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The Webster Five Foundation Awards Over $79K in Grants to Local Nonprofits

Auburn, MA – Following a successful year of supporting community causes in 2023, the Webster Five Foundation is thrilled to announce their first round of grant recipients for 2024. This quarter, the Foundation has awarded $79,192 in grants to 20 organizations, 18 of which are based in Worcester County.

The Foundation provides grants each quarter to nonprofit organizations or programs that support expanding or improving access to education, culture and the arts, social services, charitable activities, and community development. In 2023 alone, the Foundation fulfilled 54 grant requests, totaling $246,500.

“At Webster Five, our commitment to supporting local organizations that bring positive change to the community is at the core of our values,” said Don Doyle, President/CEO, Webster Five. “We’re excited to witness the impactful projects that will unfold thanks to the dedication of these deserving nonprofits.”

In this grant cycle, the Webster Five Foundation awarded funding to the following organizations:

  • AIDS Project Worcester, Inc. (APW) — $5,000 for its Supporters of Worcester Area Youth (SWAGLY) programming, a social support club for 11–18-year-old LGBTQIA+ young people and allies that has been running since 1984. APW uses advocacy, education, and collaborative initiatives to enhance the lives and health of people infected with and affected by HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis C (HCV), and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
  • Assabet Valley Mastersingers (AVM) — $500 towards offering free concert tickets for seniors at upcoming concerts in Shrewsbury, Northborough, and Southborough. AVM is a regional chorus with performances in Shrewsbury, Westborough, Northborough, Southborough, and Marlborough, MA dedicated to performance excellence and innovative programming.
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Mass/MetroWest (BBBS CMMW) — $6,500 to support the organization’s Big Futures – High School Mentoring Program for at-risk students in Worcester, MA schools. For over 50 years, BBBS CMMW has helped transform the lives of more than 30,000 children facing adversity by creating professionally supported mentoring relationships.
  • Center for Women & Enterprise (CWE) — $3,500 to support of the CWE Central MA office and its related programming. The mission of CWE is to help women business owners and aspiring female entrepreneurs launch and grow their businesses by providing greater access to the resources, tools, and support they need.
  • Central Massachusetts Housing Alliance, Inc. (CMHA) — $3,000 for the organization’s 39th Annual WALK for the homeless. CMHA has over 35 years of experience in providing direct services to homeless and at-risk families and in leading community efforts to address homelessness through promoting homelessness prevention and stabilization services through collaborative community partnerships.
  • EcoTarium — $3,000 to support the cost of offering scholarships for the Museum’s Discovery Camps. Located on 45 acres of natural beauty, the mission of the EcoTarium is to inspire a passion for science and nature through one-of-a-kind experiences, interactive exhibits, and accessible programming for all.
  • Genesis Club House, Inc. — $5,000 for its Older Adult Program for adults 55 years and older living with and managing a diagnosed mental illness. Genesis Club helps people in recovery from serious mental illness attain competitive employment, education, physical health, and stable housing.
  • Girl Scouts of Central and Western Massachusetts (GSCWM) — $3,000 to support the “It’s a Girl’s World” programming, which focuses on providing young women with the opportunity to foster a sense of belonging and explore their true potential and leadership abilities. GCSWM is a Girl Scout leadership council that welcomes girls of all ages, backgrounds, and interests to inspire the mission of building girls of courage, confidence, and character who will make the world a better place.
  • Horace Mann Educational Associates, Inc. (HMEA) — $1,500 towards HMEA’s Day Habilitation Program, which seeks to offer support programs for adults with disabilities. The mission of this Franklin-based organization is to teach, support, and empower people with developmental disabilities and their families to live meaningful lives of their choice.
  • Jeremiah’s Inn — $5,000 for the organization’s Recovery Residence. Since 1982, Jeremiah’s Inn has worked to foster a sense of community and mutual aid through partnerships, volunteerism, and their nutrition center.
  • Literacy Volunteers of Greater Worcester (LVGW) — $1,500 for LVGW’s for New Americans. The organization’s mission is culturally compassionate English language education to provide social and economic empowerment.
  • Mass Audubon’s Broad Meadow Brook Wildlife Sanctuary and Conservation Center — $12,192 to support its “Plant and Animal Adaptations” program at Swanson Road Intermediate School, serving 190 fourth grade Auburn students. Mass Audubon is inspired by a vision where nature is valued as essential to quality of life, and people live with appreciation and respect for the complex ecological systems that sustain life on Earth, working together to ensure they are protected.
  • Matthew 25 — $2,000 and a match of up to $1,000 to support its housing project for a new two-family house at 11 Mount Pleasant Street, Worcester, MA. Matthew 25 acquires run-down or abandoned properties, renovates existing structures or builds new construction on those properties in the Worcester area, and rents the finished homes to low-income families at a percentage of their income.
  • Pathways for Change, Inc. — $4,000 to support its General Operating Expenses. The mission of Pathways is to address the impact of sexual assault and abuse by providing quality and multicultural services to all persons whose lives have been impacted by sexual violence and education geared toward the prevention of violence.
  • Regional Environment Council (REC) — $3,500 for REC’s Youth Growing Organics in Worcester (YouthGROW) programming. The mission of the Regional Environmental Council is to bring people together to create a just food system and to build healthy, sustainable, and equitable communities in Worcester, MA and beyond.
  • Science from Scientists (SciSci) — $2,500 to support its In-School Module-Based (ISMB) Education Program for Title 1 Worcester Public Schools. Bedford-based SciSci specializes in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) experiential learning for 3rd- through 8th-graders, with the goal of measurably improving the attitudes and aptitudes of students in STEM.
  • Simon Says Give Worcester — $3,500 to support its High Five for Supplies programming. As a kid-founded and run organization, Simon Says Give provides low- to moderate-income graduating elementary school students across the city with binders filled with supplies for middle-school (High Five for Supplies), Birthday Celebrations to at-need kids ages 5-12, and leadership/service opportunities for kids to run their programs.
  • Straight Ahead Ministries, Inc. — $2,000 to help support its Worcester Youth Reentry Program. Straight Ahead Ministries works to break an unforgiving cycle of recidivism for justice-involved young people, ages 14 – 24, through authentic relationships and re-integration resources.
  • Worcester Youth Orchestras (WYO) — $1,000 to support its Financial Aid efforts to eliminate barriers to participation in their programming. WYO’s mission is to provide youth in central MA with an educational and enjoyable musical experience; and to provide accessible live musical and cultural enrichment to the greater Worcester community.
  • YMCA of Central Massachusetts — $10,000 to support its Achievers Program, a mentoring program focusing on assisting teens in their matriculation to college and in exploring future career paths through college preparation programming, adult mentorship, and career cluster workshops. Spanning across six full-service branches, the YMCA of Central Massachusetts has evolved into one of the region’s most significant charitable institutions, serving 26,000 members across nearly 70 cities and towns.

Since its inception in 1996, the Foundation has awarded $3,978,700 to 296 organizations. Grant applications for the next round of funding will be accepted through June 15th, 2024. To learn more about the Webster Five Foundation, click here.