A new art installation adorning our building honors three individuals who have made an impact on West End House. Third in this series, but occupying a central place in all of our hearts, is lifelong West End House member Dawnn Ashley Jaffier.

Improving the lives of Boston youth was Dawnn’s passion. Before becoming an innocent victim of gun violence, Dawnn was a mentor and role model for hundreds of young people. Though only 26 years old, Dawnn embarked on a promising career in Boston’s non-profit community including at West End House, Playworks, City Year and the Boys & Girls Club of Boston. She understood firsthand the important role non-profit organizations play within a community and devoted her life to giving back to others.

To honor her memory, West End House hosts two annual events, The Light of Dawnn Awards and the Biggest Fun Ever! Created in partnership with the MA Nonprofit Network, Highland Street Foundation, John Hancock and The Foundation To Be Named Later, The Light of Dawnn Awards recognizes non-profit professionals who demonstrate compassion and unwavering commitment to service. Biggest Fun Ever! an event organized by her family, friends and WEH alumni, pays tribute to Dawnn’s legacy with a huge block party full of music, dancing, face painting, a basketball tournament, and community celebration.

Dawnn’s legacy of service, leadership and strength lives on in the Allston-Brighton community, where her colleagues, peers, friends and family continue to carry out her work for social justice and youth empowerment.

Read about the other two figures honored in our beautiful new installation:

As we close out this series of posts about our beautiful new installation, we would like to thank once again Boston Police Department Lt. Mike O’Hara for starting the project while assigned to D-14 Brighton, the Ringer Park Tribute Committee for executing on the vision, the Edward Ingersoll Browne Fund and George B. Henderson Foundation for funding the project and Selbert Perkins in Watertown for designing the installation. We are thrilled to serve as the home for this inspiring masterpiece.