Mayor Martin J. Walsh announced ways to get involved on April 15, to honor Boston’s resilience, generosity, and strength, for the fourth annual “One Boston Day.” The day serves as an opportunity to recognize the good in our community, celebrate one another, and reflect on the spirit and resilience of the people of Boston that was exemplified in response to the loss and tragedies of April 15, 2013.
Individuals and organizations are encouraged to share their plans for One Boston Day on the official website and on social media using the hashtag #OneBostonDay.
“One Boston Day has turned the Marathon into a movement our entire city has rallied around, spreading the message of kindness and goodwill across the world,” said Mayor Walsh. “April 15 will forever be a day that represents the resilience of the human spirit, and I hope everyone can mark this day in a way that showcases the very best of our city and its people.”
“One Boston Day” encourages random acts of kindness and spreading goodwill, and activities across the City will encourage individuals to give back to their community. The tradition came together in 2015 based on the desire expressed by many survivors to pass on the kindness, generosity and support they received following the 2013 Boston Marathon.
In every year since its official establishment in 2015, on April 15, #OneBostonDay has been a leading trend nationally on social media. Last year alone there were over 43,000 posts across social channels. As in the past, Hill Holiday is serving as the creative and digital marketing partner to help spread awareness and raise the visibility of One Boston Day.
The City of Boston has organized several different efforts to honor One Boston Day, including:
Blood Drive on
City Hall Plaza
In partnership with the Boston Public Health Commission and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the Mayor’s Office is hosting a blood drive on City Hall Plaza on Friday, April 13. The Brigham & Women’s bloodmobile will be on the plaza from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Sign up to donate blood here.
John Hancock and
St. Francis House
Support the men and women of St. Francis House by donating new or gently used adult-sized sneakers in the boxes displayed throughout City Hall. The boxes can be found in the third floor lobby and on the fifth floor outside the Mayor’s Office.
Locks and Socks Drive
Support the men and women of Pine Street Inn by donating two of the items most in-need – locks for their lockers, and new socks. Donation boxes can be found in the lobby of 26 Court St., Boston.
Operation Thank A Vet
Boston’s Veterans Service Office is calling for volunteers to sign-up for the One Boston Day “Operation Thank A Vet,” a citywide effort to honor Boston’s veterans. Our goal is to thank each veteran in the city and provide them with information on resources available to them and their families.
School Cleanup at The William E. Carter School, Roxbury
(*Media opportunity only – no volunteers needed)
The William E. Carter School, is a Boston Public School that educates students who exhibit severe/profound cognitive delay, physical handicaps, and complex medical conditions. Part of the school includes an Outdoor Classroom Sensory Healing Garden which provides access to green activities and outdoor physical movement. On Sunday April 15th, PFD will be returning to the Carter School for a day of service. This year our project will include landscaping the School’s sensory garden so the kids and staff can enjoy their wonderful outdoor space, and painting to make some of the school spaces more welcoming.
MR8 Day of Service
The MR8 Foundation is coordinating a variety of service opportunities on Sunday, April 15.
Morning Shift: 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. –
Volunteers will assist in the cleanup and beautification of surrounding spaces. These projects may also include some planting and painting.
Afternoon Shift: 12:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. – Town Field “Service Village”
Volunteer opportunities at the Service Village may include cleaning up the park, painting, sewing reusable bags for a local food bank, making cards for hygiene kits, or assembling literacy kits for a local school.
The Gillian Reny Stepping Strong Center for Trauma Innovation Service Project
In a partnership with Building Impact, the City of Boston is looking for teams of volunteers (children and families welcomed too!) on April 15, from 12-2 p.m. at Townfield, Dorchester, to help provide support to The Stepping Strong Center for Trauma Innovation. In the spirit of One Boston Day, volunteers will help build sling backpacks filled with personalized items for patients who have suffered from the devastation of traumatic injuries and events being treated at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH).
Volunteers will also have the opportunity to hear from the parents of Gillian Reny, then a high school senior, who was one of the 39 critically injured patients at the Boston Marathon rushed to Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH), where doctors and nurses saved her life and both of her legs. In gratitude to BWH, the Reny family established The Gillian Reny Stepping Strong Center for Trauma Innovation with a mission of transforming outcomes for civilian and military heroes worldwide who have suffered devastating traumatic injuries.
While this list does not include every opportunity to get involved on One Boston Day, the City encourages residents and organizations to submit their acts of kindness and volunteer opportunities on the website, onebostonday.org, and sharing on social media using the hashtag #OneBostonDay.
In addition, Mayor Walsh recently announced that together with remote assistive technology company Aira, individuals who are blind or have low vision (BLC) will be able to receive free access to Aira’s smartphone app during One Boston Day and the Boston Marathon.
Using the camera on Aira’s smartglasses or any smartphone, a person who is blind or low vision can download the Aira app and use it to connect to a remote set of human eyes. Known as Aira agents, trained professionals with deep experience communicating with the BLV community use Airasmartglasses or a personal smartphone to serve as visual interpreters for the blind as the agents describe, in real-time, their users’ environments.