Symposium on Boston's Children Slated for Wednesday

(4-25-97) -- A Faneuil Hall symposium to be hosted by Boston College President William P. Leahy, SJ, and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino on Wednesday will launch what BC administrators hope is an ongoing partnership between the University and the city to build a more caring community for Boston's children.

The April 30 forum, co-sponsored by the Boston College Center for Child, Family and Community Partnerships and the Mayor's Office, caps the first annual "Boston Children's Week," a series of events and workshops from April 28 to May 3 intended to educate, motivate and celebrate the young people of the city.

Scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. next Wednesday in the historic Boston meeting hall, the symposium will invite participants from across the Boston community to offer their visions on how best to promote the positive development of city youth.

Organizers hope the symposium will inspire an agenda for improving conditions for Boston's young, which Boston College is prepared to work closely with City Hall to further.

"Boston College's Center for Child Family and Community Partnerships was created to bridge and integrate all the different strengths of the city, and is the appropriate organization to provide a catalytic role for the city," said the center's director, Brennan Professor of Education Richard M. Lerner.

"The breadth and depth of the challenges to the health and safety of Boston's children exist at historically unprecedented levels," Lerner said. "The positive development of youth can be promoted, however, if the key institutions of the community integrate their expertise and resources."

Lerner said symposium panelists will include parents, community activists, philanthropists, academics, and business and religious leaders.

"Participants in the symposium's panel of speakers will explore the roles and responsibilities of key sectors of our community in regard to enhancing the lives of the children of Boston," he said.

"We want to formulate ideas for an agenda that all facets of the Boston community can pursue in the years ahead."

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