Boston Foundation grants address regional needs in a challenging time, with broad nonprofit support

Board announces $25,699,600 in grants to Greater Boston nonprofits

December 18, 2008

Boston – The Boston Foundation’s December announcement of grants to regional nonprofits continues the support of organizations on the front lines during a time of economic challenges and government cutbacks. This follows grants announced in an unusual forum held in October to bring together leaders and service providers to the region’s most vulnerable residents. At that gathering, the Foundation announced $500,000 to organizations that provide fuel and food supports, a distribution later expanded to more than $750,000 as the result of support provided by Boston Foundation donors.

Grants announced today include grants to the Greater Boston Food Bank, hopeFound, the Massachusetts Association of Older Americans and Project Bread: The Walk for Hunger, all of which address especially vulnerable populations, a rising concern about hunger as food process continue to rise, and are designed to continue to build capacity for organizations that serve those in need.

Housing issues are addressed through grants in the wake of an ongoing crisis that includes dramatic increases in the number of foreclosures and continued high prices for housing in the region. The Massachusetts Association of Community Development Corporations receives a grant to strengthen its ability to provide advocacy and organizational support for the region’s CDCs. Additional grants have been made to the Allston-Brighton CDC to support reorganization and to support its exploration of a possible merger with the Fenway Community CDC. Mattapan Community Development Corporation received a grant to develop housing for Mattapan residents. The Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation also received a grant to support its efforts to create affordable housing.


The Foundation’s strategic priorities are also reflected in the list of grants awarded today, including education.  The grants reflect the Foundation’s support for the idea of an education pipeline that can provide a seamless system from early childhood through to workforce development. Early childhood programs receiving grants include the Boston Alliance for Early Education; Jumpstart, a program that trains college students to deliver early childhood programming through one-on-one relationships; and Strategies for Children, Inc., a policy and advocacy organization.

College access and college success have been an important part of the pipeline strategy, and organizations receiving grants to this end include Bottom Line, Inc.; Posse Foundation; the Boston Higher Education Partnership, Inc; the Higher Education Resource Center; and Massachusetts Bay Community College.

The Boston Foundation is committed to creating a diverse range of options for students and families, including a grant of $100,000 to the Campaign for Catholic Schools. This is an initiative charged with rebuilding and revitalizing Catholic elementary education through the creation of the Pope John Paul II Academy in Dorchester, which includes a five-campus network of schools.

Arts and culture

The Boston Foundation continues to view arts and culture in the region as an important focus. Arts grants include $100,000 to ArtsBoston Inc. to launch a new online ticketing and marketing site for performing arts organizations, museums, art cinemas, historic sites and the presenters of free performance events. A grant to the Boston landmarks Orchestra will support the free summer series the orchestra provides at the hatch Shell on the Esplanade, with the goal of building a large and diverse audience for music performance.

The Foundation also continues its work of supporting efforts to promote healthy lives for regional residents in the face of a rising tide of chronic preventable disease. A grant to Body by Brandy 4 Kidz provides general support for a new organization designed to teach children the benefits of healthy bodies and healthy lives. Fitness Forward Foundation also received a grant to encourage young people to live well by integrating scientifically-based evidence, innovative technologies and targeted social marketing strategies to reverse the dangerous rise on chronic disease, obesity sand mental illness among youth.

AIDS prevention and care

Earlier in December, the Boston Foundation announced a set of grants to key institutions engaged in HIV prevention efforts in Greater Boston. These grants are designed to address health disparities recently articulated by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health regarding the impact of HIV/AIDS on communities of color in Massachusetts:  The rate of infection is 11 times higher for blacks and 9 times higher for Latinos than whites in the state.  Organizations receiving grants include: CAB Health & Recovery Services; Cambridge Cares About AIDS; Center for Community Health, Education & Research; Centro Latino de Chelsea; Girls Incorporated of Lynn; and Uphams Corner Health Center.

Out of the Blue grant

Each quarter, the Boston Foundation makes an Out of the Blue grant of $75,000—unsolicited and unrestricted—to an area nonprofit. These grants are designed to recognize exceptional leadership in regional nonprofits. This quarter, the grant was made to Pathways to Wellness, a public health provider which address the needs of low-income, chronically and terminally ill patients utilizing complementary medicine, including acupuncture, Chinese medicine, massage and yoga. The organization was founded as an AIDS Care project and continues to care for many people living with HIV/AIDS, although it has grown to care for a wide variety of clients. It provides services on a sliding scale and operates out of the South End Community Health Center, with seven satellite clinics around the state.


The Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the nation.  In 2008, the Foundation and its donors made close to $79 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and received gifts of $113 million, bringing its assets to $838 million.  The Foundation is made up of some 900 separate charitable funds established by donors either for the general benefit of the community or for special purposes.  The Boston Foundation also serves as a major civic leader, provider of information, convener, and sponsor of special initiatives designed to address the community’s and region’s most pressing challenges.  For more information about the Boston Foundation, visit or call 617-338-1700.

In addition to $6,341,250 in grants from Discretionary Funds, the Foundation also distributed $1,301,575 in grants from Designated Funds and $18,056,775 in Donor Advised Funds.

Discretionary grants are made from the Boston Foundation’s Permanent Fund for Boston, a collection of unrestricted gifts made to the Foundation to be disbursed to nonprofit groups working to meet the needs of Greater Boston residents across a broad range of issues. Donor Advised grants are made from funds established by donors who want to play an active role in selecting the organization and programs they wish to support. Designated grants are made from funds established by donors to support one or more of their favorite nonprofit organizations in perpetuity.


The following is a complete list of the Boston Foundation’s Discretionary Grants approved by the Board of Directors on December 18.


ArtsBoston, Inc. - $100,000 for the launch of ArtsBoston Gateway, an online ticketing and marketing site for performing Arts organizations, museums, art museums, cinemas, historic sites and the presenters of free performance events.

Boston Children’s Chorus - $50,000, in support of strategic growth.

Boston Landmarks Orchestra - $50,000 for the Landmarks Festival, a free summer series of evening concerts at the Hatch Shell on the Esplanade.

Massachusetts Association for Arts, Sciences and Humanities Education, Inc. - $40,000 in support of general operations and work on behalf of the arts and cultural sector.

Museum of African American History, Inc. - $50,000 for support of its community outreach and volunteer program that engages volunteers, college interns and docents in the work of the museum.

National Arts and Learning Collaborative - $40,000 to support capacity building efforts and the implementation of its strategic plan.

New Repertory Theatre, Inc. - $55,000 to support its efforts to build capacity to raise funds from diverse sources.

Raw Art Works, Inc. - $50,000 to support its efforts to attract, develop and retain key staff.

Theater Offensive, Inc. - $50,000 to strengthen its management capacity.



Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders - $25,000 to support a public awareness campaign focused on increasing support for GLBT rights.

Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition - $25,000 to develop awareness and to educate policy makers about the needs of transgender communities.

MassEquality Education Fund - $25,000 support the Equality Agenda, which is focused on LGBT policy issues.

Massachusetts Voter Education Network, Inc. - $50,000 to support the Democracy for Nonprofits project.

John F. Kennedy Family Service Center, Inc. - $20,000 to support its efforts to serve low income Latinos in Charlestown.

Neighbor to Neighbor - $20,000 to help recruit potential leaders from low-income communities and develop their skills as activists, organizers and leaders.

Commonwealth Seminar - $30,000 to help increase the participation by communities of color and immigrant communities in the legislative process.

National Black College Alliance, Inc. - $35,000 to a civic leadership program for young African-American professionals in Boston.

Boston Municipal Research Bureau - $20,000 to help evaluate the State-Boston retirement system and its future impact on the City of Boston.

CEOs for Cities - $20,000 for general support.

John F. Kennedy Family Library Foundation, Inc. - $50,000 to support its Extending Civic Engagement Among Diverse Communities program.

Oiste - $50,000 to support LaVoz del Pueblo, which seeks to strengthen the infrastructure of OISTE and formalize its advocacy and mobilization agenda.

University of Massachusetts Boston - $50,000 to support the Commonwealth Compact.



Accion U.S.A., Inc. - $50,000 to expand education, outreach and loan programs for the Brazilian community in Eastern Massachusetts.

Associated Industries of Massachusetts Foundation, Inc. - $50,000 for the Global Massachusetts 2015 program to address workforce development issues.

Massachusetts Technology Collaborative - $125,000 for the Massachusetts Life Sciences Collaborative.

Massachusetts Transportation Investment Coalition - $70,000 to help develop programs and policies that enable the state to secure the continued economic vitality of the region.



Boston Alliance for Early Education - $50,000 to promote and support quality early education for Boston’s children through advocacy.

Jumpstart - $60,000 for general operating support and for the School Readiness for All program.

Strategies for Children, Inc. - $40,000 to support state-level advocacy for early childhood education including universal kindergarten and full-day kindergarten.

Boston Foundation - $80,000 to conduct a follow-up study of Boston charter, pilot and traditional school performance.

Boston Full Service Schools Roundtable - $50,000 for its Building a Foundation for Policy Change program.

MassInsight Education and Research Institute - $75,000 to support the Mass Math and Science Initiative.

Teach for America, Inc. - $50,000 to build its Boston Alumni network as a force for system change.

Campaign for Catholic Schools - $100,000 to support efforts to increase academic achievement at Dorchester’s Pope John Paul II Academy campuses.

Massachusetts Public School Performance Corporation - $50,000 to help expand its data-driven assessment model to seven new schools.

Boston Foundation – $80,000 to conduct an analysis of the statewide results of the Achieving the Dream initiative.

Bottom Line, Inc. – $75,000 for its Boston Success program which provides one-on-one tutoring and support for BPS students as they go to college.

Boston Higher Education Partnership, Inc. – $75,000 to support a study that explores variations in student performance at institutions of higher learning.

Higher Education Resource Center – $25,000 to support the Passport Program, a two-year college preparatory program.

Massachusetts Bay Community College – $40,000 to launch the Young Men of Color program supporting newly enrolled students.

Posse Foundation – $$50,000 for the Posse Scholars training program.



Center for Law and Education, Inc. - $50,000 to help promote the Family School-Level Change Initiative to develop family engagement policies and practices for implementation across the district.

Charles Street AME Roxbury Renaissance Center – $85,000 to support IMPACT, a school turnaround strategy aimed at cultivating parents and community leaders.

Sociedad Latina, Inc. - $50,000 for the launch of year 13 Campaign, to drive curricula and education reform in the Boston Public Schools.



Big Sister Association of Greater Boston – $100,000 to help expand the Mentoring Academy and to increase mentors of color for girls.

Build the Out-Of-School Time Network – $50,000 to support the Access For All program, a technical assistance program for youth with disabilities.

Generation Excel – $30,000 to help staff a program that serves high-risk youth in middle schools and DYS facilities.

Boston Learning Center, Inc. – $25,000 to support the hiring of a lead trainer to support professional staff development.

YMCA of Greater Boston – $45,000 to better align the Y’s programs with the curriculum of the Boston Public Schools.

Boston After School and Beyond, Inc. – $100,000 to support core operations and build capacity for its initiative Partners for Student Success and the Teen Initiative.

Boston Debate League Incorporated – $35,000 to expand its programs to six Boston public schools.

City Schools, Inc. – $35,000 to support its Director of Operations position.

ROCA, Inc. – $75,000 to support its High Risk Youth Intervention Project promoting safer neighborhoods through community police collaboration and youth intervention work.

South End/Lower Roxbury Youth Workers Alliance – $25,000 to support core organizing work and replication for its youth- and street workers program.



Body By Brandy 4 Kidz– $40,000 for general support of a fitness program designed to teach kids the benefits of health bodies and healthy lives.

Boston Foundation/Boston Community AIDS Partnership Fund – $50,000 to make grants to support HIV prevention programs.

Greater Boston Legal Services, Inc. – $100,000 to to sup[port pre-lawsuit negotiations to provide improved access to health care services for the physically disabled.

Justice Resource Institute, Inc. – $50,000 to support an integrated strategy to address the needs of LGBT youth in Greater Boston who are aging out of services of the Department of Children and Families.

Massachusetts Public Health Association – $20,000 to support the Community Health Worker Development Program.

National Alliance on Mental Illness of Massachusetts, Inc. – $20,000 to build capacity for the Greater Boston Consumer Action Network and its NAMI Latino affiliate.

University of Massachusetts Lowell – $30,000 to help support environmental interventions for asthma programs.

Boston Public health Commission – $125,000 for Breaking the Cycle, a hospital-based violence intervention program.

Boston Center for Independent Living, Inc. – $50,000 to support Organizing for people with Disabilities Project, which seeks to affect change and access in health care and civic institutions.

Chelsea Jewish Nursing Home, Inc. – $75,000 to support program development of the Leonard Florence Center for Living Green House skilled nursing familiarity.

Children’s Hospital Corporation – $35,000 for the Children’s mental health Campaign.

Ellis memorial & Eldredge House, Inc. – $30,000 to support capacity building.

Greater Boston Food Bank, Inc. – $40,000 to support additional staff needed for its participation in the Hunger in Massachusetts 2009 Survey.

Greater Lynn Senior Services, Inc. – $15,000 for a pilot of its Elder Mobile Mental Health Project, delivering services to elders in their homes.

hopeFound – $40,000 for a pilot program serving those at risk of homelessness and those who are homeless through recovery, employment training and housing.

Massachusetts Association of Older Americans – $40,000 for the Elder Economic Security Improvement Initiative.

Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children – $30,000 for the Boston site of the Connecting Families program which supports families at high risk of abusing or neglecting their children.

Mystic Valley Elder Services, Inc. – $40,000 for its Connect-a-Ride Alliance, which works to increase access to transportation for those in need in the Mystic valley Region.

Pathways to Wellness – $75,000 for general support through the Boston Foundation’s Out of the Blue grants program.

Project Bread – The Walk for Hunger, Inc. – $40,000 for support of its Latino Hunger Prevention Campaign.

Rosie’s Place, Inc. – $20,000 to support a legislative campaign that seeks to strengthen family preservation and timely reunification of families involved with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families.

South Boston Neighborhood House, Inc. – $30,000 for its Capacity Building to Insure Long Term Financial Health campaign.

United South End Settlements – $25,000 for its Outcome Measurement Project, which is designed to provide detailed data about its programs.

YWCA Boston – $40,000 to support a comprehensive strategic plan.



Citizens’ Housing and Planning Association, Inc. – $60,000 to support its continued advocacy related to foreclosure issues, housing resources and housing policy.

Massachusetts Association of Community Development Corporations – $75,000 for the Local Investments for Tomorrow Campaign.

University of Massachusetts Boston – $75,000 to the McCormack Center for Social Policy for Bread, Butter and Bricks: Meeting the Economic and Housing Needs of Low-Income Families in Communities.

Allston-Brighton Community Development Corporation – $90,000 in a two-part grant to provide general support and to support costs associated with an exploration of a merger with the Fenway Community Development Corporation.

Boston Affordable Housing Coalition, Inc. – $40,000 to help preserve and improve at-risk HUD buildings as permanent affordable housing.

Hearth, Inc. – $100,000 for capacity building for an organization that serves elders who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Development Corporation – $30,000 to support its Three Initiatives for an Equitable Community project.

Metropolitan Area Planning Council – $50,000 to support the implantation phase of its MetroFutures: Making a Greater Boston Region program.

New Ecology, Inc. – $60,000 for its Green Buildings for Community Based Nonprofits and their Constituents: Web-based Community Green Building and Energy Assessment Tools for Affordable Housing programs.

Boston Bar Foundation, Inc. – $60,000 to support a project designed to test the cost-effectiveness of providing legal counsel in cases of housing eviction.

Massachusetts Union of Public Housing Tenants, Inc. – $55,000 to help train and empower residents to advocate for the needs for their developments.

Ella J. Baker House, Inc. – $100,000 to support organizational development efforts in 2009.



Boston Foundation – $22,500 to provide 15 grants of $1,500 to organizations featured in its annual report, Stories from the City.

Massachusetts Nonprofit Network – $125,000 to support its Nonprofit Awareness and Advocacy program.

Boston Foundation – $100,000 for support of the Vision Fund, a small grants program that helps nonprofit organizations strengthen their capacity, connect to constituents, test model programs and undertake other short-term capacity building activities.

Boston Foundation – $180,000 for annual membership dues in 2009.

Center for Effective Philanthropy, Inc. – $13,750 to survey applicants denied funding by the Boston Foundation in recent years to inform the Foundation’s future planning for grantmaking policies and practices.

Cradles to Crayons – $30,000 to support its Activate Boston! Program.

GreenLight Fund, Inc. – $100,000 to help find high performing nonprofit models in other areas of the country and brings them to Boston.

Northeastern University Center for Urban and Regional Policy – $50,000 to support CURP’s study, Improving the Effectiveness and Efficiency of Small Nonprofit Organizations in Greater Boston.



Charles River Conservancy, Inc. – $50,000 to support the Swimmable Charles program.

Zoo New England – $75,000 to support brand and capacity building.

A Better City – $50,000 for the Sustainability and Climate Change Leadership Initiative.

Save the Harbor, Save the Bay, Inc. – $100,000 to publish a status report on the beaches and to provide technical assistance program funds to beach friends groups.



MAB Community Services, Inc. – $50,000 to support the Vocational Education program for adults and students with disabilities.

Massachusetts Workforce Alliance – $35,000 support organizational development.

Metro South/West Regional Employment Board, Inc. – $50,000 to support the Health Care learning Network.

Boston Education Skills and Training Corp. – $40,000 to increase the number of African Americans in the hospitality industry.

Strive/Boston Employment Service Inc. – $50,000 to support a training and employment program for ex-offenders.

Community Resources for Justice, Inc. – $60,000 to support staffing and research capacity at the crime and Justice Institute.

Crittenton Women’s Union – $50,000 for the Hot Jobs Connection Program which helps low-income women access the necessary training to enter careers that pay self-sufficiency wages.

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute Inc. – $40,000 for research and advocacy around the issue of barriers to employment for people with criminal histories.

Mother Caroline Academy and Education Center – $25,000 to support its adult education program.

My Turn, Inc. – $50,000 for a workforce development program for out-of-school youths.

Saint Francis House, Inc. – $50,000 for its Moving Ahead Program, a 14-week vocational and social rehabilitation program for clients.

Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, Inc. – $50,000 to support its Turnaround Plan for capacity Building Initiative, which seeks to redefine the organization’s identity and confirm its mission of empowering communities of color.

X-Cel, Inc. – $30,000 to support its College prep Program, which helps students prepare for and attain access to a college education.

American Red Cross of Massachusetts Bay – $50,000 for Bridging the Gap, which seeks to prepare Greater Boston’s immigrant community for careers in healthcare.

English for New Bostonians – $150,000 for general support.

St. Mark Community Education Program – $25,000 to develop curriculum and assessment tools.

YMCA of Greater Boston – $40,000 to support its English language and Job Skills training Continuum, which provides ESOL/job training skills for immigrants.