The Needs Assessment and Evaluation Working (NEW) Group brings together parents/caregivers and early childhood providers with to provide insights and to the Massachusetts Early Childhood Needs Assessment. NEW Group members leverage their lived experiences to advise on design and implementation at key points during the project.

Carolyne Concepcion

I was raised in Holyoke MA, I am the mother of 2 beautiful children an 8 year old girl and an almost 2 year old boy! I am fluent in Spanish and received my certificate in Social work in 2016. After many years in customer service, from waitressing to bookkeeping, I began work with sexual assault victims as a volunteer for Day One organization in Rhode island, and when I moved back to Massachusetts I began my professional journey in the recovery field in 2018, I started as a recovery specialist at a residential program for women and children in Northampton and moved on to become a family recovery support specialist for the First Steps Together program at Square One, working with women in or working toward recovery and their parenting journey. I’ve helped to build the program from the beginning and I am so honored to have a helping hand in the community. My personal goals are to make a difference, and to make my kids happy every day. With the joy and health of my children I feel wealthy!

Barbara Costa

Barbara lives and works on the south coast of Massachusetts. She is a mother to 3 boys and a grandmother of 6 beautiful grandchildren. Barbara holds a dual Bachelor’s degree in Human Services and Early Intervention from Fisher College where she graduated Summa Cum Laude. She has always had deep compassion for others and, to that end, has worked in the human services field for nearly 40 years. For the better part of the last 20, she has dedicated herself to the field of Early Education, working as a Home visitor for Early Head start. During her time there, she has become deeply involved in the mission to better involve fathers in the early education setting and is an active member of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee striving to create a more equitable environment for the children and families that she serves.

Franchesca Dominique

I was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts. I am a mom and an educator. Fluent in Haitian Creole, my Haitian culture means a lot to me. I have a Masters degree in Special Education. I enjoy working in the community and engaging with individuals, to do work that will build legacy. When I’m not spending time with my family/friends, or shopping, I enjoy volunteering in the community. I am very passionate about advocacy and teaching individuals to stand up for themselves. I believe everyone has a voice, and that it should be expressed in  a way to make a difference.

Andrée Gonzalez

Andrée Gonzalez, a Haitian-Italian-American native of Massachusetts, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from UMASS Boston. With experience as both a Healthy Families participant and former Healthy Families home visitor, Andrée values diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion in all aspects of life. She currently serves as a contracted organizational learning and development specialist, partnering with the Children’s Trust on a mission to reduce child abuse and neglect in the state of Massachusetts. Outside of work, she enjoys immersing herself in novels and embarking on outdoor adventures with her family.

Jannine Reyes

Jannine Reyes was born in Puerto Rico and was raised in Springfield MA. She spent 10 years working as a child care provider but wanted to be more involved in the community so she joined family services to fulfill her goals as a parent educator. She now supervises the Parents As Teachers Program where she works towards increasing parent knowledge of early childhood development, provides early detection of developmental delays and connections to services, helps improve parent, child and family health and well-being while strengthening community capacity and connectedness. Jannine is currently pursuing her degree in Social work. She is fluent in English and Spanish and has recently studied American Sign Language.

Sophie Rezendes

My name is Sophie Rezendes. I was born and raised in New Brunswick Canada, spent 9 years in Hawaii, and have been in Massachusetts for about 10 years. French is my first language. I am currently the Director of Early Learning at Cape Cod Children’s Place in Eastham. My husband of 18 years and I have two children together; a daughter who is 17 and a son who is 11. In my spare time, I enjoy going for walks in nature, reading, and spending time with family and friends.

Chrissy Rivers

Chrissy is a community activist with a wide range of experience, both lived and professional, in advocating for and serving families. As a mother of four children, three of whom are in the spectrum, she has spent many years as an outspoken champion for inclusion and equity. While she has worked in childcare in the past, Chrissy has spent most of her career in human services, supporting families of children with emotional, behavioral, and developmental needs. Although she spent a majority of her life in Cambridge, Chrissy has lived in various cities and towns in eastern Massachusetts, and currently resides in Middleboro. When she’s not hanging out with her friends and family (which includes 6 humans, 2 dogs, a cat and 13 chickens), she spends her time volunteering in various capacities, such as within the school system, as an elected town official, and many other community organizations, including Girl Scouts and the YMCA. Chrissy enjoys music, nature, Halloween, and basically all things millennial.