Boston Foundation announces $450,000 in grants in seventh round from COVID-19 Response Fund

Giving totals nearly $3.7 million to date, to almost 140 nonprofits, more than 60% of which are led by people of color

May 11, 2020

Boston – The Boston Foundation today announced $450,000 in its seventh round of grants from the COVID-19 Response Fund in support of Greater Boston nonprofits providing critical support to communities most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The latest round includes 18 general operating support grants of $25,000 to organizations working with vulnerable populations, including seniors, communities of color, low-income residents, and immigrants—including undocumented immigrants.

To date, the Fund has made 139 grants totaling nearly $3.7 million to organizations since March 31, targeting support to community-based, minority-led organizations responding directly to issues triggered by COVID-19. To date, more than 60 percent of the grantees tracked are led by people of color, and fully two-thirds have had budgets under $5 million.

“The data show clearly that this virus is exploiting decades of social policies and practices that have put Blacks, Latinos, and other vulnerable communities at greater risk for illness and death,” said Orlando Watkins, Vice President for Programs at the Boston Foundation. “We are committed to ensuring that we are supporting organizations trying to bend that curve of inequity now, and we will be looking long-term to ensure that we do not accept old patterns of injustice in the months and years to come.”

To date, the COVID-19 Response Fund at the Boston Foundation has raised more than $8 million from more than 700 companies, private and family foundations, donor-advised funds, and individual or group gifts. The newest grantees are listed below. A full list of grantees since the Fund’s inception is available at

Round 7 Grantees List:

Each of the grantees below receives a $25,000, one-time general operating support grant from the COVID-19 Response Fund.

Association of Haitian Women (Dorchester): to support primarily immigrant clients (of whom 75% are undocumented) in Mattapan, Dorchester, and Hyde Park.  Support includes phone cards for domestic violence victims to continue communicating with advocates, rent support, and support accessing food, medication, diapers, toiletries and cleaning supplies.

Breaktime Cafe, Inc. (Boston): to support increased case management, coordinate personal shelter and health care, provide ongoing emotional support and mentorship, and to support the Frontline Meals Program. The Program provides healthy and substantive meals for frontline healthcare and hospital workers while creating job opportunities for vulnerable populations, such as young adults experiencing homelessness, returning citizens, and furloughed restaurant workers.

Building Audacity (Boston): to support food delivery to families who have seniors as guardians of young children, families who live in areas of Boston that have limited access to public transportation, and those among the disabled population.

Center for Cooperative Development and Solidarity (CCDS) (East Boston): to support approximately 150 families, primarily Latinx undocumented immigrants, in East Boston and the surrounding areas. Supports include bilingual information about domestic violence, translation and interpretation services, financial or material assistance, immigration resources, and emotional support.

Culturally Conscious Food Pantry Project (Determined Divas) (Dorchester): to support a pilot program for local bodegas in high-impact areas to provide food for residents through a voucher program.

Ethos (Jamaica Plain): to assist older adults with grocery shopping, securing health aids and medical transportation, home-delivered meals, live-streamed informational seminars, and mental health support.

Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) (Quincy/Brockton): to support guests in their South Shore shelter sites, meeting the basic needs of more than 260 individuals and an additional 130+ families in emergency family shelters each day.

Foundation To Be Named Later (Boston): to support 150 scholars who are immigrants, DACA recipients, or first-generation young people of color from Greater Boston’s most disadvantaged neighborhoods.  Emergency support includes grocery gift cards, transportation, bill assistance, and housing support.

GreenRoots (Chelsea): to support Chelsea and East Boston COVID-19 response efforts, including community coordination, neighbor check-ins, bilingual communication efforts, translation and sharing of official information addressing health, food, and financial assistance, stipends for community translators, small business support, and money for rent, food, and medicine.

Haley House, Inc. (Boston): to support providing a larger number of emergency home-cooked hot meals and expanded food pantry hours.

Hyde Square Task Force (Jamaica Plain): to support primarily Latinx youth, young adults and their families. Support services include social-emotional support for youth and college students, rent/utilities support, rapid cash assistance, and providing virtual, culturally responsive programming.

Immigrant Family Services Inc (IFSI) (Roslindale): to support immigrant, primarily Haitian, families, with services including access to food and other necessities, especially for the undocumented, legal help with asylum cases and for undocumented workers who have lost their jobs, and the wide dissemination of information in languages other than English.

Multicultural AIDS Coalition (Boston): to support a mutual assistance network with African communities, establish and coordinate a community hotline, distribute safety and disinfectant supplies (cloth masks, gloves, sanitizer), and support applications for unemployment and other benefits.

Rogerson Communities (Boston): to support chronically ill seniors, low-income families and individuals, and people with disabilities by providing basic needs assistance through housing, health services and individualized support to residents.

Sociedad Latina, Inc. (Roxbury): to support Latino, low-income, immigrant, undocumented, and Spanish-speaking youth (ages 11–21) and their families. Support includes connection to local resources, direct financial support, youth mental health and staff self-care support, and translation of emergency resources and critical COVID-19 updates.

WATCH CDC (Waltham): to directly support Waltham households, primarily Spanish speaking immigrants, with food delivery, grocery cards, diapers and baby formula, and to provide assistance filing for benefits.

West Suburban YMCA (Newton): to support frontline efforts to address the health and wellness of their most vulnerable constituents. Efforts include fulfilling health and safety needs for formerly homeless men, delivering food and groceries to over 90 low-income senior households across Newton, and providing financial support for furloughed staff to help cover monthly bills or groceries.

Whittier Street Health Center (Roxbury): to support efforts to address inequities in COVID-19 testing by providing medical interpretation services for patients, working with communities and faith-based organizations to reduce cultural barriers to care, connecting patients with community resources that can help older adults and people with underlying conditions adhere to their care plans,  and providing telehealth services for all patients.