Campus & Community

A neighborly place for families

2 min read

It takes a village to raise a child, but if there’s no village handy, try Harvard Neighbors.

Two groups, one for babies up to 12 months, the other for toddlers up to 3 years, meet on alternate Mondays in Harvard Neighbors’ space in the basement of 17 Quincy St. It’s a place where parents can share experiences, activities, friendship, and refreshments. Occasionally, guest speakers come to talk about topics of interest to parents of young children.

But that’s not all Harvard Neighbors has to offer. The venerable institution, founded 106 years ago as a social organization for the wives of Harvard professors, has expanded far beyond its original charter.

For a small membership fee, you can take part in a wide variety of activities: play an instrument, sing in a choral group, tour a museum or a historic neighborhood, paint a picture, sew a quilt, write your autobiography, talk about books, play bridge or tennis, practice yoga, or chat in French, German, or Italian.

“We try to reach out to new people and connect them through our programs,” says Jacoba von Gimborn, Harvard Neighbors coordinator.

Von Gimborn came here from Germany 20 years ago, but still remembers what it’s like to be a newcomer without friends or connections. “Our interest groups are really about connecting with other human beings. Say someone is interested in going apple picking. We’ll tell them, ‘Sure, we can take you apple picking, and on the way you’ll meet some nice people.’”

For more information, call (617) 495-4313 or visit the Harvard Neighbors Web site at <a href=””></a>.