Boston Foundation announces $2.6 million in grants to Greater Boston organizations

Boston Foundation announces $2.6 million in grants to Greater Boston organizations

Group News posted in on 21 December 2017| comments
audience: The Boston Foundation | last updated: 21 December 2017


The Boston Foundation announced that the Foundation Board of Directors has approved nearly $2.6 million in discretionary grants at its December meeting.

The Boston Foundation announced its quarterly discretionary grants after a meeting of the Foundation’s Board of Directors this week. The Board approved $1,710,000 in single and multi-year discretionary grants to 25 nonprofits to be paid out beginning in January 2018. Of the 25 grants, six provide multi-year support. In addition, the Board approved another $605,000 in single-year Open Door grants to 22 additional Boston-area nonprofits,  and $286,335 in grants through other programs of the Foundation.

“With this round of grants, the Boston Foundation reaffirms its commitment to the power of youth development programs both in and after school, with grants to two organizations for which we were ‘There at the Beginning,’ Playworks and Boston After School and Beyond,” said Paul S. Grogan, President and CEO of the Boston Foundation. “In addition, we continue our focus on organizations creating jobs and bringing entrepreneurship opportunities to underserved Boston neighborhoods.” 

The two largest grants made are a pair of two-year commitments. The Foundation is awarding a $250,000, two-year general operating support grant to Boston After School and Beyond, which has created a powerful portfolio of after-school and summer programs for thousands of Boston Public Schools students.

The Foundation also continues its support for Playworks, with a commitment of $200,000 over two years. With our support, Playworks has been able to expand in Boston and to other cities across Massachusetts, part of a national network strategy designed to reach 1-in-10 elementary school students in the country by 2020. 

To help strengthen the nonprofit sector, the Foundation is making a two-year, $175,000 grant to the College for Social Innovation, which works to diversify and strengthen the talent pipeline for the nonprofit sector through outreach and innovative programs. 

And a $70,000, one-year grant to Commonwealth Kitchen highlights a portfolio of grants to organizations that provide entrepreneurship opportunities to communities underrepresented in the overall economy. A food business incubator, Commonwealth Kitchen has successfully launched a number of local food startups, and its current crop of startups is more than half minority- or women-owned.

Open Door Grants

Designed as a means for organizations that have missions which may not align with the five key strategy areas of the Foundation, Open Door Grants are one-year general operating support or project support grants for organizations doing important work throughout Greater Boston. 

Some 22 grantees received grants ranging from $15,000 to $50,000. Grantees are eligible to apply for grants for two consecutive years.

Grantees include both well-known organizations, such as Save the Harbor/Save the Bay and the Huntington Theatre Company, and many smaller or less-established groups. One particular focus, as the winter months approach, was grants to organizations that help ensure food and fuel access to communities in need.

One other new grantee, Sitters without Borders, was highlighted by reviewers for its innovative efforts to overcome one of the major stumbling blocks for young parents seeking new careers, providing free to low cost weekly babysitting services to low-income mothers attending college in the Greater Boston area.

The full list of discretionary and Open Door grantees is below, along with other grants targeting grassroots or capacity-building work, or grants made through a number of special initiatives.


Arts and Culture

Boston Children's Museum: A $20,000/one-year project support grant to Boston Children’s  Museum, one of the largest and oldest children’s museums in the world, to support its ongoing performing arts series, specifically its concerts, workshops and demonstrations that bring the performing arts to over 90,000 visitors a year.

Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center:  A $20,000/one-year project support grant to the Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center, Boston's largest nonprofit service provider for Asian-American families,  to support new arts programming for the  Boston and Greater Boston cultural community in their recently opened Pao Arts Center.  Funds will support local artists with free performance space, professional development opportunities, and help with marketing their events.

GrubStreet: A $15,000/one-year general operating support grant to Grub  Street, Inc., an Arts Service Organization that supports writers of all backgrounds working in all genres in Greater Boston's literary sector, for its participation as a member of the  Boston Foundation's Arts and Culture Program's Arts Service Organization Cohort.

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Inc.: A $20,000/one-year project support grant to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Inc., a non-traditional museum with a commitment to immersive, multi-disciplinary offerings, to support the first phase of the creation of a Choreographer-in-Residence at the Museum.

Education: Early Childhood

New Profit, Inc.: A $150,000/three-year project support grant to New Profit, Inc., a venture philanthropy fund in Boston that aims to break down barriers to opportunity in America, for the Early Childhood Support Organization Initiative. 

Education: College Completion

Match Education: A $100,000/two-year general operating support to The Match School Foundation, Inc., an organization that helps Boston's young adults from low-income backgrounds earn college degrees and secure a competitive professional salary.

Education: Structural Reform

Boston After School and Beyond: A $250,000/two-year general operating support grant for Boston After School & Beyond, Inc., a public-private partnership that seeks to ensure that every child in Boston has the opportunity to develop his or her full potential, for its multifaceted efforts to strengthen the youth development sector and connect it to the citywide college readiness agenda.

Boston Educational Development Foundation: A $60,000/one-year project support grant to Boston Education Development Foundation, an entity dedicated to facilitating access to philanthropic opportunities and private financial resources that benefit students and educators in the BPS, to support implementation of the Avid study skills program, which provides educators with trainings and methodologies that develop students’ critical thinking, literacy, and math skills.

National Council on Teacher Quality: A $60,000/one-year project support grant to National Council on Teacher Quality, an organization which works to strengthen teacher quality in Massachusetts and elsewhere by improving the health of the teaching profession, to expand the Great Districts program to additional districts in Greater Boston.

Jobs and Economic Development

BEST Corp. Hospitality Training Center: A $35,000/one-year general operating support grant to BEST Corp. to fund the Mel King Empowerment Program, an initiative to move more US-born African Americans into quality hotel jobs.

Center for Women and Enterprise:  A $30,000/one-year project support grant to the Center for Women & Enterprise, a national provider of entrepreneurship education training, counseling, and business assistance for burgeoning entrepreneurs, for their Community Classrooms program, which is designed to support inner-city entrepreneurs that lack the social capital to access mentors and technical assistance. The grant will also help to launch a new initiative to drive economic development in Boston, the Entrepreneurs Microloan Fund initiative.

Commonwealth Kitchen: A $70,000/one-year general operating support grant to Commonwealth Kitchen, Boston's only nonprofit food business incubator, to strengthen operations and build the organizational capacity needed to effectively scale growth.

Entrepreneurship for All, Inc.: A $50,000/one-year project support grant to Entrepreneurship for All, an organization accelerating economic and social impact through inclusive entrepreneurship in mid-sized cities that have suffered through decades of decline and struggled with entrenched poverty, for expansion of its EparaTodos, a business/nonprofit accelerator offered entirely in Spanish, to serve the Latino population of Lynn.

Epicenter Community: A $50,000/one-year general operating support grant payable to Transformative Culture Project for Epicenter Community, a collaborating organization that is working to bring Boston into the 21st century by helping create an innovative culture movement and build creative economies throughout the city.

Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation: A $25,000/one-year project support grant to Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation to support the Greater Boston Immigrant Defense Fund, which will support nonprofits seeking to strengthen the Greater Boston area's capacity to protect and defend its many immigrant communities, refugees, and temporary status holders by increasing education and access to legal services.

Urban Farming Institute: A $25,000/one-year project support grant to Urban Farming Institute, a nonprofit that develops urban farming and trains inner-city residents in Boston for green-collar jobs, for its Urban Farmer Training Program where trainees will learn farming techniques and business skills.

Venture Café Foundation, Inc.: A $40,000/one-year general operating support grant to Venture Cafe Foundation, Inc., an organization that connects the innovation community and builds a more inclusive innovation economy through spaces, programs, and conversations.

Health and Wellness

Baraka Community Wellness: A $25,000/one-year general operating support grant to Baraka Community Wellness with a focus on the FoodCares Boston program, which addresses the issues around poor dietary habits, food insecurity and lack of access to fresh healthy food within lower-income communities, specifically within public housing.

Boston Alliance for Community Health:  A $25,000/one-year general operating support grant to Boston Alliance for Community Health, an organization that seeks to improve the health and address the social determinants of health for Boston's most vulnerable populations and to achieve racial and ethnic health equity.

Fresh Truck Food Market: A $25,000/one-year general operating support grant to Fresh Truck, a mobile indoor/outdoor food market, to support their food access and nutrition education programs throughout Boston.

Massachusetts Dept. of Public Health: A $100,000/one-year project support grant to Health Resources in Action (as fiscal agent for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health) for the Mass in Motion Municipal Wellness and Leadership Grant Program, an initiative designed to build capacity at the municipal level to create a sustained approach for healthy eating and active living, specifically in Dorchester, Roxbury, and Malden.

Playworks: A $200,000/two-year general operating support grant to Playworks, an organization that leverages play as a tool to promote physical activity, increase social/emotional learning, and improve school climate, for students in Greater Boston.

Nonprofit Effectiveness

College for Social Innovation: A $175,000/two-year general operating support grant to the College for Social Innovation, Inc. which seeks to expand and diversify the social sector talent pipeline and educate and inspire the next generation of problem solvers in the nonprofit sector. 

Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, Inc.: A $90,000/two-year project support grant to Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, Inc. for support of the Fund for Shared Insight’s Listen for Good initiative, which will work with six Boston-area nonprofits to better collect and utilize feedback to improve their philanthropy.

Neighborhoods and Housing

Greater Four Corners Action Coalition: A $50,000/one-year general operating support grant to Greater Four Corners Action Coalition, a nonprofit that organizes residents of Dorchester to advocate on behalf of the Fairmount Indigo Commuter Rail line as well as anti-displacement policies.

OPEN DOOR GRANTS (all grants are one-year in duration):

Action for Boston Community Development, Inc.:  A $20,000 grant for assistance for vulnerable households that have exhausted their federal fuel subsidy.

Artists for Humanity, Inc.:  A $25,000 general operating support grant to fund AFH's engagement and empowerment of under-resourced teens through paid participation in its continuum of programs, which advance skills development in the art and design fields; experiential learning in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) concepts; and educational supports.

Bay Cove Human Services, Inc.:  A $25,000 grant for the Kit Clark Senior Nutrition Program, which seeks to ensure that thousands of diverse, very low-income older adults in Boston receive daily nutritious meals and nutrition education that will support healthy aging, decrease food insecurity and foster independence within the senior population of Boston.

Big Sister Association of Greater Boston, Inc.:  A $30,000 grant for general operating support.

Boston Debate League:  A $30,000 grant for general operating support to promote students' academic and 21st-century skills through debate.

Ellis Memorial and Eldredge House, Inc.:  A $30,000 grant for capacity building and strategic development.

Ethos:  A $30,000 grant for AgeWell Equality, a systems change initiative aimed at increasing the health and wellness of vulnerable lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) seniors living in Boston, Brookline, Cambridge, and Somerville by improving access and utilization.

Huntington Theatre Company, Inc.:  A $30,000 grant for Education and Community programs that remove socioeconomic barriers to live theatre and arts education for more than 36,000 Greater Boston students and underserved adults each year.

Health Care Without Walls:  A $35,000 grant to support the second phase of the Bridges to Elders program, which provides the highest level of health care access to aging homeless women by listening to clients' specific needs; giving them a voice in their care choices; and providing them with intensive case management, insurance application assistance, emotional support and guidance, and accompaniment as needed to specialist and laboratory appointments in order to improve health outcomes.

Massachusetts Center for Native American Awareness, Inc.:  A $30,000 grant for general operating support.

Moving Steps Foundation:  A $15,000 grant for Moving Stories, a full-length performance integrating live storytelling (by women), with original music and dance. 

National Consumer Law Center, Inc.:  A $15,000 grant for Project Stay Connected, which helps low-income households and seniors obtain the utility and home-heating services (electricity, gas, oil, and telephone) they need to survive and thrive.  

National Organization on Disability:  A $20,000 grant to build pipelines connecting college students with disabilities to employers.

Neighbor to Neighbor:  A $30,000 grant to continue a public education and civic engagement campaign to lift the voices and participation of Lynn's residents in the policy-making process.

Noonan Scholars:  A $25,000 grant for general operating support.

Partners for Youth with Disabilities, Inc.:  A $40,000 grant to provide disability inclusion competency training and support to 25 Boston-based workforce development and transition organizations.

Project Citizenship:  A $25,000 grant for general operating support.

Respond, Inc.:  A $25,000 grant to deepen support services for children and their parents who are survivors of domestic violence. 

Save the Harbor, Save the Bay, Inc.:  A $50,000 grant for general operating support.

Sitters Without Borders:  A $35,000 grant for general operating support. 

Team IMPACT:  A $20,000 grant to improve communications technology between teams.

Victory Programs, Inc.:  A $20,000 grant for the Boston Living Center’s Nutrition and Meals Program that provides nutritional resources to men and women with HIV/AIDS.


These grants come from funds set aside by the Board for specific purposes and are presented to the Board of Directors as part of the quarterly consent agenda. 

Boston Foundation Grassroots Fund:

A small grants program that supports program activities that might include, but are not limited to, community events and celebrations, pilot or demonstration projects, conferences and convenings, and small programs that mirror those funded by discretionary grants, but which lack sufficient scale to be eligible or competitive.

Black Ministerial Alliance of Greater Boston, Inc. 

$3,000: For the Dudley Street Dreams program.

GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, Inc. 

$5,000: For sponsorship of the 18th Annual Spirit of Justice Award Dinner.

John P. Holland Community Service Council, Inc. 

$8,000: For the Kappa Leadership Institute Summer Program.

Massachusetts Association of Minority Law Enforcement Officers, Inc. 

$10,000: For support of Supreme Team fall events.

Mattapan’s Finest Back to School Free Cut 

$7,500: For the free Cut and Curl Back to School event.

Mission Hill Family Collaboration 

$7,500: For the Repast program and the Jimmy Flint Scholarship Fund.

Next Leadership Development 

$5,000: For the DRIVE Boston career development and training program for the hard to employ.

PIM Project 

$5,000: For support of the Summer Nights program.

Schott Foundation for Public Education 

$5,000: For the National Black Women's Justice Institute's School Disparities and Black Girls Project.

Transgender Emergency Fund of Massachusetts 

$5,000: For general support.

Capacity Building Fund: For grants or contracts for capacity building and technical assistance to increase the overall effectiveness and efficiency of nonprofits to achieve their intended outcomes. 

The Record Company 

$25,000: To support the completion of a business plan.

Youth Design, Inc. 

$15,000: To create and confirm a vision and goals for the organization.

Other general grants:

Boston Foundation

$50,000: To provide support for the FutureCity program.

Massachusetts Legal Assistance Corporation

$50,000: For the Deliver on the Dream Initiative to assist with an increase in applications from immigrant communities.

New England Foundation for the Arts

$16,400: For the New England Dance Cultural Organizers Convening.

Technology Underwriting Greater Good

$20,000: For the Boston Public Schools Job Shadow Day with Salsify.

TSNE MissionWorks

$48,935: For support of the Teacher Collaborative and the Educator Exchange program.

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The Boston Foundation
75 Arlington Street 10th Floor
Boston, MA 02116
United States
Phone: 1 617-338-1700
Fax: 1 617-338-1605



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