Thursday, September 15, 2016
10AM – 11:25AM

The meeting was called to order at 10:05AM by Chairman Linda Fantasia, BOH Health Agent

Present were (9 people):  Linda Fantasia, BOH Health Agent; David Klein, COA Director; Christine Schonhart, Director, Gleason Public Library; Donna Margolies, BOH Vice Chairman; Holly Hamilton, Director, Recreation Department; Kerry Colburn-Dion, Finance Director; Abha Singhal, COA Board Member; Jason Chandonnet, Web Design/IT Assistance; and Judy Hodges, BOH Administrative Assistant, who took meeting notes.

  1. Welcome and Introductions
  2. Discussion Items:

Define What a ‘Community Health Assessment’ Is

Linda Fantasia provided a brief background on the CHNA-15 ‘Healthy Communities Planning Grant’ for the purpose of conducting a community health assessment.  The grant is for $20K administered by CHNA 15 and funded by Lahey Hospital and Medical Center.  The grant was awarded to the town of Carlisle in July.  The grant was announced to the town at a Board of Selectman by Lee Storrs, BOH Chairman.   Fantasia explained that other surrounding towns including Bedford, Concord, Lincoln and Acton had received CHNA-15 grants in recent years and already implemented the second and final phase of their projects.  For example, the town of Bedford learned that bike lanes would improve the quality of life in their community and developed bike lanes when awarded with the second round of CHNA-15 grant funding.  Carlisle would be eligible to apply for a second round of funding in the amount of $30K that would allow it to implement what was determined to create a ‘healthy community’ at the end of the research/investigation (first) phase it was now undertaking.  As an example, Fantasia stated that perhaps the research would evidence that a community center is needed, but it is unknown what will actually emerge as a possibility.

Fantasia informed that the goal of the CHNA-15 project is to engage the Carlisle community in identifying a shared vision of health to improve quality of life for everyone.  The focus of the research to be undertaken is to understand what would make Carlisle a healthy place to live, work and play across all ages (youth, teens, adults and seniors), while also identifying key improvement areas.  The project is to take into consideration social, emotional, spiritual and physical elements of life that taken together comprise well-being.  Fantasia emphasized that there are to be no preconceived notions in the data gathering/research phase (Phase 1) as to what the net result of any research findings will or should be.   She also went over the packet of information provided to meeting attendees and said that project timelines had been provided.  She informed that the study/project would be an “on-going process”, running through 2018.

According to Fantasia three consultants for the project had been interviewed by steering committee members.  Caitlin Coyle of the Center for Social & Demographic research in Aging, Gerontology Institute at the University of Massachusetts was chosen as the project consultant since her strong expertise in the area of survey construction and development appeared to be of most critical need for the initial project phase.

Coyle and her team of graduate students would conduct three focus groups to investigate three key topic areas, but there would also be some “paper surveys” involved in the data collection process.  Fantasia stated that respondents to all surveys would be anonymous.  Singhal asked if each individual in a family or only one would be permitted to respond to a survey.  Fantasia indicated that it would be necessary to consult with Coyle on this as well as other survey design/collection criteria.  All survey work would need to be completed by the end of December 2017, yet sooner would be better.  When a ‘healthy community’ focus is identified as a result of the CHNA-15 first phase of research, the town would need to understand what its future investment would be and the second phase of the project, as then identified, would need to get on the town warrant by Spring 2018, according to Fantasia.  Colburn-Dion commented that she will go before the Finance Committee to inform them of the upcoming project and what it entails.  Fantasia stated that the committee members could look for matching grants as pertain to ‘sustainability.’  Klein mentioned that there is a new program evolving through the Concord-Carlisle Community Chest, which, via a grant will award three winners $30K each to be put toward ‘human service-oriented’ projects.  Singhal suggested that some local businesses may want to match the CHNA-15 grant with some of their own monies.

An initial promotion of the grant was conducted by the Board of Health at Old Home Day in June.   At that time, event attendees who completed a short survey were made aware of ‘A Special Community Health-Based Announcement’ and asked if they could be contacted in the near future to participate in a project about health and well-being.  Ten completed survey responses were received.

Fantasia also mentioned that Police Chief John Fisher would be hosting an upcoming film screening (‘If Only’) and panel discussion about the opioid epidemic, which is scheduled for Wednesday, October 5 at 7PM.  Chief Fisher’s presentation at the substance abuse program would be the initial act of informing parents (of 7th and 8th grade students) that the CHNA-15 grant research and survey work is underway.

Role of the Steering Committee

The BOH is the lead agency and Council on Aging and Gleason Library the other two key collaborators.  These organizations will be coordinating, guiding and managing the many processes associated with the CHNA-15 project.  The representatives are David Klein, COA Director; Christine Schonhart, Gleason Public Library Director; and Linda Fantasia, BOH Health Agent.

Toward the project’s completion, the primary goal for the Steering Committee is to identify three (3) key action items that emerge as a result of the research conducted during Phase 1.

The Steering Committee will need to seek volunteers in various areas of interest/age tier groups, including millennials, and determine how their needs might be explored.  The Committee would also need to train ‘ambassadors’ who represent the individual groups to help promote the project.  Fantasia added that as the community comes together for this project there may be opportunities to improve the quality of life for residents.  For example, Carlisle business owners, if asked, may want to initiate a mentoring program in their operations for local millennials in need of work.


Name the Project

Fantasia stated that the committee members needed to conceive of a name for CHNA-15 project and that a domain website should be developed to reflect that name ( as soon as possible.  Holly Mansfield along with a couple of other committee members suggested several project names including’ Living in Carlisle’, ‘Caring for Carlisle’, ‘Healthy Carlisle’, ‘Envisioning Carlisle’, and ‘Carlisle CORE’.  Mansfield said that a chosen project name should not be confused with the Concord-Carlisle Community Chest or the Carlisle Community Chorus.  A general consensus seemed to most favor Mansfield’s proposal of ‘Caring for Carlisle’ for the project’s name.  Mansfield imagined that ‘linking trees’ might be an appropriate logo for the project to convey the various concepts of good health and would relate to the rural feel of the town. The health concepts would include ‘social’, ‘emotional’, ‘spiritual’ and ‘physical’.  Mansfield will follow-up with some further suggestions following the meeting.  To address all age tiers, the logo will also include ‘Youth’, ‘Teen’, ‘Adult’ and ‘Senior’.

Fantasia next mentioned that color schemes should be proposed for the project.  David Klein passed around the newly-printed COA business card with a tri-color design by David Freeman.  Klein said that CDL Printing of Gardner, MA., printed 200 business cards at a cost $25.00.  Hodges suggested that a business card bearing the program’s name and concept would be an inexpensive and potentially effective promotional tool that could be handed out by committee members to residents and others throughout program development.  Several others in attendance proposed other color schemes and following a brief discussion, ‘green’ and ‘blue’ were the colors selected to be incorporated into the project’s logo name/design.  Fantasia asked Jason Chandonnet if he could investigate establishing the proposed name of ‘Caring 4 Carlisle’ as a potential web site in an effort to establish online presence for the project.   Mansfield volunteered to explore ‘linking trees’ as a possible logo, while Chandonnet said that he would discuss the proposed project name/logo design with a colleague, utilizing the ‘Caring4Carlisle’ project name and the incorporation of green and blue logo colors.  Klein asked Chandonnet when he would need to be compensated for his work, if up front or otherwise.  Chandonnet stated that he “will do the work first” and could be paid at a later date.  He also suggested that Gleason Library might be able to provide access to computers and volunteers to  help with the undertaking of a survey.   When the web site is being created, Fantasia said it should provide links to the web sites of the Carlisle Mosquito, the Recreation Department, the Gleason Library and to the three churches in town.

Schonhart also suggested survey pop-ups on the web site to remind people of the need for their input. Chandonnet agreed to look into whether the town’s new website has this ability or would need code written. It was agreed that the project team should consider developing a communications and/or marketing plan.

Fantasia stated that it would not be possible to include a survey or promotional piece on the CHNA-15 project in the October tax bill as the deadline to do so likely could not be met.  The January 2017 tax bill mailing would provide an opportunity to do so however.   Klein mentioned that the COA conducted a transportation (needs) survey via a tax bill mailing and it was a useful means to attain feedback from virtually ‘everyone.’

Fantasia stated that the Carlisle School would be sponsoring its ‘spaghetti supper’ on Tuesday, October 18 and that this event would provide an opportunity to promote the project to parents and teachers.

Klein spoke of a COA CCTV-related road trip that would be conducted over the next several months and proposed that he could announce the project on Wednesday, October 19 when they filmed.  He also stated that content/speakers had already been scheduled for public broadcasting until January 2017.  In that month however, it would be possible to have Fantasia, Schonhart and himself, as project Steering Committee members, discuss the specific details about the CHA-15 project.  The CCTV filming runs an hour and is typically scheduled on the third Wednesday of each month from 10AM to Noon.

Fantasia mentioned that Chief Fisher would provide needed statistics from the law enforcement perspective for the project.

Newspaper Article

Fantasia stated that another means of communication to promote the Healthy Grant Project would be to put an article in the Carlisle Mosquito.  She asked if a committee member would draft an article for the paper.  Schonhart volunteered to develop a draft.

Meeting Schedule

Fantasia proposed that the position of meeting chairman should be rotated among the key collaborators  Klein, Schonhart and herself.  Fantasia also proposed that the next meeting could be held on Thursday, October 13 or 20 and that she would check with the consultant Caitlin Coyle to see what her availability is.

  • Next Meeting: Fantasia stated that next meeting would focus on survey design/content.

Speaker:  Dr. Caitlin Coyle, Center for Social & Demographic Research in Aging, Gerontology Institute, University of Massachusetts, Boston will discuss how to design a survey and what’s involved in the survey collection process.

Next Meeting: 

Thursday, October 13, 12 Noon.  Lunch will be provided.

Meeting Chair:  Christine Schonhart


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