivers
  • Must be 18 years old and register with the Department of Consumer Protection
  • Caregivers cannot have a drug dealing or manufacturing conviction.
  • Are protected from prosecution
  • Marijuana and paraphernalia must be returned to them upon case dismissal if arrested
  • Are protected from prosecution or punishment by the CT Examining Board
  • Enrollment & conditions are confidential, not subject to Freedom Of Information Act

Dept of Consumer Protection will monitor regulations

  • Department of Consumer protection determines what a month supply will be
  • Health insurance providers are not required to pay for participation in the program
  • Class C misdemeanor if you claim to be in the program but aren’t to avoid arrest
  • Class A misdemeanor if you falsify medical marijuana certificates or recommendations
  • Dispensaries must be licensed by the Commissioner of Consumer Protection
  • No landlord, school, and/or employer may disqualify a person because they are a qualifying patient or caregiver unless it jeopardizes federal funding or subject to federal law

For more information please contact: Lorenzo Jones, A Better Way Foundation, 860-712-1246 or or LaResse Harvey, Civic Trust, 860-777-7814 or

Drug Overdose Prevention

Drug Overdose Prevention
Fact Sheet

This year we are trying to make overdose prevention available to people who can assist if they believe some is experiencing an overdose.

According to a 2004, Connecticut Department of Public Health report on fatal and non-fatal drug overdoses between:
2000 – 2002

  • About 73% of unintentional opiate overdose decedents were white and 8% were black. Almost 18% of decedents were Hispanic (of any race).
  • About 41% of unintentional opiate and related narcotics poisoning deaths took place in the decedent’s home.

A more recent study by the Yale School of Public Health released in 2009 found between:
1998 – 2009

  • 61% of the overdoses involved heroin; the remaining cases involved prescription opioid analgesics such as hydrocodone, oxycodone and methadone, or a lethal combination of the opioids.
  • Most of the deaths were among people 35-44 years old.
  • There was an increasing trend of overdoses in older individuals, including some in their 50s and 60s.
  • Only 22 of Connecticut’s 169 towns did not report an overdose death during from 1998 – 2009
  • There was a surprisingly high prevalence of overdose deaths in parts of Litchfield, Middlesex, and Windham counties, as well as in the state’s major urban centers and their surrounding communities.

The 2004 report suggested, “naloxone appears to be the most promising current intervention strategy to reduce overdose mortality”.

In 2011 the Connecticut General Assembly enacted Good Samaritan legislation to protect people who report an overdose and may be in possession of drugs at the time of reporting.  This year Connecticut wants to take the responsible next step and allow health care professionals to prescribe opioid antagonists (naloxone) to a broader group of persons for the prevention of drug overdoses.

In short this will allow a licensed healthcare professional to prescribe naloxone to people who may be present when a person is experiencing an overdose.

For more information please contact: Lorenzo Jones, A Better Way Foundation, 860-712-1246 or or LaResse Harvey, Civic Trust, 860-777-7814 or

CT Young Writers Trust announces program for spring

The Connecticut Young Writers Trust — the state’s longest-running literary competition for teens, now in its 15th year — announces its program for spring 2012.

The trust will host free workshops for young poets and writers and their teachers from around the state on March 10 at the Jumoke Academy in Hartford and at Rockville High School on March 13.

On April 13, Connecticut poet Marilyn Nelson and novelist Wally Lamb will perform at The Hartford Club at 7 p.m. in a fundraising event.

Since 1998, the Trust has affirmed the work of more than 7,000 young poets and writers, awarding more than $200,000 in prize money.

For more about the contest, read the story by the Register Citizen of Torrington.

For more information visit  CT Young Writers Trust.

Coca-Cola Apprenticeship Experiences Contest for Teens

Coca-Cola Urges African Americans to “Pay It Forward” This Black History Month And Beyond

Grammy Award-winner and philanthropist Ne-Yo, fashion designer Tracy Reese and Essence president Michelle Ebanks are joining Coca-Cola in a refreshing new Black History Month program urging African Americans to “pay it forward” to the next generation.
The world’s most recognized brand celebrates Black history being made today, and aims to cultivate history yet to come, with the launch of “Coca-Cola Pay It Forward.” The program includes a public service challenge and online contest offering teens once-in-a-lifetime apprenticeship experiences with some of today’s leading celebrity history makers — Ne-Yo, Reese and Ebanks. “Coca-Cola Pay It Forward” is designed to inspire African Americans to take an active role in empowering today’s youth to become tomorrow’s history makers.
“‘Coca-Cola Pay It Forward’ charges each of us with the responsibility to advance the next generation,” said Kimberly Paige, assistant vice president, African American Marketing Group, Coca-Cola North America. “By drinking and supporting Coca-Cola, our consumers make it possible for us to pay it forward with this one-of-a-kind opportunity. We strongly encourage moms and dads to participate in the mission – simply by nominating their teens for the unique apprenticeship experiences. We also invite the rest of the country to pay it forward to young people in their homes and communities – helping them to achieve their education and career goals this Black History Month and beyond.”
Starting today, parents can go to My Coke Rewards ( and nominate their child, age 16-19, for a chance to win an apprentice experience. The four “mom approved” and “teen endorsed” apprenticeships will focus on the following areas: fashion (Reese), business (Ebanks), music/entertainment and community/philanthropy (Ne-Yo). Winners will spend a week this summer in New York City or Atlanta being mentored by and shadowing their celebrity history makers and teams. Teens are also invited to nominate themselves. The contest runs through March 15.
“We have all benefitted from those who came before us; our success stands on their shoulders,” said Ne-Yo, recording artist, songwriter, producer, actor and founder of The Compound Foundation. “Without my mom and mentors, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I am happy, through my charity, The Compound Foundation, to partner with Coca-Cola and help pay it forward to the next generation.”
In addition to awarding the national celebrity apprenticeship experiences, Coca-Cola will leverage corporate and community partnerships to provide local opportunities in select cities, including Atlanta, Memphis, Detroit, Birmingham and Chicago, expanding the program’s reach.
The Coca-Cola Pay It Forward Movement Coca-Cola urges African Americans to join in its national movement to pay it forward to the teens in their lives by helping them achieve their education and career aspirations. A public service announcement featuring Ne-Yo will run on radio stations across the country issuing the “Pay It Forward” challenge.
Paige encourages every adult to become involved with a youth by: mentoring; offering inspirational words; helping with homework; and exposing him or her to different career opportunities. The public is invited to share ways it is paying it forward this month by posting its contributions on Twitter and using the hashtag #PayItForward.

The Coca-Cola Company

The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world’s largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world’s most valuable brand, our Company’s portfolio features 15 billion dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of 1.7 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world’s top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system employees. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter at

Free Classes for Homeowners Facing Foreclosure

Connecticut Fair Housing Center offers classes state-wide

One in every fourteen Connecticut homeowners is facing foreclosure or is more than 90 days behind on their mortgage payments. More than two-thirds of those homeowners lack legal representation.

The state laws governing the foreclosure process are complex, as is the mediation process. There are unscrupulous scam companies, many of whom take large payments in advance of any work and then disappear, leaving the homeowner even deeper in debt.

The Connecticut Fair Housing Center offers regularly scheduled classes for self-represented homeowners facing foreclosure. Class attendees learn about the legal process from a Center attorney, hear about the mediation process from a court foreclosure mediator, and learn about a wide array of resources for homeowners from a representative of the state Department of Banking. The classes are held monthly in Hartford and in Fairfield County, with classes in Fairfield County alternating among Stamford, Bridgeport, and Norwalk.

The Center provides its foreclosure prevention manual, Representing Yourself in Foreclosure: A Guide for Connecticut Homeowners, to every participant in the classes. The manual is now available in both English and Spanish. The manual and the classes help homeowners navigate the legal system and greatly increase their chance of keeping their homes. It includes all relevant forms and documents that a homeowner needs to file with the courts, as well as an exhaustive resource guide to other supporting organizations. Please call 860.247.4400 to request a copy of the manual. It can also be downloaded from the Center’s website:

The classes help the Center leverage its small foreclosure prevention legal staff by offering consultation with volunteer attorneys, law students, and paralegals who are available after each class to meet with homeowners to discuss cases individually.

Jill Lacedonia, a foreclosure prevention attorney at the Center notes, “The foreclosure prevention manual is an extremely important resource, in that it informs homeowners how they can represent themselves without a lawyer in their efforts to keep their home.  We are very pleased that the manual is now available to the many Spanish-speaking homeowners in Connecticut.  We encourage anyone who may be facing foreclosure to call and request a copy of the manual in Spanish or English, and to attend one of our clinics in Hartford, Bridgeport, Stamford, or Norwalk.”

Hartford classes are jointly sponsored and supported by the University of Hartford Paralegal Program, and the Mayors of Bridgeport, Norwalk and Stamford are sponsoring and supporting the classes in those cities along with the Center’s partner, Homes Saved by Faith.

Please call the Connecticut Fair Housing Center’s foreclosure prevention information line at 860.263.0731 or visit the website at for more information.

Planning for Young Adults with Disabilities

After the Cap and Gown
How to Plan for your Child with Developmental Disabilities
What happens when your child with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities turns 21?
What questions should you be asking and where do you go to find the answers?
Take the time to put a plan in place for your child’s future today.

Who Should Attend?
Parents of children with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities, ages 15-21.

NEAT Marketplace,
Corner of Coventry and Holcomb Streets
Hartford, CT

Saturday, February 25, 2012
10:00 – 11:30AM

Please contact Leslie Simoes, 860-246-6400,

This transition workshop is sponsored by The STAR Foundation & The Arc of Connecticut.

Scholarship for Nursing Students

The Tuskegee Airmen Scholarship Foundation (TASF) and the National Black Nurses Association (NBNA) announced the establishment of the Della H. Raney Nursing Scholarship, named after the first chief nurse assigned to the Tuskegee Army Air Field.

The $2,000 scholarship is targeted to nursing students enrolled in at least the sophomore year at an accredited BSN degree program. Each applicant must submit an application, official transcript, two page statement about their nursing career/journey, resume, and two letters of references. The annual scholarship deadline is April 15.

“We are delighted to partner with the National Black Nurses Association to provide scholarships to worthy nursing students in pursuit of their nursing career. This scholarship acknowledges the role that women played in the success of the Tuskegee Airmen Experience”, said Jerry Hodges, President of TASF and a Documented Original Tuskegee Airmen.

“NBNA is excited to expand its collaborative partnership with the Tuskegee Airmen Scholarship Foundation. We share the same goal to help our Nation prepare professional, licensed nurses. NBNA offers scholarships to student nurses at all levels. The scholarships are based on merit and financial need”, stated Dr. Deidre Walton, President of the National Black Nurses Association. “It is a special privilege to join with TASF in honoring a military nurse. NBNA has military nurse members who contribute not only service to our country but provide valuable leadership to our organization”.