$130,000 in Emergency Funding Awarded

Advancing Gender and Racial Equity

The Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts has awarded $130,000 in emergency grant funding to organizations working with women and their families to prevent homelessness, food insecurity, and to aid survivors of domestic or sexual violence.

The Women’s Fund conducted virtual interviews instead of a typical application submission to expedite the funding process and prevent an additional burden on these direct service organizations supporting Western Massachusetts women and families in need. Interview conversations for funding focused on unmet emergency need to prevent homelessness, food insecurity, and to aid survivors of domestic or sexual violence with prioritization given to organizations led by women and Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC).

Grant Awardees

Western Massachusetts

  • Clinical and Support Options for their diversion program that supports families through the pandemic crisis and prevent homelessness;
  • Food Bank of Western Massachusetts for their work with women and families to prevent food insecurity and to aid families who receive benefits from the SNAP program;
  • Springfield No One Leaves for their work with women and families to prevent housing insecurity in all four counties of Western Massachusetts.

Berkshire County

  • Community Health Programs for their efforts to support the health needs of women and their families living in rural communities, who are uninsured, under-insured, or in need of elder care, especially through their use of a mobile care unit;
  • Elizabeth Freeman Center for their continued work to support women and girls who are survivors of domestic or sexual violence. While being impacted by restricted and reduced funding from other sources, EFC has maintained shelter services and has expanded its services to food security to reduce possible public health exposure in restaurants in Berkshire County;
  • Volunteers in Medicine Berkshire, Inc. for their patient-centered, culturally competent care supporting immigrant women and families while underemployed, unemployed, and seeking housing security.

Franklin County

  • Rural Development Inc. for their efforts in homelessness prevention for women and their families;
  • New England Learning Center for Women in Transition for their work on the prevention and intervention of domestic and sexual violence, and their support of survivors;
  • Opioid Task Force of Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region for their work in supporting smaller grassroots organizations within the community that address substance-use disorder;
  • Root Studio for their work with girls and young women in Turner’s Falls to help break the cycles of family trauma, poverty, sexual assault, and substance use disorders. In addition to yoga-based practices, the studio will provide a private and quiet space with a supportive adult presence – a space for participants to rest, read, make art, journal, do homework, and for self-care.

Hampden County

  • Arise for Social Justice for their work in housing logistics and preventing housing insecurity for women and their families;
  • Springfield Food Policy Council for their program to prevent food insecurity, and additionally their commitment to fostering a relationship with community members who learn and teach how to grow food for their families;
  • Womanshelter/Compañeras for their work on housing insecurity and specifically their support of women and girls who are survivors of domestic or sexual violence.

Hampshire County

  • Amherst Survival Shelter for their work supporting the community of women and their families experiencing food insecurity in Amherst and twelve surrounding communities;
  • Grow Food Northampton for their program to prevent food insecurity, and additionally their commitment to fostering a relationship with community members who learn and teach how to prepare healthy food for their families;
  • Safe Passage for their work on housing insecurity and specifically their support of women and girls who are survivors of domestic or sexual violence.