$2 million in Boston Resiliency Fund grants to support those most impacted by COVID-19
Continuing his commitment to an equitable recovery for City of Boston residents most impacted by COVID-19, Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Boston Resiliency Fund Steering Committee today announced the distribution of nearly $1.9 million to 15 organizations. In total, the Resiliency Fund has granted over $22 million to 295 nonprofit and local organizations to provide support to Boston's most vulnerable residents.
"The COVID-19 pandemic is still having major impacts on the City of Boston and our residents, and we will continue to use the Boston Resiliency Fund to support our communities with the greatest need," said Mayor Walsh. "As we enter the summer months, I am pleased that the Fund will help us support essential and vital services, including providing and delivering meals, expanding capacity in the domestic violence shelter system, supporting those in recovery, and more."
In total, 49 percent of grantee organizations are led by a person of color and 55 percent of grantee organizations are led by a woman. The Fund serves every neighborhood in Boston, but has focused on the neighborhoods hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic. A map showing the neighborhood impact of Boston Resiliency Fund grantees across the City of Boston can be found on the Fund's website. Of the new grants announced today, 43 percent are led by a person of color and 57 percent are led by a woman. Since the first round of fund distribution, the Fund has raised over $32.4 million from over 6,400 donors.
"Ellie Fund is grateful to the Boston Resiliency Fund for this crucial support of patients being treated for breast cancer amid this pandemic," said Meredith Mendelson, Executive Director of Ellie Fund. "This critical funding will ensure that our patients have safe and reliable transportation to treatment, and access to nutritious food. These services also lower their risk of exposure to COVID-19 because our supports are delivered to patients directly. The financial, physical and emotional hardships patients face during treatment are now exacerbated by COVID-19. BRF's funding will help us provide the extra support our patients need at this especially stressful and overwhelming time."
This week, grants will support the expansion of capacity in the domestic violence shelter system, the reopening of farmers markets, a campaign to close the SNAP gap, and additional supports for community-based organizations across the city. The grants range in size and will be awarded to the following organizations:
Boston Area Domestic Violence Partnership: Boston Area Domestic Violence Partnership will use the funding to expand capacity in the domestic violence shelter system over the summer and provide food, and emergency supplies to these families. Casa Myrna will serve as the lead partner for the group that includes: Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence, Center for Violence Prevention and Recovery at BIDMC of Boston, Domestic Violence Program at Boston Medical Center, Elizabeth Stone House, HarborCOV, HAVEN at MGH, Passageway at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Renewal House of the Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry, RESPOND, and Transition House.
Common Good Project: The Common-Good Project will use BRF funds to provide CSA shares to working-class and underemployed minority women, isolated seniors, and community members with disabilities in the Dorchester, Mattapan, and Greater Boston area. The grant does not cover community health worker salaries.
Community Outreach Ministries, Inc.: Community Outreach Ministries will use the BRF grant to help connect seniors to services and their broader support community through technology.
DRIVE Boston Community Resources, Inc.: DRIVE Boston will purchase grocery store and general gift cards, along with needed supplies, to support residents in need across the City.
Ellie Fund: Ellie Fund will use the funding to support and protect vulnerable breast cancer patients from COVID-19. Services include grocery support and delivery, prepared & delivered meals, and safe transportation to/from medical appointments
Family Aid Boston, Inc.: Family Aid Boston will use the funding to deliver food, supplies, and grocery gift cards weekly, directly to client apartments. Social workers will survey clients bi-weekly to assess needs and monitor health and housing status.
Faith Based Grassroots Addiction Recovery Coalition: Leaders of the Faith Based Grassroots Addiction Recovery Coalition (FBGARC), along with The Gavin Foundation & community partners, will provide support to people in recovery and returning citizens during the pandemic through:
Care Packages: Provide care packages to people entering sober homes, either through the probation/parole partnership or through other treatment programs. These care packages will include personal hygiene items, bedding, towels, flip-flops, and a grocery store gift card, and will be provided directly to the 14 participating sober homes in Boston.
Peer Support Meetings: Bring together local houses of worship and recovery service providers to facilitate outdoor peer support meetings. FBGARC plans on enlisting approximately 5-6 places of worship or community spaces, which would be equipped with picnic tables, sun umbrellas, podiums, PPE, and cleaning supplies. All meetings would comply with social distancing and other public health guidelines.
Friday Night Supper Club: For Boston's homeless population, the COVID-19 pandemic has been particularly devastating as food, shelter and medical care are even harder to secure during this health crisis. Friday Night Supper Club will use the funding to purchase groceries and supplies for their Friday Night Supper Program (FNSP), which serves nutritious takeaway meals at the Arlington Street Church in Boston to anyone in need.
Lena Park Community Development Corporation (CDC): Lena Park CDC will use the funding to secure essential goods and supplies, for 750 residents for a 4-week period. They are planning for the re-opening of the Community Engagement Center (contingent upon and in accordance with local, state, and federal approval/guidance) and will also prioritize funds to offer their broader, non-resident community access to their COVID-19 relief supports and services as they continue moving their lives forward as the community recovers from the devastating effects of the pandemic. The funding will support work to support Lena Park households with grocery store gift cards.
Mass Farmers Market: Mass Farmers Market will use the funding to provide access to farm fresh local fruit and vegetables for families, seniors, and individuals this summer. The program will provide weekly coupons to those in need regardless of immigration status, while supporting the local economy and urban agriculture. A map of farmers markets in the City, days and hours of operation, and available payment methods can be found here.
New England Community Services: New England Community Services will provide grocery gift cards to families in the community.
Project Bread: Project Bread will develop and implement a public awareness campaign to promote Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) enrollment and utilization, targeting SNAP gap households and other eligible but unenrolled families. These funds will provide operational and additional language support to the FoodSource Hotline and train community-based organizations and health centers to screen for SNAP eligibility and support with applications.
Voice of the Tabernacle Multi Service Center Inc (VTMC): VTMC would use the funding to support critical support services to Haitian refugee and immigrant youth and emergency housing assistance. This program is heavily utilized by unaccompanied youth who need assistance in finding stable, long-term housing in culturally-connected communities.
We Are Better Together Warren Daniel Hairston Project: We Are Better Together (WABT) will use the funding to purchase food gift cards and groceries. Access to food/financial insecurity is a significant need for their families, many of whom are seniors or single caregivers caring for children due to the loss of a parent/caregiver to homicide and/or incarceration. These families often face barriers in mainstream supportive services.
West End House: The West End House Boys and Girls Club in Allston will use the funding to continue their food delivery program to families they serve.