Boston Foundation announces $19.2M in quarterly grants at June 25th Board Meeting

Lynn’s Raw Arts to receive $75K Out of the Blue Grant

June 25, 2009

Boston – The creation of a new network including the region’s design cluster, support for innovative schools shown to help close the achievement gap between white and minority students, and an ambitious program designed to connect the region’s cultural leaders with new and more diverse audiences are among the grants announced by the Board of Directors at the Boston Foundation’s June meeting. More than $19 million in grants were announced at the meeting.

“Grants that build on research have a particular power, and this set of grants reflects a year of seminal research in education,” said Paul S. Grogan, President and CEO of the Boston Foundation. “The report drawn from the Indicators Project,  Boston’s Education Pipeline: A Report Card , stresses critical ideas that show high impact and great promise, from early childhood education through college access, and our grants follow this data by strengthening the pipeline where we can confidently expect results to follow.”

He cited grants for the region’s charter schools and other educational reform strategies, building on the research contained in the Understanding Boston report,  Informing the Debate , released in January, which established the power of charter and pilot schools to close the achievement gap between white and minority students. Among the recipients were the Massachusetts Center for Charter School Excellence, which received $75,000; the organization Massachusetts 2020 for $100,000 to strengthen its work through Expanded Learning Time; and a $50,000 grant to enable the Bay State Banner to raise awareness in Boston’s minority neighborhoods about college opportunities.

Out of the Blue grant to Raw Art Works
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 Raw Art Works, an organization founded in 1988 that provides arts-based youth development programs to young people in Lynn through a number of arts programs. These include a state-of-the-art film school; single-sex art groups for teenagers; a college and career support program; and other mentoring and leadership development programs.

“Raw Art Works has taken a great idea and developed it into a strong organization widely honored locally and nationally for its innovative and effective work,” said Grogan. “In challenging times, it has doubled its budget and built an impressive staff. It stands nearly alone in its efforts to address the many challenges that face young people in Lynn, and offers an exemplary model of how an organization can grow while keeping focused on its goals.”

He cited Raw Art Works co-founder and Artistic Director Mary Flannery and Executive Director Kit Jenkins for establishing an organization that can transform the lives of young people—and then sustaining it and scaling it up over the years to serve a larger clientele without compromising the original vision.

Today Raw Art Works serves more than 550 students a year, including 200 in its summer program—and sends fully 90 percent of its seniors on to college. In addition to the nurture and service it provides to its students, Raw Arts bought a four-story building in downtown Lynn in 2007 and developed an art gallery as well as programming that reaches out to engage members of the surrounding community.

Nonprofit sector
At a time when resources for nonprofit organizations has declined nationally, grants to the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network and to the Boston University School of Management are designed to bolster the long-term vitality of the sector. The Network is a state-wide association of nonprofits, created with leadership provided by the Boston Foundation, to strengthen the sector through advocacy, public awareness and capacity building for member organizations. The University grant is designed to strengthen the Institute for Nonprofit Management, an executive education certificate program created to prepare the next generation of nonprofit managers and leaders.

New professional community
A grant of $40,000 to Massachusetts College of Art and Design will help support the college’s Designing an Industry/Designing the Future project. This initiative aims to identify and build a cohesive network among the professionals who comprise the Massachusetts design cluster and to help it cultivate ties to other regional industries and to its international design peers. The goal is to raise awareness of the depth and accomplishments of Massachusetts designers, building collaborative linkage and industry-wide strategies to brand the commonwealth as a center of the design industry and thereby promote the economic potential of the cluster.

“Massachusetts College of Art and Design has created a unique opportunity to raise awareness of the great strength in the Massachusetts design community that has not been sufficiently visible in the past,” said Grogan. “This project enriches the state’s workforce identity and will help encourage economic development and can serve to attract more of the talented and trained professionals we need to thrive.”

In addition to $4,400,000 in grants from Discretionary Funds, the Foundation also distributed $6,700,000 in grants from Designated Funds and $8,100,000 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 Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the nation, with assets of $763 million.  In Fiscal Year 2008, the Foundation and its donors made close to $79 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and received gifts of $113 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.

The following is a complete list of the Boston Foundation’s Discretionary Grants approved by the Board of Directors on June 25.

First Night, Inc. - $60,000 for general operating support.
Huntington Theatre, Inc - $75,000 for its Building Community Through Technology project which seeks to engage new and existing audiences.
Inquilinos Boricuas en Accion, Inc. - $50,000 to raise awareness of Villa Victoria Center for the Arts.
Museum of Fine Arts - $125,000 to bring under-represented populations to the museum and survey visitors’ needs and interests.
Opera Boston - $30,000 for general operating support.
EdVestors - $25,000 to expand arts education in Boston Public Schools.
Raw Art Works, Inc. - $75,000 for general operating support.
Zumix, Inc. - $50,000 for general operating support.

Family Equality Council - $10,000 to address the unique needs of LGBT parents and families in Boston.
Chelsea Collaborative - $40,000 to support a community engagement campaign.
Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health, Inc. - $30,000 to support a training program for immigrants and other low-wage workers.
Massachusetts Communities Action Network - $75,000 for general operating support for a coalition of community improvement organizations working for economic and social justice.
Massachusetts Immigrant and refugee Advocacy Coalition, Inc. - $75,000 for general operating support to help protect the rights of immigrants and refugees statewide.
Boston Foundation/Initiative for Diverse Civic Leadership - $100,000 to advance civic leadership among immigrant communities and communities of color.
Hyde Square Task Force, Inc. - $50,000 to support a campaign to implement a new civics curriculum and secure a holistic health and wellness curriculum in Boston Public Schools.
Public Policy Institute - $50,000 to involve the public in a discussion about tax reform and new revenue ideas.

Asian Community Development Corporation - $70,000 to link information about economic opportunity generated by local development.
Boston Earned Income Tax Credit Action Coalition - $40,000 for general operating expenses.
Massachusetts Association for Community Action - $70,000 to identify and implement new asset formation services for low-income people.
Massachusetts College of Art and Design - $40,000 to build a network among the state’s design cluster.

Children’s Investment Fund - $75,000 to assess early childhood care and Out of School Time facilities needs in Boston and the state.
Family Nurturing Center of Massachusetts, Inc. - $150,000 to support the City of Boston’s family support initiative to promote school readiness.
Education Pioneers - $40,000 to recruit Education Pioneer Fellows in area education nonprofits.
Massachusetts 2020 - $100,000 for general operating support to promote expanded learning time in Massachusetts.
Freedom House, Inc. - $50,000 to promote educational achievement and civic engagement for area African American and Latino youth from Boston Public Schools.
Union of Minority Neighborhoods - $125,000 to support the Rally to Improve Schools and Education campaign.
Stand for Children Leadership Center - $25,000 to support community engagement in education policy and budget advocacy in Boston.
YMCA of Greater Boston - $100,000 to support the Y/BPS program, an outreach effort to Boston parents about opportunities in the Boston Schools.
Massachusetts Center for Charter Public School Excellence - $75,000 for a technical assistance program to expand charter school services.
Massachusetts Charter Public School Association - $10,000 to assess public support for a campaign to raise or remove the charter school cap.
Boston Foundation/Education Report Card Website - $25,000 to create a permanent source of data on every Boston public school.
ACCESS - $100,000 to expand the financial aid advising program.
Bay State Banner - $50,000 to support Step Up: Focus Your Steps on Academic Success to help inform minority students and families about college.
Boston Educational Development Foundation - $108,000 for a Director of the College Readiness Initiative.
University of Massachusetts Foundation, Inc. - $60,000 to promote early exposure and access to higher education for Boston Public School students.

Boston Neighborhood Network Television - $40,000 to expand the In Focus Youth Media program.
Girls’ Leap Self Defense, Inc. - $25,000 to address violence against girls.
Mass Mentoring Partnership, Inc. - $40,000 to recruit 1,000 mentors of color over three years.
MYTOWN, - $40,000 to expand the Youth Guide Development Program.
Sports4Kids - $40,000 for recreational programming.
Sportsmen’s Tennis Club, Inc. - $50,000 to develop out of school programming during high-risk times of the year.
West End House Boys and Girls Club - $50,000 to expand neighborhood outreach.
Youth Enrichment Services, Inc. - $30,000 for general operating support.
Boston Public Library Foundation, Inc. - $35,000 for a library-based science exploration curriculum for Boston students.
Sociedad Latina, Inc. - $25,000 for general operating support.
South End Technology Center @ Tent City - $40,000 to expand the Learn 2 Teach, Teach 2 Learn program.
Partners for Youth With Disabilities, Inc. - $50,000 to support mentoring programs for young people.

Alzheimer’s Association Massachusetts Chapter - $50,000 for the Health Disparities Project to help diagnose, treat and refer minority residents with Alzheimer’s disease.
Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Inc. - $50,000 to help eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities in infant mortality, low birth weight, and related birth outcomes.
Community Partners, Inc. - $20,000 for the Boston Health Access Network, a meeting and resource sharing program.
Juvenile Rights Advocacy Project  - $25,000 to support health access for youth in the juvenile justice system.
Martha Eliot Health Center - $50,000 for the Jamaica Plain Community Health Trauma Response, for responding to violence.
Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers - $25,000 for the Commonwealth Fund Safety Net Medial Home Initiative.
AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts, Inc. - $25,000 for the BE SAFE Program to address health issues related to substance abuse, sexual and mental health, healthy relationships and dating violence.
Center for Community Health, Education and Research - $38,500 to provide crisis intervention to domestic violence victims.
Massachusetts Housing and Shelter Alliance, Inc. - $40,000 to address chronic homelessness.
Somerville Mental Health Associates, Inc. - $75,000 to help at-risk individuals and families remain housed.
Wellesley College - $50,000 for the Wellesley Center for Women for a project focused on how courts handle domestic violence cases.
Women’s Lunch Place, Inc. - $25,000 to support an organizational development plan.
Victory Programs, Inc. - $25,000 to bring low-cost produce to clients of ReVision House Victory programs.

Northeastern University Center for Urban and Regional Policy - $50,000 for the Commonwealth Housing Task Force and work related to implementation of Chapter 40R and Chapter 40S housing legislation.
City Life/Vida Urbana - $50,000 to support organizing, advocacy and coalition building for low-income Boston residents facing foreclosure.
Father Bill’s & MainSpring - $30,000 to provide support of a strategic plan for families in need on the South Shore.
Heading Home - $70,000 to address homelessness.
Local Initiatives Support Coalition - $100,000 for general operating support.
Massachusetts Senior Action Council, Inc. - $75,000 to support the Greater Boston Senior Housing Preservation project.
Metropolitan Boston Housing Partnership - $60,000 to work on foreclosure prevention and tenancy preservation.
Fairmount/Indigo Line CDC Collaborative - $125,000 for general operating support.
Boston Foundation - $50,000 to augment the Summer Safety Fund to expand programs serving youth in Boston.
Boston Medical Center Corporation - $50,000 for the violence intervention advocate program.
Somerville Community Corporation - $30,000 for the Preventing Displacement along the Transit Corridor project.
Boston Foundation - $50,000 to supplement the Summer Safety fund.

Massachusetts Nonprofit Network - $25,000 to support efforts to organize the nonprofit sector.
Boston Foundation/The Monitor Institute - $180,000 to support work on the Foundation’s Impact project.
Boston University School of Management - $75,000 for the Institute for Nonprofit Management to help prepare the next generation of nonprofit leaders.

Boston Schoolyard Funders Collaborative - $50,000 to rebuild and renovate outdoor learning and recreational space connected to Boston public elementary and middle school sites.
Foster’s Pond Corporation - $3,000 to help preserve Foster’s Pond in Andover.
Greater Four Corners Action Coalition, Inc. - $30,000 to promote community development in North Dorchester to address the lack of access to rapid transit.
Historic Boston, Inc. - $65,000 to use historic preservation to improve the urban environment and build stronger neighborhoods.

Jewish Vocational Services, Inc. - $75,000 for general support.
Operation A.B.L.E. of Greater Boston, Inc. - $50,000 to provide employment and training opportunities to mature workers from diverse backgrounds.
Community Work Services - $50,000 to improve job sustainability for ex-offenders.
Educational Development Group, Inc. - $34,000 for the Accelerated English Plus program for new immigrants.
Future Chefs  - $25,000 to support its School to Career project for high school students.
Massachusetts Coalition for Adult Education - $50,000 to help establish a state-wide Adult Basic Education advocacy system.
Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute, Inc. - $50,000 to improve training and create opportunities for low-income, direct-care workers.
Tufts Medical Center, Inc. - $75,000 for the Career Ladder Program, a multi-year initiative focused on career development for entry-level, low-wage workers.
Bessie Tartt Children’s Foundation, Inc. - $50,000 to enhance the lives of children through early education advocacy and public policy reform.
Morgan Memorial Goodwill Industries, Inc. - $50,000 to provide job training to people with disabilities.