BUW and BTCF Announce $1.1M Invested in Emergency Response Efforts

COVID-10 Fund has raised over $2 million with gifts from local partners, Boston’s Barr Foundation

Berkshire United Way and Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation have awarded over 60 grants totaling $1.1 million from the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund for Berkshire County, their joint effort with Northern Berkshire United Way and Williamstown Community Chest to raise new resources in support of community-based organizations at the frontlines of the coronavirus outbreak.

“This fund is providing a rapid response to the increased challenges our nonprofits face as they provide services to our neighbors in greatest need,” said Peter Taylor, president of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation. “These organizations are deeply rooted in their communities and quick to action. Their work inspires us as we aim to provide ongoing support from our generous friends and partners.”

The organizations receiving grants are dispersed across Berkshire County and work to support children and low-income families, communities of color and immigrants, seniors, and people with mental illness and addiction disorders, among others. A collaborative team of staff from Berkshire Taconic, Berkshire United Way, Northern Berkshire United Way, and Williamstown Community Chest is reviewing and awarding grants on a rolling basis during the crisis as funding permits.

“It is truly amazing to see so many nonprofits come together and collaborate on projects that are feeding our neighbors, providing shelter for our homeless, and offering child care for essential workers. We are here to support the incredible work of our nonprofit partners as they respond to increasing and evolving needs across the county,” said Candace Winkler, president and CEO of Berkshire United Way. “We appreciate our fund partners, as well as individuals and workplaces, for their immediate and generous response to help our nonprofits through this fund.”

Grantees from the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund for Berkshire County include: 18 Degrees, Adams Council on Aging, Al Nelson Friendship Center Food Pantry, Berkshire Bridges Working Cities, Berkshire Community Action Council, Berkshire County Arc, Berkshire County Diaper Project, Berkshire Dream Center, Berkshire Family YMCA, Berkshire Food Project, Berkshire Grown, Berkshire Health Systems/Cancer Center & Macony Pediatrics, Berkshire Helping Hands, Berkshire Hills Regional School District, Berkshire Housing Development Corporation & Berkshire Housing Services, Berkshire Immigrant Center, Berkshire Nursing Families, Berkshire South Regional Community Center, Berkshire Tomorrow, Inc. (BRPC) Weekend Restaurant Program, BRIDGE, Cathedral of the Beloved, Central Berkshire Coordinating Center, Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, Central Berkshire Regional School District, Central Berkshire Regional School District Weekend Backpack Program, Chabad of the Berkshires, Cheshire Food Pantry, Christ Trinity Church, Community Bible Church, Community Food Pantry at South Congregational Church, Community Health Programs, Construct, Dalton Community Recreation Association, Elder Services of Berkshire County, Elizabeth Freeman Center, Gladys Allen Brigham Community Center, Josh Bressette Commit to Save a Life, Louison House, Mass 2-1-1, Mount Carmel Care Center, NAMI Berkshire County, North Adams Farmers Market, North County Emergency Planning Commission, Northern Berkshire Community Coalition Weekend Meal Project, Northern Berkshire EMS, Our Lady of Charity (St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church), Pittsfield Public Schools, Roots Rising, ROOTS Teen Center, Salvation Army, ServiceNet, Soldier On, South Berkshire Emergency Response Center, South Berkshire Regional School District, The Brien Center, UCP of Western MA, Volunteers in Medicine Berkshires, Western Mass Labor Action, Williamstown Food Pantry, Women’s Fund of Western Massachsuetts and Youth Center Inc. Read more about each grantee’s work.

Fundraising for the emergency fund, which launched on March 19, has reached over $2 million. The fund has received a $250,000 grant from the Barr Foundation, and gifts and commitments from major donors including Adams Community Bank, Berkshire Bank Foundation, Callahan Dee Family Foundation, the Joyce and Fred Crane family’s Cooper Meadow Fund at Berkshire Taconic, the Feigenbaum Foundation, the Jane & Jack Fitzpatrick Trust, the Fuqua Family Fund at Berkshire Taconic, the Gilson Family Foundation, Greylock Federal Credit Union, Lee Bank, the Madroño Foundation, Mill Town, MountainOne, Mary Pope Osborne, the Joseph H. and Carol F. Reich Fund at Berkshire Taconic, Unistress, and Williams College, with initial resources and seed funding from Berkshire United Way and Berkshire Taconic. A list of the fund’s generous partners is online at www.BerkshireUnitedWay.org/BerkshireCountyCovid19Fund. Donations to the fund can be made at www.BerkshireUnitedWay.org/donate.