CNC Distributes Final $100,000 Spaulding Grant Money in Year Five

It wasn’t exactly how the Charlestown Neighborhood Council (CNC) hoped the final year of their Spaulding Rehabilitation mitigation grant distribution would go, as they had always hoped to have a big celebration at the Knights of Columbus to celebrate a successful five-year partnership with the hospital and the community.

In the end, they had to do it remotely and online, but nonetheless the community still received $100,000 in help this week. The CNC announced the 15 recipients of their final round of grant distributions, and noted that they were able to distribute $100,000.

The 2020 Spaulding-CNC Partnership Fund awarded $100,000 in grants to 15 non-profit organizations for programs serving Charlestown residents.  This concludes five years of $100,000/year from the Spaulding new hospital construction Determination of Need (DON) funding. 

“The Spaulding-CNC Community Partnership Fund was an annual community-based process between Spaulding and members of the CNC to distribute $100,000 in targeted “mini-grants” yearly from 2016-2020 for Charlestown community-based non-profit organizations and programs that enhance the quality of life in Charlestown, strengthen the capacity of Charlestown residents to meet health and human service needs, and is aligned with one of the goals identified through the Community Health Needs Assessment,” read a statement from the awards committee.

The Committee did recognize that many of the plans submitted for grants may have necessary changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The committee agreed to still proceed with the original applications and programs as submitted. The options are that the organization may use the funds as originally intended in 2020, the organization may use the funds for a modified program in 2020, or the organization may use the funds for the originally intended program to be postponed for use in 2021.

The 15 organizations receiving grants for 2020 are:

•BHA Charlestown Adult Education, $10,000 – BHA Charlestown Adult Education/CharlestownWorks is a comprehensive adult education program and career center comprised of job training and education for adults.  The grant funding will provide support for adult students fees to take the HiSET (High School Equivalency Test), once completing the education courses provided at the Center and to provide transportation assistance for students to attend classes and take the exams.

•Charlestown Boys and Girls Club, $4,295 – The Inclusion Initiative and the Outdoor Adventures at the Charlestown Boys and Girls Club is focused on positioning staff and programs to effectively support individual members, whether they face physical, developmental, or behavioral challenges such as autism spectrum disorders, sensory impairments, Down Syndrome, physical mobility issues, among others. The goal is to maximize successful participation in our programs through an approach that accommodates the needs of members while maintaining the fundamental nature of Club activities.

•Charlestown Girls’ Softball, $2,500 – Charlestown Girls’ Softball will replace the team’s uniforms, which last on average 5 seasons.  The program provides girls ages 5-18 with a team experience that fosters positive achievement, self-esteem and individual growth. 

•Charlestown Little League, $5,000 – Charlestown Little League will continue the teen employment program by employing and training 10-12 teens as teen umpires and concessions stand staff, ages 13-18, providing them with a safe alternative after-school activity, as well as a source of income and community pride.  Additionally, this grant funding will provide the annual insurance coverage for the program.

•Charlestown Working Theater, $9,000 – The Charlestown Working Theater will support the youth productions, classes, and community/artistic partnerships, which includes core educational programs for children and young adults including our two annual productions, and off-site classes in instructional chess and animation.  Expenses include administrative and education salary supports, as well as expendables such as class supplies, costumes and sets.  Funding will also include support for a summer camp program that CWT provides in partnership with Charlestown Boys & Girls Club.

•Charlestown Youth Football & Cheerleading, $5,000 – Charlestown Youth Football and Cheerleading provides fundamental teaching, instruction, and coaching for boys and girls ages 6-15. The grant will pay the required insurance, referee and EMT fees, safety courses for coaches and staff, and new equipment.  The program teaches discipline and respect, with a mission to keep at-risk youth off the street and off drugs.

•Charlestown Youth Hockey Association, $5,000 – Through targeted, specific efforts of Micro Hockey and Friday Night Ice, Charlestown Youth Hockey aims to support and develop highly influential groups of youth at the youngest and critical teen ages. Funding from this grant supports these continued efforts for specific age-appropriate skill and alternate activity programs will continue to provide an environment for safe, healthy and fun activities to educate and build the mental and physical well-being for the youth of Charlestown.

•Courageous Sailing, $4,850 – Courageous Sailing will provide families, whose members participate in Adaptive Sailing Days or in our Swim, Sail, Science Program, the opportunity to sail together with an instructor.  Charlestown Family Sailing will give Charlestown residents who might not usually have access to our harbor the opportunity to enjoy the fun, peace, family time, and/or learning possibilities of sailing. 

•Gardens of Charlestown, $3,295 – Charlestown Gardens will continue and expand its program “Tend and Tell: Watch us Grow!” to teach children from K-2 at Harvard Kent School about earth sciences, nutrition and reading.  Using the community garden as the laboratory for learning, the children acquire knowledge and hands-on experience pertaining to: how and why plants grow, where their food comes from, the relationship of weather, birds and insects to successful growing and healthy nutritional options through a nine-week in-class curriculum.

•Harvard Kent Parents’ Association, $10,000 – The Harvard-Kent Parents Association received funding to promote greater active parent engagement at Harvard-Kent School and more educational after-school programming for 2020-2021.  Funding will support a back to school kick-off event, translators for parent meetings, food and custodial services, and programming support for after-school activities.

•Harvest on Vine Food Pantry, $9,800 – Expanding on the successful and widely popular Thanksgiving turkey distribution, Harvest on Vine will provide Easter ham dinners again to 500 families in 2020 and 2021.  These funds will provide about half of the needed funding for this project, with the rest coming from additional community support and fundraising.   Additionally, Harvest on Vine received funding for a new power pallet jack to facilitate moving food that needs to be distributed.

•John F. Kennedy Family Service Center, Inc., $10,000 – The Kennedy Center will continue to use the grant funding for a Parent Partner staff position, hiring a local resident to provide a bridge between the staff and community they serve. The funding will be paired with other grant sources to help fund the position that provide the educational parenting skills training and support services offered through the Community Services Center. The Parent Partner assists parents with Ages & Stages screenings, Book-Nook lending library, weekly parenting support group and facilitated playgroups. The grant will also fund a Community/Senior Service Coordinator assisting elders with access to community resources related to food, housing, employment, transportation, etc.

•North End Music & Arts Program for Charlestown Seniors, $3,900 – This grant supports the North End Music & Performing Arts Center (NEMPAC) to begin a Charlestown Seniors Choir, located and in partnership with the Robert A. Georgine Towers.  Consisting of 100% Charlestown residents, this program will provide social engagement, light physical activities and emotional health benefits for an elder population in our community.

•Special Townies, $10,000 – Special Townies is a recreational program for children with special needs and their families, with a mission to foster respect, awareness, acceptance, and inclusion within our community of children with Autism and other developmental disorders. We operate out of our clubhouse in Charlestown, where we organize social events and outings, provide resources and guidance to parents, hold meetings, and provide the environment needed for the socialization of special needs children. This funding will go toward keeping our space running so that we may continue to provide these services to our 40+ families. Additional funding will go toward programming, specifically the costs associated with our weekly swim days, Social Saturdays and Sundays, and monthly trips to Sky Zone.

•Warren-Prescott Foundation, $7,360 – The Warren Prescott Foundation will use the grant funding to support the City Connects programming, which targets students with moderate risk in one or more of the following areas: Academic, Social/Emotional/Behavioral, Health, and or Family.  This funding will allow expansion of the programming to include 50-60 students through 10 new small groups of 5-6 students each, to teach skills such as self-esteem building, anger management, how to make and keep friends, and tools for calming themselves/self-regulation.  The groups would meet on a regular basis throughout the school year to support these students develop a growth mindset.

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