Arts

Meet the five “Wonder Women” decorating Malden’s bike path AND the women behind them

By Samantha Deras In the midst of bright colors and bold outlines, you can see five of Malden’s famous women looking back at you. A new Malden Arts mural by artist Amanda Hill highlighting five local “wonder women” was recently installed along the bike path this October (off Main St. between Charles and Madison St.). Malden Arts is a community organization that was founded in 2006 by former Maldonian Naomi Brave who is on its board of directors along with four other women: Candace Julyan, Robin Inman, Naomi Kahn, and Sharon Santillo. The group’s mission is to bring art to the Malden community and put the spotlight on local artists. “As much as we want to support local artists and all that they do, we felt that not everyone goes to galleries, not everyone goes to museums, but public art is truly for everyone involved in this very diverse community,” Malden Arts historian Sharon Santillo said. “And we wanted to put art out there that everybody could enjoy, just in their daily life or as […]

Education

School Department continues to support controversial curriculum despite charges of racial insensitivity

By Avieana Rivera The Malden School Committee and superintendent continued to support the district’s new curriculum at their November meeting, despite charges from parents and teachers that it is racially insensitive. Seven different educators, all members of the Malden Education Association (MEA), along with two concerned parents, spoke out against the Amplify curriculum at October’s monthly school committee meeting, which they claimed is racially insensitive and a potential civil rights violation for English language learners. Amplify ELA (English/Language Arts) is a national-for-profit curriculum and was purchased by the Malden School District for all students in grades Pre-K through 8. They said one of the more disturbing lessons for 8th graders included a passage written by 19th century abolitionist Frederick Douglass where he quotes a slave master using the N-word four times to express his displeasure of slaves being taught to read and write. “I did everything I could to prepare my students for what they were going to read. Nothing prepared me for the gasps, the looks on their faces when they saw the illustrations. […]

Contribute

How to help (close to home) this holiday season

This article is an updated and modified version of a piece that ran last year in Neighborhood View. Detailed info on how to help appears at the end of this article. Are you looking for meaningful ways to give back this holiday season? Donating and volunteering locally has many benefits beyond the most important of meeting local community needs.  Donating to a local food or toy drive or doing hands-on volunteering provides an opportunity to connect more deeply with one’s community and meet others who are spending their time giving back. Volunteering can also offer a different or broader perspective on one’s own life. The need for donations and volunteering is year-round, but giving back at this time could also help jump start a cycle of giving and volunteering during all seasons. Malden is a community rich in nonprofits, service organizations and community groups that help those in need, including local people struggling with housing insecurity, food insecurity, substance abuse, isolation and other challenges. The Malden Warming Center serves nightly meals and a warm place […]

Arts

“Second House” filmmakers discuss filmmaking, Malden, and their next project shooting at Urban Media Arts

By Jack Drees Lights, camera, Malden! A new short film is set to begin production in Malden this weekend. The untitled “proof of concept” production for a proposed feature film — a psychological thriller — will take place at Urban Media Arts, and YOU have the opportunity be a part of it! The production invites people with varying levels of experience to fulfill some behind-the-scenes roles. It will also bring back two minds behind the award-winning science fiction short film To Err. The two returning minds are Anthony Martinez and Anders Johnson. They are passionate about films and how they are made. Both have origin stories that relate to their craft and the setting for this upcoming film. Now a Malden resident, Martinez was a TV reporter while still a student at the University of Missouri. Comfortable in front of and behind the camera, he took his newfound interest and pursued his Masters degree at the London Film Academy in England, where he worked with international students and collaborators. He describes it as an “incredible […]

Featured

Malden provides support for Haitian migrant families

By Maile Blume A rapidly growing number of Haitian migrant families are seeking shelter in Massachusetts to escape violence, poverty, and hunger — all of which have intensified since 2021 following the assassination of the former President of Haiti, Jovenel Moïse. Malden joins cities throughout Massachusetts in responding to the needs of the incoming families. Reverend Dieufort Fleurissaint, the founder of True Alliance Center, Inc. — a Haitian-led organization dedicated to supporting migrant families — said that those arriving often do not have any family ties in the U.S. and face many challenges to finding housing and employment. “You know what’s the number one thing they told me? They need to work,” said Fleurissaint, adding, “Many of them are engineers, teachers, doctors, plumbers, professional drivers, artists — many of them had basically previous professions back home.” However, migrants seeking shelter in Massachusetts must wait for work authorizations, which can sometimes take six months to a year to receive. In the meantime, the families depend on services contracted through non-profit organizations, including shelter in motels and […]

Featured

Malden Community Fridges open their doors to the hungry

By Kami Nguyen Dotted around the city of Malden are a handful of large painted boxes that house community refrigerators — stocked to the brim with free food for anyone in the community to take as they need. The Community Fridge initiative, founded by City Councilor at Large Craig Spadafora, and Ward 8 City Councilor Jadeane Sica, was started in March 2021 with a single spare fridge from Spadafora’s basement. Since then, the program has grown to four fridges at various locations around the city, and two more waiting to be installed. No city funds are used to sustain this program. Aside from a one-time grant, the entire initiative is community run. Local businesses donate fridges and electricity, the Malden Teen Enrichment Center decorates their protective boxes, existing organizations provide food and volunteers restock them every week. Much of the food comes from an organization in Arlington called Food Link, that saves unused food from local grocery stores. “Councilor Spadafora and I teamed up with them after learning about that particular organization when we volunteered […]

Arts

6th Annual Hispanic Festival offers a lively celebration

By Sabrina Monteiro On October 7, the North Shore Hispanic Association celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month for the 6th consecutive year in Malden. Among the local figures attending was Mayor Gary Christenson, who gave a speech about the importance of this celebration. “They say to never underestimate the power of music,” Mayor Christenson said, excited about the opportunity to showcase Hispanic culture in Malden. He finished by saying, “Gracias por estar aquí y disfruten el evento.”  Soon enough, everyone was on the dance floor. Iliana Sanchez, the 2023 Preteen Miss Honduras winner, began the festivities with her rendition of “I Am Woman.” Other performers followed, including Pumawari Tusuy, a traditional Peruvian dance group from the Boston area. Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from September 15th to October 15th. The initiation of this celebration first began in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson. It then expanded into the span of a month by President Ronald Reagan and turned into a law on August 17, 1988.  The event in Malden was held at the Malden […]

Featured

The Great Malden Outdoors: Making outdoor recreation more accessible to communities of color

By Nia Harmon Cities across the United States saw an increased use of outdoor spaces during the COVID-19 Pandemic, including the Greater Boston area. However, these outdoor spaces have not been maximized by all communities based on what is called “The Adventure Gap,” which measures the percentage between different groups that participate in outdoor activities in comparison to their makeup of the U.S. population. Working towards bridging that gap in the city of Malden is Darren Josey, founder and CEO of First Seed Sown, a sales and marketing company, and the new outdoor education and empowerment campaign, The Great Malden Outdoors. The campaign is designed to help break down barriers of entry to outdoor sporting for communities of color. With 14 years of experience working in the outdoor industry, Josey is encouraging members of his community to appreciate the city’s natural beauty. “I think Malden is a great example of a very diverse town ethnically and socioeconomically, that has amazing outdoor recreation that the residents here are not using because they don’t know it exists,” […]