Posted by Brendan Szocik


The Rotary Club of West Roxbury/Roslindale chose a new service project for this year and have already begun to see tangible benefits from its efforts. The Club partnered with a local nonprofit called Casserly House. The project had a few goals, including supporting education, growing the local economy, and assisting mothers and children. Since the project began in No-vember, two students have found jobs. (pictured: Dominic Rebelo-West Roxbury / Roslindale Rotary President, Sister Nancy Braceland-Casserly House and Kurt Jacobs – Kurtronics.)

Money raised for the project came directly from the Rotary Club of West Roxbury/Roslindale. The Club applied and won a match-ing grant from Rotary International which funds projects that support humanitarian services in the Rotary District of 7930.

Casserly House is a center for learning, assistance, and caring. It focuses on multiethnic and underserved people in the community. The Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph is the primary sponsor of Casserly House, which is located on Stellman Road in the Boston neighborhood of Roslindale. The director of Casserly House is Sister Nancy Braceland. Sr. Braceland is also a past recipi-ent of Rotary’s Paul Harris award given for extraordinary service to the community. Casserly House provides ESL classes to adults in the morning and provides neighborhood children a facility to do their homework after school.

The project had both a fundraising and service component. The funds raised went to update the computer center, which is an inte-gral part of the programs at Casserly House. Due to the age of the technology, many of the computers were unable to perform basic functions, like run Rosetta Stone software. Members of the Club volunteer time each week to working with the students to use computers and improve their English. Students of the center reflect the diversity found in the city of Boston and come from far and wide, including Cuba, Brazil, Vietnam, and El Salvador. They arrive with varied computer experiences. Some have never used a computer before, some have vast experience, but have issues translating to English, and some come from countries with computers, but no internet and so have no skills in accessing and navigating the web.

Since the Rotary became involved, two students of the center have found jobs. One was turned down from a job specifically for not having computer skills. This experience steeled her resolve to get computer training at the Center. She then reapplied at that employer and got the position. To learn more about Casserly House, visit