COVID 19 Fund banner image

COVID-19 Response Fund

at the Boston Foundation

The COVID-19 Response Fund has been established by a coalition of business, government and philanthropic partners to rapidly deploy flexible resources to organizations in Greater Boston that are working with communities that are disproportionately affected by the coronavirus outbreak.

About the COVID-19 Response Fund

Hosted by the Boston Foundation, The COVID-19 Response Fund awards one-time operating grants on a rolling basis to non-profits whose operations in support of seniors, children, immigrants, workers and other vulnerable populations have been stressed by the outbreak.  The Fund is designed to be adaptable in its goals and focus, which will evolve as community members and nonprofits in our region share their needs. 

Given the immediate needs within our Greater Boston catchment area, the Fund is currently focused on providing general operating support grants to nonprofits whose operations address the basic needs of vulnerable populations that are under additional strain due to the pandemic.

The Boston Foundation encourages institutions, companies and other funders to contribute to the Fund, which will work in partnership with the City of Boston and other funders to ensure the Fund has maximum reach and effectiveness. In addition to offering an opportunity to contribute to the Fund, the Boston Foundation is also urging its own donors to look for opportunities to support nonprofits directly by making general operating support grants to organizations they wish to help.

Please note: This is a fluid situation. We expect that there will undoubtedly be a crucial need for funds to aid in the rebuilding efforts and any unanticipated community needs many months from now. We will continue to update this page, and will evolve the structure and purpose of the fund to respond to what we are hearing and learning directly from the community.


 Other funds and resources

The COVID-19 Response Fund is just one of a number of resources that civic and philanthropic organizations are creating to support the needs of individuals, nonprofits and other organizations in Greater Boston and Massachusetts.

Visit our Other COVID-19 Response Efforts page for a listing of other fundraising and nonprofit support efforts, including funds from the City of Boston and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay/Merrimack Valley targeting immediate needs.

For general questions about the Response Fund, please direct your question to l8BFgJ5ID1FVStXIXWAbiTDz869nKm1hjf+MOo9XSXql1yeGRYVDXKFmJNeolsBT/Nu19F/rausd42R0Cy0g/AvR6DcWfd9BRt0Fp3tlVZCF/taHn5Lyq3d7HaeABJdF0lZaJBbo2mYmImb0ARHYhtMFUDmLdS6RMjeesPuYVYMbdu7wREtXeLc7qrEk21yF

April 6: Boston Foundation announces 18 new grants as COVID-19 Response Fund tops $4 million raised

March 31: Boston Foundation announces first grants from COVID-19 Response Fund

March 13: Press release on the COVID-19 Response Fund launch

A running list of grantees can be found here

Information for donors:

The Boston Foundation is actively seeking donors to the COVID-19 Response Fund. Your donations, large and small, will be targeted directly to organizations working most closely with communities feeling the greatest impact from the coronavirus outbreak - including seniors, children, residents without access to paid sick days, healthcare and gig economy workers, communities of color, immigrants and people with disabilities.

In its current phase, the fund is providing general operating support grants to these organizations. The Fund's grantee portfolio will be regularly reviewed to ensure grants are supporting racial equity and are reaching the communities of greatest need in the Boston Foundation's catchment area.

For interested philanthropic and business partners, please contact our Assistant Director of Philanthropy, Thomas Bentley, at BLJUMVZ2UXsgspVLAT8WPdO3QK8yoN2NviGUUeyL7n47o7851ZiAJmP7ngV4PlO5FOk6rMIssRP4pSF737H4tRihuDpCJBahPXwvQaBYwvDcEcdaMtnYHccrlrvexxsAJ03uk910WbZlCahtFPiA5wpwGtkbr/qWZwFLAPiuMSvy7zw6fbgoSBJPP00mFUBap/m1RvkqQ5uBEY9N1wP0zg== or 617-338-1778.

How to donate:

To make donations by credit card, click on the donate links on this page. (Please note: Minimum credit card donation is $50.)

To donate by check in any amount, make your check payable to "Boston Foundation, Inc." with "COVID-19 Response Fund" in the memo field and mail to:

The Boston Foundation
Fund Administration
75 Arlington Street, 3rd Floor
Boston, MA 02116

To donate from a Donor Advised Fund, make your donation to The Boston Foundation and write "For COVID-19 Response Fund" in the grant purpose.

To inquire about transferring other types of assets, please contact our Fund Administration office at (617) 338-2213 or email gEeAEPj5pe88rf8reRWQE1R8TWYY80awdglCCGaYzjpHEQzUI5/9QppMIOM9KCEyhcHKteuBRMMgx/R7/pI/pwTL10cFJzLZ2ugMkMT2nnc85llGNrhpToPHbzGy4Y6cLJxDxl48hhkHRdTHJGkBHyar1kM/CPerQyHJ27pv7R35b8t2QKbgKrUP8+rYLFk/.

FAQs for Donors:

To make donations by credit card:
Click on the donate links on this page. (Please note: Minimum credit card donation is $50.)

To donate by check in any amount:
Make your check payable to "Boston Foundation, Inc." with "COVID-19 Response Fund" in the memo field and mail to:
The Boston Foundation
Fund Administration
75 Arlington Street, 3rd Floor
Boston, MA 02116

To donate from a Donor Advised Fund:
Make your donation to The Boston Foundation and write "For COVID-19 Response Fund" in the grant purpose.

To donate other types of assets:
To inquire about transferring other types of assets, please contact our Fund Administration office at (617) 338-2213 or email gEeAEPj5pe88rf8reRWQE1R8TWYY80awdglCCGaYzjpHEQzUI5/9QppMIOM9KCEyhcHKteuBRMMgx/R7/pI/pwTL10cFJzLZ2ugMkMT2nnc85llGNrhpToPHbzGy4Y6cLJxDxl48hhkHRdTHJGkBHyar1kM/CPerQyHJ27pv7R35b8t2QKbgKrUP8+rYLFk/.

To ensure that we can coordinate and share resources as quickly as possible, donors may not restrict their grants to an individual grantee. If you have a specific organization you would like to support, we encourage you to give directly to that organization.

No. This Fund is not intended to be the only vehicle to give funds to nonprofits working at the frontlines of the COVID-19 outbreak. You are encouraged to give directly to organizations you may have supported in the past or nonprofits you know are addressing needs in your community. This fund is another vehicle through which those needs will be addressed. You can learn about other options from the CIty of Boston, the United Way, and other community foundations on our Other Resources page.

The COVID-19 Response Fund will prioritize funding for organizations in the Boston Foundation's defined catchment area. Donors seeking to support organizations outside of that geographic area are encouraged to make direct gifts or reach out to that area's community foundation for assistance in getting resources targeted to that region.

Our resources for processing smaller donations are limited, so we require a $50 minimum on credit card donations. To give smaller amounts, you may donate by check or we encourage you to directly donate to community nonprofits of your choice.


Information for those Seeking Grants from the Fund:

To be considered for a grant from the COVID-19 Response Fund at the Boston Foundation, please review the information below. Note: We will update the fund information frequently, especially as the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic rapidly over time.  Only nonprofits located in and serving communities in the Boston Foundation catchment area are eligible for grants at this time. The FAQs below highlight the current focus and restrictions on grant eligibility.

Given the immediate needs in the 80 communities within our Greater Boston catchment area, the Fund is currently focused on providing general operating support grants to nonprofits whose operations address the basic needs of vulnerable populations that are under additional strain due to the pandemic.

Grants are being made on a rolling, weekly basis. A running list of grantees is posted on our COVID-19 Response Fund grantees page.

To limit the burden on nonprofits, there is no formal application at this time. Instead we are asking interested nonprofits to fill out a short form providing basic information about your organization and work to address the basic needs of vulnerable populations impacted by the pandemic.

We encourage you to complete this form if you are a nonprofit organization that is authentically connected and providing coronavirus related relief to Greater Boston's most vulnerable populations including seniors, children, residents without access to paid sick days, healthcare and gig economy workers, communities of color, immigrants and people with disabilities. If you have already emailed us at l8BFgJ5ID1FVStXIXWAbiTDz869nKm1hjf+MOo9XSXql1yeGRYVDXKFmJNeolsBT/Nu19F/rausd42R0Cy0g/AvR6DcWfd9BRt0Fp3tlVZCF/taHn5Lyq3d7HaeABJdF0lZaJBbo2mYmImb0ARHYhtMFUDmLdS6RMjeesPuYVYMbdu7wREtXeLc7qrEk21yF, you do not need to complete this form. However, we may reach out to you for more information.

FAQs for Nonprofits:

The Boston Foundation is asking nonprofits interested in general operating support to fill out the form here to request funds. However, it should be noted that this fund is designed to make grants only to 501(c)3 non-profit organizations, and groups fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)3 organizations.

In general, we will be making general operating support grants of up to $25,000 in this round of funding. The number of grants will be determined by the funds available and anticipated current and future needs of the nonprofit community.

At this time, grants will be awarded based on two general criteria.

  • Grants should fund organizations that are authentically connected to Greater Boston's (TBF catchment area) most vulnerable residents including seniors, children, residents without access to paid sick days, healthcare and gig economy workers, communities of color, immigrants and people with disabilities.
  • Grants should support these organizations' capacity to provide food and address other immediate basic needs caused by closures and cancellations related to COVID-19.

While the Fund will primarily focus on providing rapid, general operating grants to nonprofits whose operations address the basic needs of vulnerable populations that are under additional strain due to the outbreak, there will be a crucial need for funds to aid in the rebuilding efforts and unanticipated community needs many months from now. Given this, we plan to hold back a percentage of funds available to be allocated at a later date.

The Fund partners understand the COVID-19 pandemic is having and will continue to have a significant impact on individuals and families in Greater Boston. On behalf of the Fund partners, the Boston Foundation will work to move resources as quickly as possible to community-based organizations that are directly supporting local families and residents who are most affected.

But unfortunately, we cannot offer direct funds to individuals at this time.

The COVID-19 Response Fund will prioritize funding for organizations in the Boston Foundation's defined catchment area. Donors seeking to support organizations outside of that geographic area are encouraged to make direct gifts or reach out to that area's community foundation for assistance in getting resources targeted to that region.

We expect grants from this Fund will be made on a rolling weekly basis. We publish the names of grantees and more information on a regular basis on this page and will issue regular press releases to announce milestones and updates from the Fund.