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May 12, 2021
Barr Foundation Grants $2M to Advance Vaccine Equity
Barr Foundation

March 19, 2021 — The Barr Foundation, based in Boston, this week announced nearly $2 million in grants to Massachusetts nonprofit organizations to support a range of activities centered on vaccine equity.

The Barr Foundation said it awarded $1 million to the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers, which serves as an information source on community-based health care, to enable the league “to direct resources expeditiously” to community health centers as they expand vaccination efforts.

“Serving more than one million residents, Massachusetts’ community health centers are essential distribution channels in the equitable delivery of the vaccine, given their proximity to communities of color and the trusted role they occupy in their communities,” the foundation noted. “As the Kaiser Family Foundation recently reported, more than half of those patients receiving first doses of the vaccine from community health centers have been people of color.”

The foundation also provided:

  • $475,000 to the Black Boston COVID-19 Coalition, the Chinatown Collaborative, the Greater Boston Latino Network, and the Center to Support Immigrant Organizing, which together will support approximately 30 organizations engaged in local, community-based outreach and education focused on vaccine equity.

  • $500,000 in grants to the Essex County Community Foundation in Danvers, the Greater Worcester Community Foundation in Worcester, the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts in Springfield, and the SouthCoast Community Foundation in New Bedford to support local regranting efforts in each region for community-based organizations focused on vaccine equity.

The foundation said it funded the four community foundations because there is significant overlap between the geographic areas served by these community foundations and the twenty cities identified by the state as priorities for vaccine equity.

In addition, the Barr Foundation said it will support advocacy efforts of the recently formed Vaccine Equity Now! Coalition that have shaped recommendations for the state to address disparities in the vaccine rollout. Members of the coalition are:

  • ACLU of Massachusetts
  • Black Boston COVID-19 Coalition
  • Immigrants Assistance Center
  • King Boston
  • La Colaborativa
  • Lawyers for Civil Rights
  • Massachusetts Immigrant & Refugee Advocacy Coalition
  • Massachusetts Public Health Association
  • NAACP, New England Area Conference
  • Southeast Asian Coalition of Central Massachusetts
  • Union of Minority Neighborhoods
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