FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Lee Schurter, Communities Together, Inc. (978) 686-4012, [email protected]
Contact: Joyce Vyriotes, Cummings Foundation, 781-932-7072, [email protected]
COMMUNITIES TOGETHER, INC.
COMMUNITIES TOGETHER, INC, Lawrence, MA nonprofit
receives Cummings Foundation grant
Lawrence, June 7, 2019 – COMMUNITIES TOGETHER, INC. is one of 100 local nonprofits to receive grants of $100,000 each through Cummings Foundation’s “$100K for 100” program. The Lawrence-based organization was chosen from a total of 574 applicants during a competitive review process.
Communities Together, Inc. is a collaborative of Catholic and Protestant churches in the communities of Andover, Lawrence, Methuen and North Andover which provides and supports many community programs that are beyond the means of any individual congregation. The organization works closely with social service agencies in the area to provide assistance within the Greater Lawrence area.
Representing Communities Together, Inc., Lee Schurter – Executive Director and Andrea EK Vannett – Board Member, joined approximately 300 other guests at a reception at TradeCenter 128 in Woburn to celebrate the $10 million infusion into Greater Boston’s nonprofit sector. With the conclusion of this grant cycle, Cummings Foundation has now awarded more than $260 million to Greater Boston nonprofits alone.
At the monthly Board of Directors meeting on June 3, 2019, board members expressed gratitude for the generosity of the Cummings Foundation. One member summed up the feelings of the others: “It is humbling to know that organizations like the Cummings Foundation find value in the work that we do in meeting the needs of the children of Lawrence”.
Communities Together, Inc. will continue to provide Manos Felices!, an after-school program and summer enrichment program to elementary-aged children living in the Hancock Courts and Stadium Courts Housing Projects. Grant funds will allow the organization to increase their emphasis on academia and to provide more stimulating activities and off-site visits to museums, art galleries, etc. A Mentors Program will be implemented to encourage children who age-out of the program to remain in school.
The $100K for 100 program supports nonprofits that are based in and primarily serve Middlesex, Essex, and Suffolk counties. Through this place-based initiative, Cummings Foundation aims to give back in the area where it owns commercial buildings, all of which are managed, at no cost to the Foundation, by its affiliate Cummings Properties. Founded in 1970 by Bill Cummings, the Woburn-based commercial real estate firm leases and manages 10 million square feet of space, the majority of which exclusively benefits the Foundation.
“By having such a local focus, we aim to make a meaningful positive difference in the communities where our colleagues and leasing clients live and work,” said Joel Swets, Cummings Foundation’s executive director. “We are most grateful for the nonprofit organizations that assist and empower our neighbors, and we are proud to support their efforts.”
This year’s diverse group of grant recipients represents a wide variety of causes, including homelessness prevention, affordable housing, education, violence prevention, and food insecurity. Most of the grants will be paid over two to five years.
The complete list of 100 grant winners is available at www.CummingsFoundation.org.
Cummings Foundation announced an additional $15 million in early May through its Sustaining Grants program. Through these awards, 50 local nonprofits will receive ongoing funding of $20,000 - $50,000 for 10 years.
The history behind Cummings Properties and Cummings Foundation is detailed in Bill Cummings’ self-written memoir, “Starting Small and Making It Big: An Entrepreneur’s Journey to Billion-Dollar Philanthropist.” It is available on Amazon or cummings.com/book.
About Communities Together, Inc. – Manos Felices!
The Manos Felices! program serves the children of the Hancock Courts Housing Project and Stadium Courts Housing Project in Lawrence by offering an after school and summer enrichment program for children from kindergarten to age 13. Their families are among the poorest in Lawrence. The program provides homework help and tutoring for reading which may not be available to the children at home. The greater benefit to the children, their families and the Lawrence community is that Manos Felices! is equipping the children to become contributors to a brighter future for all of Lawrence.
About Cummings Foundation
Woburn-based Cummings Foundation, Inc. was established in 1986 by Joyce and Bill Cummings. The Foundation directly operates its own charitable subsidiaries, including New Horizons retirement communities in Marlborough and Woburn. Its largest single commitment to date has been to Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. Additional information is available at www.CummingsFoundation.org.
PHOTO: Manos Felices! Children express excitement over the generous grant.