In the Community: Boston

Boston, MA, is one of nine communities in FARE's community engagement initiative. FARE staff are working with local volunteers and FARE Clinical Network sites to raise awareness of food allergies.

Community Needs Assessment Findings

More than 450 people completed the community needs assessment. Highlights of the data include:

  • Boston schools are doing a pretty good job, but parents still desire a focus on food allergy education and awareness at the schools (both to staff and students)
  • Doctors are doing “just an okay” job, with one-third of respondents reporting not getting adequate information at the time of diagnosis
  • Mental health issues are a concern, with the majority of parents reporting their child experiencing anxiety, fear of eating and anger either sometimes or frequently

Community Engagement Focus

The CEC identified three goals to focus on. Within those three goals are multiple objectives, some of which are summarized below.

Goal 1: Increase education and support for food allergic individuals throughout their lifespan

  • Host workshops to address anxiety and fear for multiple audiences
  • Support a mini-conference for teens hosted by local FARE Clincial Network sites
  • Provide information to health care providers
  • Create opportunities for adults and college students with food allergies to connect

Goal 2: Increase public respect and knowledge of food allergies

  • Have a presence at relevant conferences, community events and corporate wellness events
  • Collect personal stories to share in various ways, including media pitches
  • Work with neighborhood associations to get them to embrace Teal Pumpkin each fall

Goal 3: Increase education and knowledge of food allergies in the K-12 environment

  • Train volunteers to present the FARE Education Network program to local schools
  • Have a presence at school-related professional conferences
  • Share Teal Pumpkin and Be a Pal materials with schools in underserved communities

Community Engagement Council (CEC) Members

  • Danielle Burneika
  • Dawn Caldwell
  • Meghan Cusick, R.N.
  • Ben Daly
  • Kristie Deloreto
  • Alecia Domer
  • Maureen Lapus
  • John Lee, M.D.
  • Sue Lein
  • Jessica Logsdon, P.A.
  • Bijoy Mathew, M.P.H., M.D.
  • Rose Ann Miller
  • Amanda Moore
  • Lisa Steib, R.N.
  • Christina Westgate