Community Foundation of North Central Massachusetts launches a series of new grants

Leominster, Mass. (June 11, 2015)  Community Foundation of North Central Massachusetts announced 30 grants, totaling nearly $500,000 from its general endowment funds and field of interest funds, during a press event at Apple Hill Farm. 

“What continues to impress me is the quality of the programs that we had the opportunity to support,” said Phil Grzewinski, president and CEO of the Community Foundation of North Central Massachusetts. 

Ten of the grants were made from the Foundation’s general endowment fund, which includes support from seven named funds: ABM General Endowment Fund; Allen & Barbara Rome General Endowment Fund; Brown/Peterson Family General Endowment Fund; Gerald E. Bieler Memorial Endowment Fund; IC Founders Society Endowment Fund; KRC Family Endowment Fund, and the W. E. Aubuchon, Jr. General Endowment Fund.

City of Leominster’s Fire Department received an $11,550 grant for a fire prevention program that will allow for the purchase of 150 stove top fire suppression units. This program will benefit Leominster residents who are the most at risk for cooking fires.

A $5,000 grant was made to Community Legal Aid of Worcester for its North Worcester County Emergency Shelter Advocacy Project. 

Field trips for Leominster Public School students to Fitchburg Art Museum were made possible through a $6,000 grant. 

A $5,000 grant to the Gardner Public Schools will be used for GLEAM—Gardner Learning & Enrichment Absolutely Matters—which will offer after school activities to students in grades 5-7 from Gardner Middle School.
 
Literacy Volunteers of the Montachusett Area, Fitchburg, received $4,178 for its literacy program. 

A $12,000 grant to LUK, Inc., Fitchburg, will be used for its program, North County Runaway & Homeless Youth Training/Technical Assistance, which provides training, technical assistance and a public awareness campaign, so that young people who are vulnerable to homelessness or are homeless in Northern Worcester County experience fewer barriers and more efficient referrals for services.

Montachusett Interfaith Hospitality Network, Leominster, will use a $15,000 grant for its Community Connection Project, which builds community partnerships to support its homeless clients by identifying and fostering the skills needed to become self-sufficient.

Siblings Connections, Somerville, received a $5,000 grant for camper recruitment in North Central Massachusetts. This will allow for siblings within the foster system to spend quality time together, in an entertaining, educational venue. 

A $15,000 grant will be used for child court advocacy by The CASA Project, which is based in Worcester. 

Veteran Homestead Inc., Fitchburg, will use a $5,000 grant for its elder care program. 

A fund established for environmental causes and animal welfare made seven grants: 

ACE Central Massachusetts, Fitchburg, received a $9,884 grant to neuter and microchip pets for low-income families. 

A $3,954 grant to Ashburnham Conservation Trust will be used for improving Broadhurst Point, a public space located on Lake Watatic. This parcel allows the only public access to the lake.

Clinton Greenway Conservation Trust received a $10,000 grant to acquire a rail trail in Clinton, which will be used to access nearby open space. This acquisition is hoped to act as a catalyst for other neighboring organizations embarking on similar rail trail projects.

A $15,000 grant to Growing Place Garden Project will be used to create teaching gardens, which will help people of all ages to learn how to grow, harvest and use their own fresh, healthy produce. 

Massachusetts Audubon Society, Inc., Princeton, received a $4,000 grant for a science education  program designed for third- and fourth-grade students and teachers.

A $15,000 grant to Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust, Athol, will be used for community conservation. 

The Nashua River Watershed, Groton, received a $10,000 grant to help middle school teachers meet the new state science and technology engineering standards. 

A fund established for organizational development made five grants: 

Beacon of Hope, Leominster, received a $10,000 grant for a capacity building initiative, which will fund a thorough organizational assessment leading to the creation of a strategic plan that will set priorities of the organization.

A $10,000 grant to Devens' Loaves & Fishes will be used for a training program to help the organization’s staff and volunteers enhance effectiveness and efficiency. 

North County Land Trust, Leominster, received a $12,500 grant for a capacity-building project. 

A $7,500 grant to North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy, Orange, will be used for succession and transition of the organization’s founding director.

United Neighbors of Fitchburg will use a $15,000 grant toward strategic capacity building for sustainability. 

A fund established for critical needs made $137,141 in grants:

Kylee’s Kare Kits for Kidz, Inc. of Leominster received a $10,000 grant to provide food assistance to students attending Leominster Public Schools.

An additional $127,141 in grants were made for food cards to local food pantries, fuel assistance and assisting the Spanish American Center with a temporary office location, due to a flood. 

The Community Foundation’s Educational Access Fund awarded three grants for student scholarships: 

Fitchburg State University received $50,000, Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School, $25,000 and Mount Wachusett Community College, $67,700.

Since its inception, the foundation has awarded over $40 million in grants and distributions from 160 funds that have been established by individuals, families and organizations.

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