Tufts University employee grant program helps local community organizations across Greater Boston

A view of the Tisch Library Roof, looking out over Somerville, with "Tufts" spelled out in the rooftop garden at sunset. (Alonso Nichols/Tufts University)

MEDFORD/SOMERVILLEMass. (May 14, 2020)—Thirty-four local organizations in Tufts’ four host communities have been awarded $28,000 in grants from the Tufts Community Grants (TCG) program. The grants, which are fully funded by donations from Tufts University faculty and staff, are awarded each year to community-based charitable organizations in Boston, Grafton, Medford and Somerville.

“The Tufts Community Grants program is a great way for our employees to support nonprofit organizations in our host communities.  All of these organizations are also supported by Tufts volunteers -- students, faculty and/or staff,” said Rocco DiRico, director of Tufts University’s Government and Community Relations office. “Now, more than ever, local nonprofit organizations need our support.  These grants will provide vital resources for our community partners.”

Local non-profits have experienced a surge in need for their services as the COVID-19 crisis has impacted host communities. Hearty Meals for All, a hunger relief program based in Somerville, received a $1,600 TCG grant to support their services. “During the COVID-19 crisis, our food and material costs have increased as we have transitioned to to-go meals, and this grant will help cover the extra expenses,” said Sally Brzozowski, board president of Hearty Meals for All. “We’re grateful that more people have found our work during this hard time.”

Once a year, a volunteer committee comprised of Tufts faculty and staff members meets to review proposals and select TCG recipients. This year, the committee received 60 proposals and ultimately awarded grants to 34 organizations. Members of the TCG board look for applicants that provide important services and programming for residents of our host communities.

TCG is a giving option within the annual Tufts Community Appeal (TCA), an internal fundraising campaign for faculty and staff at Tufts University that occurs each fall. The TCA is an opportunity for employees to come together to support students, our neighbors and non-profits in our host communities.

Questions regarding Tufts Community Grants can be directed to the office of Government and Community Relations at Tufts University by email at communityrelations@tufts.edu or by phone at 617-627-3780.

The Boston grant recipients are:

Art Resource Collaborative for Kids - $350 to support rooftop gardening at the Josiah Quincy Elementary School in Boston’s Chinatown

Josiah Qunicy Upper School - $500 to support mental health resources for high school students

Strong Women, Strong Girls - $500 to support a mentoring program for girls in grades 3-5 througout the Greater Boston area

Friday Night Supper Program - $750 for a weekly dinner program for homeless individuals and their Healthy Food Initiative

Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center - $800 to purchase supplies for a student organized youth leadership conference; Tufts University will provide the space as well

Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence - $1,000 to help fund social gatherings for their current and past clients

Fenway Community Center - $1,000 to support a series of arts workshops for members of the Fenway community

Greater Boston Chinese Golden Age Center - $1,000 to fund an educational workshop series for Asian seniors about end of life information

Ricesticks and Tea Asian Food Pantry - $1,000 to stock their food pantry in Chinatown

Josiah Quincy Elementary School - $1,100 to purchase auditorium risers for music and arts performances

The Grafton grant recipients are:

Apple Tree Arts - $1,000 to purchase instruments for their early childhood music programming

Community Harvest Project - $1,000 towards their nutrient management plan, soil fertility efforts, and crop rotation

Grafton Senior Center - $1,000 towards the purchase of a wheelchair-equipped passenger van

Saint James Outreach/ Saint James Church - $1,000 for their emergency relief fund, which supports residents in need

The Medford grant recipients are:

Columbus Elementary School PTO - $250 to support costs for their Annual Science Night

Medford Family Network - $250 for the "Welcome Baby" program which provides resources to new parents and their babies in Medford

Medford Public Shools (Middle School Libraries) - $250 towards supplies for a library makerspace promoting STEAM activities and educational opportunities

Roberts Elementary School PTO - $250 towards supporting the costs of a cultural diversity event, "International Night"

English At Large - $500 towards the purchase of curriculum materials and learning aids for their Beginner English Program for local immigrants

Friends of Middlesex Fells Reservation - $500 towards funding the purchase of  professional grafitti removal equipment

Mystic River Watershed Association - $500 to support a litter removal campaign in Medford

West Medford Communty Center - $500 towards programming designed to engage high school aged youth

Malden YMCA - $1,400 to purchase an additional refrigeration unit in their Mystic Community Market food pantry

Community Cupboard Food Pantry - $1,800 to purchase food for their pantry

Congregational Church of West Medford - $1,800 to fund cost of preparing 25,000 free meals for families in need

The Somerville grant recipients are:

The Beautiful Stuff Project - $300 for art and supplies to fill "treasure boxes" for early childhood classrooms

Center for Arabic Culture - $400 towards the purchase of a traditional Middle Eastern instrument for their Youth Orchestra

East Somerville Main Streets - $400 for marketing and supply costs for neighborhood clean-ups

Second Chances - $450 towards marketing and technology investments for 15th anniversary fundraising efforts

Mystic Learning Center - $600 for costs associated with tuning the piano housed in the Mystic Activity Center's Community Room

RESPOND, Inc. - $1,000 to fund summer programs for children living in their shelter for domestic violence victims

Somerville Homeless Coaltion - $1,500 to support their housing stability "Coordinated Entry Program" for homeless individuals

Hearty Meals For All - $1,600 towards the cost of funding a free monthly meal

CASPAR, Inc. - $1,750 to purchase bed linens and towels for their Emergency Services Shelter


# # #

About Tufts University

Tufts University, located on campuses in Boston, Medford/Somerville and Grafton, Massachusetts, and in Talloires, France, is recognized among the premier research universities in the United States. Tufts enjoys a global reputation for academic excellence and for the preparation of students as leaders in a wide range of professions. A growing number of innovative teaching and research initiatives span all Tufts campuses, and collaboration among the faculty and students in the undergraduate, graduate and professional programs across the university's schools is widely encouraged.

Back to Top