Saying hello to Waltham neighbors was more than just a perfunctory custom last week.
surpassed its goal of 2012 “hello” greetings last week.
About 2,136 hello greetings were made last week as part of REACH Beyond Domestic Violence’s “Say Hi To Your Neighbor Week.” The event was intended to create a stronger sense of community and awareness of support for domestic violence victims. The Say Hi event was part of REACH’s Small Actions Campaign, which will continue next month.
“We know these Small Actions have made a difference because while saying ‘Hi,’ we met people whose lives are affected by domestic violence, who told us stories of their own experiences or of family and friends who have experienced it. Just saying Hi helps people to know that support is out there. REACH has direct services for people who need help, and each of us can help by being a resource to build community and look out for one another. Saying Hi helps to build those connections and we hope people continue to reach out to their neighbors in these small ways,” said REACH Community Organizer Allison Berry in a press release.
Waltham residents help hit that goal with several methods. Berry and REACH volunteers greeted Moody Street pedestrians, urged others to say hello to neighbors, and In A Pickle had customers send cupcakes to neighbors. Waltham Patch, as well as the Waltham News Tribune, Boston Globe, WCAC and other media outlets helped publicize the campaign. Waltham’s elected officials also helped, including City Councillor Kenneth Doucette, State Rep. Thomas Stanley, City Councilors Gary Marchese and Diane LeBlanc.
The event also hit another goal, Berry said.
“We really have a new group of advocates for this work, for domestic violence prevention. People, in a new way, are able to talk about this,” Berry told Patch.