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BOCA minutes – member meeting January 22, 2024 at 1:00 PM

Location of Meeting:

Virtual (GoToMeeting):

In Attendance:


Rebecca Compton Dr. Day Care
Joseph Tomchak Boys & Girls Club Newport
Maria Fruci Boys & Girls Club Alliance / BOCA grant manager
Amy Vogel Dr. Day Care
Lori Viner Children’s Workshop

Guests & Members:
Marissa Gallagher Hope St ELC
Rebecca Madden Little Acorns Academy
Laurie Gorman Dr. Day Care
Zak Keathley DLT
Stacy Sullivan CCRI
Jenn/Melisa West End Community Center
Charlene Barbieri Little Learners Academy
Olivia Byron GWB
Marlene Roberti Brown Fox Point
Denise Greene West End Community Center
Morgan Everson Haven
Cherima Folston Boys and Girls Club Pawtucket
Catherine Green DHS

Attachments sent before the meeting:

Final QA for DLT Real Jobs BOCA Grant.pdf

Work Immersion Program Guide (April 2023).pdf

Meeting Agenda:

Welcome! This meeting will be recorded and sent to members.
Renew BOCA membership for 2024
Guest Speakers:

  • Maria Fruci, BOCA Grant Manager / Director Rhode Island Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs / Alliance Director
  • Olivia Byron, Director of Employer Workforce Programs, Governor’s Workforce Board of RI Byron, Olivia (DLT)
  • Zak Keathley, Assistant Coordinator-E & T Programs, Governor’s Workforce Board of RI- Real Jobs RI
  • Stacy Sullivan, Director of Industry Partnerships of Community College of Rhode Island

Q & A to discuss upcoming grant opportunity to increase child care staffing / training – review document. Joe – highlight the purpose of the DLT grant, with Zak. Olivia – overview of the Work Immersion Program application process. Stacy – review the CCRI educational component.
BOCA Board – looking for new Board members
Discuss upcoming priorities, review flyer
Review upcoming meeting dates
Member questions & discussion

Meeting Notes:

  • Joe opened the meeting, introduced speakers
  • Maria introduced herself as BOCA grant manager
  • Olivia Byron, GWB – explained GWB Immersion Program. Separate from BOCA. Must first register and be approved with Ocean State Procurement Center. Will get 2 emails, 1 that you are registered, 1 that later says you are APPROVED. If you need help, reach out to Olivia. Register, get approved, can have 5 people on the program through the calendar year. Details can vary based on how many employees you have at your company. Must pay minimum of $15/hour, max $20/hour. Must be RI based employee.
  • Joe – this grant is $18/hour for this program.
  •  Stacy Sullivan, CCRI – discussed curriculum component. This will be a CDA (Child Development Associate) track. This will help them to qualify as a Lead Teacher. Will give them a portfolio, work experience, and education. 
  • Questions:
    • Lori – Can we still enroll?
      • Maria – Still open enrollment. Some initial interest for Cohort 1, still accepting enrollment for cohort 1. Some centers who have teachers working in different age groups might want to do a later cohort.
    • Catherine Green, DHS – are there written resources available about the grant opportunity and the training component available?
      • Maria – we sent a Q&A document that has information
    • Marlene Roberti – if someone has been participating in Immersion Program earlier, can they do this too?
      • Olivia – if in it last calendar year, yes. Resets as of 12/31. There can be 5 people per calendar year. Must be a NEW person to the program.
      • Joe – While a person cannot access GWB funds, there is an opportunity with some of the funding we have to support someone who is already a staff member, so reach out to Maria.
    • Marlene – when will the classes take place?
      • Stacy – mostly online in the evenings. 1 day week, ideally after their work day. School Age training is still in development.
  • Joe – First cohort starts mid-March. Skills RI Future is doing the recruitment. If you are interested, please connect with Maria soon. 1st cohort will have ideally 15 people, depending on interest. As they come through, they will go through an interview process with you.
  • If you want to participate, renew your membership. We have funds in this grant to cover the cost of membership. Rebecca or Maria can help with this.
  • Looking for BOCA board member, please reach out if you’d be interested.
  • Rebecca – went over flyer discussing upcoming priorities.  Will share with Mayforth Group, our BOCA lobbyist.
  • Stacy – went over other CCRI programs in early childhood.
  • Britt Riley – founder of Haven and Coggeshall Club, just learned about BOCA and joined recently.
  • Catherine Greene – Head Start Officer at DHS. Part of her role is to augment HeadStart and find resources.
  • Denise – West End Community Center – anyone know if LISC will have more funding?
    • Amy – they had one for Providence recently. Their website has a section that says Grants Available (check the RI page). Not sure if there is one big one. We can check in with them as well. Joe – we can check and bring someone from LISC to speak if there is more funding. Catherine Greene – can check in as well. RI website:
  • Joe went over membership benefits – lobbyist, guest speakers, ways we work together to help your center. If there are people you want to hear from or issues you’d like to address, please share it with us so we can put it on the membership meeting agenda. Only way to be effective is if we are hearing from you!

Next meetings:
February 26, 2024
March 25, 2024
April 22, 2024
May 2024 – TBD
June 24, 2024
Skipping July & August
September 23, 2024
October 28, 2024
November 25, 2024
Skipping December

Minutes submitted by Rebecca Compton