May 26, 2018
Comm. Foundation of SE Mass. Grants $87K to Eight Nonprofits

March 19, 2017 — The Community Foundation of Southeastern Massachusetts, based in New Bedford, last week announced that it has awarded $87,000 to eight area nonprofits that provide services relating to workforce development and early literacy issues.

John Vasconcellos, president of the Community Foundation of Southeastern Massachusetts, said the funds, provided by the Polaroid Fund and the Acushnet Foundation Early Literacy Consortium, will support advocacy, workforce development, as well as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), Adult Basic Education (ABE), and General Education Development (GED) classes:
  • Community Economic Development Center: $12,000 in renewed funding for the ESOL/Immigrant Support Network, a neighborhood based ESOL program and workforce development services and support for a pilot program to reach out to newly arrived immigrant youth via afterschool academic support through arts-based curriculum.

  • Holy Union Sisters / Sister Barbara Walsh: $15,000 in renewed support for Open ESOL, which provides educational services to non-English speaking immigrants, particularly single parents. The program offers interactive computer learning activities, as well as workbook and conversational experiences - all designed to enhance the learning of English grammar, vocabulary and speaking skills.

  • Immigrants Assistance Center: $15,000 in renewed support for ESOL classes with civics and citizenship preparation.

  • Junior Achievement of New Bedford: $5,500 for Investing in the Future at the Gomes School, the expansion of a JA program for grades K-5 at the Gomes Elementary school, reaching 23 classes (600+ students) and providing grade-appropriate curriculum focusing on personal economics, the importance of education, the contributions of productive citizens and families to community, and skills to make smart academic and economic choices in the future.

  • New Bedford Art Museum/ArtWorks!: $10,000 in renewed funding to continue and expand Learning Studio: Early Literacy through the Arts, an interactive arts experience which provides ABE/ESOL parents and caregivers experiences that engage parents in their children's learning and foster literacy..

  • PEOPLE, Inc. : $7,000 for SMILES to expand the after-school mentoring program at Parker Elementary to include an afterschool pilot serving 10 at-risk students and their families. Students' parents will be offered ESL classes while students meet with their mentors.

  • United Interfaith Action: $7,500 in renewed support for Building Opportunity for Good Paying Jobs, which works to increase good job opportunities for those marginalized from the labor market in New Bedford.

  • Women’s Fund of Southeastern Mass. : $15,000 in renewed funding for the LifeWork Project, which is in the fourth year of a five-year program that enhances the career opportunities and fiscal management skills of economically challenged women in GNB.
In addition, the foundation announced that it awarded $6,000 in renewed support to Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School/Adult ESOL Program for an Adult ESL program and $7,000 in renewed funding to the City of New Bedford Dept. of Community Services for Shining Lights/ESOL: Civic Literacy/ESOL Project.

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