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December 16, 2019

Greater Worcester Community Foundation awards $1.5M to local charities

Photo | Brad Kane Barbara Fields, President & CEO, Greater Worcester Community Foundation

More than 130 nonprofits were the recipient of $1.5 million from the Greater Worcester Community Foundation’s Community Grants program, the GWCF announced Monday.

The foundation’s mission is to assist charities built on self-reliance and serve a diverse audience for a better Worcester. Since 1979, GWCF has built an endowment of $153 million, raised $142 million, and distributed $117 million in grants, the foundation said.

Community grants are made possible by donors who have established discretionary funds with the foundation. It enables the recipients to provide resources where community needs are greatest.

Among the top grants announced Monday are Edward Street Child Service, $83,000; Family Health Center of Worcester, $64,500; YMCA of Central Massachusetts, $54,000; Latino Education Institute, $40,000; and African Community Education Program, $38,000.

Barbara Fields, the foundation’s president and CEO, said it’s essential that the city’s nonprofits receive the resources they need to continue their work. 

“We’re privileged to be an investor in so many life-changing organizations,” she said in a statement. 

Fields said the program is one of the region’s broadest funding opportunities. Areas of interest to the foundation include civic life, arts, education, environment, early childhood development, economic security, healthy communities, and youth development.

This year, 30% of grant dollars are going to programs offering youth leadership, mentorship, summer learning opportunities, and other year-round programming. Another 26% will support early childhood development programs. Additionally, grants totaling more than $150,000 are going to programs targeting affordable housing and homelessness prevention. 

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