Celebrate Community Relations Day with Duffyfield Residents

Alderman Barbara Best Interviews Maria Cho and Antoinette Bosky-Chadwick
This Week from City Hall – Community Relations Day

Update from Get Happy: Craven County’s Habitat for Humanity Neighborhood Revitalization program are in partnership with North Carolina Central University and Get Happy are working together to create a series of programs to encourage community health and wellness for the residents of the Greater Duffyfield area.

The first Community Relations Day will be held on November 20th, from 2-4:30 pm at Lawsons Creek Park. A first-of-its-kind event for the City of New Bern and Craven County, a day of community for minorities and people of color that will raise awareness and understanding of the serious health risks minorities and black communities are facing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Community Relations Day will be a wonderful opportunity to celebrate local grass roots servant leadership and resiliency and culture. It’s free to the public, with activities for children, social and wellness organizations, along with food trucks and music!

All are welcome to enjoy this incredible day to celebrate liberation, discover health and wellness and share safe space.

“Listening to people is something that takes effort and calls for us to put ourselves to the side, not just to hear, but to intake, digest and process what others are saying. Having the ability to listen to seek understanding builds bridges and relationships. When we care about communities and sustainability of efforts to improve quality of life, we understand that those we are helping have the answers and with the right partnerships, can improve outcomes in the future. This event is important because the intentionality put into it’s creation aims to welcome the community into partnership to take an active role in their future by first, being willing to share and trust that we are listening to what they have to say.” said Antoinette Boskey-Chadwick, Neighborhood Revitalization Director Habitat for Humanity of Craven County.

Community Relations Day


During “This Week from City Hall – Community Relations Day”, Alderman Barbara Best of the Fifth Ward sat down with Maria Cho and Antoinette Bosky-Chadwick to talk about this unique event.

Alderman Best asked what the purpose of Community Relations Day and Mrs. Boskey-Chadwick explained, “It’s a way to really lift up the assets in the greater Duffyfield community which is its leaders. Your people are your greatest asset and these grassroots leaders, it time to let them shine, let’s show all the positivity in Duffyfield…If we feed that good that makes a big difference in how a community sees itself and how others view that community. So, it’s an opportunity to lift up those grassroots leaders who are making a difference, who keep the community going. and it’s a really big deal for us.”

Best responded, “And it also brings that connection with the with the community there that you are you care about them you’re listening to them absolutely exactly so that is that is very vital in all of this.”

Mrs. Cho said, “I just wanted to mention going back to what Antoinette was speaking about as far as the grassroots leadership that we’re honoring so we’re honoring this Barbara Lee during this event and we’re asking for it it’s a third Saturday in November and that creates sustainability and that’s another thing that we’re focusing on you know because we feel like that’s sustainable. Sustainability has better outcomes right how do we continue this, how do we make this an annual event, and how do we continue to engage and listen to the community. You know consistently what makes it unique.”

Alderman Best noted, “This proclamation for Ms. Barbara Lee, I think is well deserved. She has been a pillar of the community for so many years…decades, so I’m glad to hear that this she will be a part of this event.”

Bosky-Chadwick said, “Every third Saturday in November let us show how thankful we are for the residents of greater Duffyfield to be a part of our community for us to have their leaders as a part of our community. When we look at people like Ms. Barbara Lee, yourself – Alderman Best, Pastor Hazel Royal, Mr. Reggie Jones, these are people who grew up in the community that many people don’t realize that great things come out of greater Duffyfield.” Best reminded Boskey-Chadwick, “I can’t let you forget to mention this effort you’ve got that way you’ve got that right you know we cannot forget Mrs. Ethel Sampson and her late husband Mr. Johnny Sampson. They are pioneers.”

Cho stated, “What we’re doing is creating space as somebody who’s in city leadership to perhaps hear voices that haven’t had access before and to also listen. NCCU will be there so we had we have a health assessment that they developed back in May and so that’ll be incentivized and we’re hoping that people will participate in that because you know we are trying to um you know again part of that finding out what you need.”

Boskey-Chadwick replied, “And we also have the quality-of-life survey. Health and Wellness and quality of life, those things really go hand in hand. So that we can also get an idea of how people feel about being connected in their community. That will help us to see where we need to go next. We’ve got to sit back and learn installation, that Pastor Hazel Royal is going to facilitate for us. It’s all about just hearing from people what they think of health and wellness. What do you think about when you think of health and wellness? What do you see for your community? Being able to have those on an installation where people just write their thoughts down. Our goal is that we would be able to keep those installations even through the weather in our focus community so that they can remind us as the service providers of what our focus should be seeing around people. It should also show the community we’re listening to you. It brings that accountability for us to be able to look back and say wait are we doing this the way that the community really wants to see it done?”

Participating partners include: The Redevelopment Commission Health Working Group, The Craven County Health Department, CarolinaEast Medical Center, MERCI Clinic, New Bern Redevelopment Commission, Habitat for Humanity of Craven County, City of New Bern, and North Carolina Central University (NCCU). CARTS will provide transportation to Walmart.

From a redevelopment standpoint, Cho said, “We’re investing in people, programing, and places. I think that this event will lend itself to all those P’s.”

They talked about building bridges, identifying partners and others who were missing like the Burmese voices. It’s all about building relationships.

Watch the full interview for all the details here:

We look forward to seeing everyone on November 20 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. with a movie at 5:00 p.m. and it’s a free event.

Sponsors include: First Flight Credit Union, CCHC Healthcare and Craven County Health Department and Hospice.

Let us know if you have any questions by sending us an email.

By Wendy Card