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Jitegemee
411a Highland Ave, Somerville, MA 02144
Meaning "sustain yourself" in Swahili, Jitegemme is an international partnership between American volunteers and KenyanMore educators who work together to help street children in Machakos, Kenya. Jitegemee runs a scholarship program for school children and a vocational training program for young adults, assuring that these children have a roof over their heads and hot meals.  Call the office or visit the website for more information.
Somerville Health Department
50 Evergreen Ave, Somerville, MA 02145

This department works on over a dozen different critical fronts to keep residents safe and healthy. VaccineMore distribution, emergency preparedness (including for bioterrorism disasters) and public health education are just a few of their responsibilities. They address these issues partly through the work of programs and commissions. They include:

  • Public Health Nursing: Coordinates flu vaccine clinics and disease investigations, assists in Emergency Preparedness planning, and runs the Medical Reserve Corps, which trains volunteers to assist with health emergencies and disaster response.
  • School Health Services: Coordinates school nurse services including health care, health education and health screening for students.
  • Shape Up Somerville: Works to improve resident's health and eating habits through education, changes to school food service and food access, and city improvements, such as improved crosswalks that make walking safer.
  • Somerville Cares About Prevention: Works to reduce youth substance abuse via educational outreach and community organizing.
  • Tobacco Control Program: Works to prevent youth smoking and overall second-hand smoke exposure through educational outreach, community organizing and regulation and monitoring of tobacco sales and use.
  • Trauma Response Network: Trains professionals who work with youths, as well as city volunteers, in proper techniques for responding to traumas affecting youths.
  • LGBT Liaison: Conducts outreach to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
  • Human Rights Commission: Works to promote and protect human and civil rights of all residents via educational outreach and through investigation of discrimination or harassment complaints, which may be filed via their web page.
  • Multicultural Affairs Commission: Examines and addresses interracial and multicultural issues in the city and works to ensure all groups are equally represented and have equal access to City resources.
  • Women's Commission: Addresses a broad range of issues affecting women including violence against women and work inequalities, and seeks to empower women residents via educational programs.
Tufts University
Powder House Sq & College Ave, Somerville, MA 02144

When Charles Tufts donated the land around Walnut Hill in 1852, he envisioned a "Light on the Hill." A century and aMore half later, his vision seems to have come to fruition, as those few windswept acres now hold one of the nation's premier universities. With 10 schools ranging from the undergraduate college to the prestigious Fletcher School of International Relations, Tufts has certainly flourished from its humble roots. 

Though famous for its elite international-relations program, Tufts is more than esoteric foreign languages and future diplomats. Tufts holds several championship titles across its division, NESCAC. Its on-campus dining facility is ranked among the top three in the nation (usually losing out only to culinary schools), and its study-abroad program is consistently ranked No. 1 in the nation. 

Community resources: The university also offers many perks for area residents. Their Tufts Neighbors web page includes a calendar of arts, culture, and sports events, as well as lectures, that are all open to the public. They've made room on their campus for a public community garden, a playground, and the Tufts Playing Field park. Students volunteer in the community, and each year school staff donate to the Tufts Neighborhood Service Fund, which supports programs in their host towns of Somerville, Medford, Grafton and Boston's Chinatown. Residents may use the school's library resources on site (but books may not be checked out). And watch for Community Day each fall. At this on-campus festival, residents are treated to live music and dance as well as school tours and good eats.  

Fun fact: After a generous donation from P.T. Barnum early in the school's life, Jumbo the elephant (allegedly Dumbo's friend) became Tufts' mascot, and his visage can be found all over the hilly campus.

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