The Worcester Together Fund announced over $150,000 of grants to the first round of recipients today. The fund, a joint effort between the Greater Worcester Community Foundation, the United Way of Central Massachusetts and the City of Worcester, supports the needs of local organizations working with communities disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak in Worcester County.

“The Foundation is thrilled to be able to work with our partners at the United Way of Central Massachusetts to put these funds to work in the community,” said GWCF President and CEO Barbara Fields. “These grantees are doing amazing work to protect our community from the impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak, and we are proud to stand by their side.”

The grants, totaling $158,208, represent the first of numerous rounds of funding through Worcester Together, and are directed towards meeting the immediate needs of organizations serving communities and individuals who are heavily impacted by the current crisis. The grants are targeted to organizations that serve child care needs for essential workers and first responders, vulnerable populations (including the elderly) and emergency food and shelter.

“This round of funding is only the beginning,” said Tim Garvin, CEO of the United Way of Central Massachusetts. “We are currently focused on meeting the urgent needs of the community as we continue to respond to the rapidly evolving dimensions of the outbreak. Future grant cycles will look towards meeting the long-term needs of organizations to ensure that they can thrive once this crisis is behind us.”

The grantee organizations are:



Boys & Girls Club Worcester

Childcare consortium for essential workers and first responders

Building Futures Inc.

For the purchase of entertainment materials for elderly residents of Worcester Housing Authority to help reduce effects of social isolation

Catholic Charities

3 grants to purchase food, formula, diapers & hygiene products to stock their pantries in Worcester, Southbridge, Milford and Leominster.

Dismas House of Massachusetts, Inc.

2 grants to support food purchases for the men residing at Dismas house

Friendly House, Inc.

Support for the purchase of food, food vouchers, shelter/housing costs and related staffing

Living in Freedom Together (LIFT)

to support their outreach program for women who have overcome sexual explotation

Mass 211

To build capacity of the hotline to enable more staffed hours responding to the influx of calls

Net of Compassion

2 grants- One to support start up costs for the 4 emergency shelters in the City of Worcester and a second to support meals at the shelter

Pernet Family Services

To support emergency assistance to families and to purchase food and baby supplies

Project New Hope

To keep the food and baby pantry stocked. Serve Active-Duty & Veteran individuals and families

Rachel's Table (fs Jewish Federation of Central MA)

For the purchase of 6-8 weeks of milk that is distributed through food pantries across the county

Regional Environmental Council

A pilot program to support access for low income residents to still utilize the HIP (Healthy Incentive Program) benefit and have access to fresh produce

Southeast Asian Coalition of Central Massachusetts

Culturally-relevant supports immigrant & refugee individuals and families. Services include translation services, staffing a hotline to connect people to resources and delivering items to those in need.


2 grants for emergency support for their women's domestic violence shelter operations

GWCF and UWCM invite institutions, companies, individuals and other funders to contribute to the Worcester Together fund at and The Worcester Together fund is also working with the City of Worcester, local officials throughout the County and other funders to give the Fund maximum reach and effectiveness. In addition to offering an opportunity to contribute to the Fund, the partners in the fund also urge donors to directly support the critical needs of nonprofits by making general operating support grants to organizations they wish to help.