Community Messengers


The Community Messengers Program is coming to Middletown!

The Middletown School Readiness Council and the Parent Leadership Office are bringing a great idea to Middletown! Through our funding partners: The Corrine G. Levin Education Fund we will start a Community Messengers Program in January.

Why Community Messengers?

We know that there are many ways to communicate, especially in this age of technology and instant communication. Often, the families that we want to reach either are not plugged into that technology or there is a language or literacy barrier. Sometimes the best way to communicate is through good old-fashioned, face-to-face conversation. Community Messengers is just that-talking to neighbors, friends and folks that you meet at places like the grocery store, post office or the park.

What are Community Messengers?

Messengers are volunteers in our community who are trained and armed with a "tool box" of information about services in Middletown. Because we're all about children and families, the messengers will focus their efforts on families with young children. They'll know about things like:

  • Information about child care, preschools, public schools and kindergarten registration.
  • The importance of reading, talking, singing, listening and playing to children.
  • Parenting helps through programs like Family Resource Centers, the Nurturing Network, Family School Connection, Parents as Teachers, Home Visiting Programs and Child FIRST.
  • Parent Leadership and Advocacy programs like Voices For Families (VFF), Parent Leadership Training Institute (PLTI), People Empowering People (PEP) and Parents Supporting Educational Excellence (PSEE)
  • Screening information, like the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ).
  • Things to do with children like the library, museum, Park and Recreation, beaches and parks.
  • Health services-- medical and dental care and immunizations.
  • Basic services like SNAP (food stamps), medical insurance, and employment information.
  • Special programs in Middletown like, The Week of the Young Child (April) and the BOOKMOBILE (June-August).

Who are Community Messengers?

Community Messengers are volunteers in the community. They come from all walks of life but they all have one goal in common—to spread the word about programs and services in Middletown. Anyone can be a Messenger, the only requirements are a desire to help others, completion of the 2 scheduled training sessions, and a commitment to attend monthly meetings and serve as a messenger for at least six-months.

Do you know someone who lives in Middletown and who might be interested in becoming a Messenger? Do you have other ideas that will help us get started? Please contact Donna Marino 860 638-1462, or Jessica Stewart at 860 346-7354,


Are you interested in providing face-to-face communication and resource materials to members of the community?

By becoming a Middletown Community Messenger, you can help us keep Middletown families informed about what is happening in the city. Whether you are in the grocery store, on the bus, in the doctor's office, in your child's school, or in the park, you can use this opportunity to help keep community members in the know!

All parents and caregivers should be empowered with information, family-centered, family-driven support and the skills needed to ensure they are their children's first and most important teacher. Community Messengers is the vehicle to communicate with parents in Middletown's diverse neighborhoods. This program connects leaders who have the trust of their neighborhood and the ability to overcome language barriers. The program will increase opportunities for parents to expand the skills and knowledge that will support and strengthen their families.

As a Community Messenger you will participate in:

  • orientation sessions,
  • receive a toolkit of information to help and refer parents and their children: prepare for school, improve reading skills, develop positive mental health, eat healthy meals, obtain legal and health services, health insurance, participate in after school and youth development programs, gain necessary job skills, and learn about job placement resources,
  • Messengers will also receive the Middletown Youth and Family Guide and become familiar with "Connections" that will provide up-to-date community information from community partners,
  • Monthly meetings to share information receive toolkit updates and participate in professional development.
  • Stipends, a light dinner and child care will be provided at orientation sessions and monthly meetings.
  • T-Shirts and tote bags will be provided to identify Messengers as individuals who know how to find the right resources to help families raise their children and assure they are successful in school, work and life.It is required that all applicants be current Middletown residents. Click here for the application or visit the website at
  • Deadline for submission is December 30, 2015.

For more information Please contact Donna Marino 860 638-1462, or

Jessica Stewart at 860 346-7354,