Campus & Community

Harvard Allston Partnership Fund awards $100,000 to Allston-Brighton nonprofits

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Harvard fund has infused $400,000 into 19 local organizations over four years

The Harvard Allston Partnership Fund (HAPF) today announced that nine local nonprofits will receive grants totaling $100,000 to support programs in the Allston-Brighton community. The HAPF — a program created in 2008 by Harvard University and the city of Boston, in collaboration with the Allston community — recognizes and supports organizations that provide Allston-Brighton residents with youth enrichment, educational programs, and engaging activities for the elderly and people with disabilities.

The grants are the fourth installment in HAPF grant-making that has infused $400,000 Harvard dollars into 19 local nonprofits over the past four years. The awards will be formally presented at a ceremony later this winter.

“This is a great example of a local institution supporting its neighbors,” said Mayor Thomas M. Menino. “For the past four years the Harvard Allston Partnership Fund has strengthened the community by providing financial assistance to local nonprofits. These nonprofits are instrumental in creating opportunity, furthering education, and bringing vital services to our families and seniors.”

“This year’s HAPF recipients provide important services that directly benefit residents in the North Allston-North Brighton community and we’re pleased to offer our support. We are all part of a local nonprofit network that is making a real difference in Allston-Brighton in so many ways,” said Christine Heenan, Harvard’s vice president for public affairs and communications.

The recipients of the fourth round of HAPF grants are:

  • Charles River Conservancy: $5,000 to support 10 volunteer events that will enable residents in North Allston-North Brighton and students from neighborhood schools, including the Horace Mann School for the Deaf, the Gardner Pilot Academy, and Brighton High School, to work together on maintenance and improvement projects along the shores of the Charles in North Allston-North Brighton;
  • Family Nurturing Center of Massachusetts: $4,850 to support a Chinese families’ playgroup for Chinese parents and grandparents and children 5 and under at the Honan-Allston Library (a total of $21,990 in HAPF grants over three years);
  • Friends of the Honan-Allston Library: $9,000 to support the creation of a new space with computer tables and lounge seating especially for local teens (a total of $13,975 in HAPF grants over three years);
  • Gardner Pilot Academy: $24,920 to fund the enrollment of Allston-Brighton children and adults in GPA programs, including After School, Summer Enrichment, Adult Education, and Basic English Instruction (a total of $75,000 in HAPF grants over three years);
  • Oak Square YMCA: $15,000 to provide fitness and nutrition programs at the Vocational Advancement Center and the Veronica B. Smith Senior Center over the next year;
  • The Fishing Academy: $10,000 to enable Allston-Brighton youth free admission to group fishing excursions that will introduce them to the natural resources of Eastern Massachusetts and help reinforce teamwork, discipline, and self-confidence (a total of $45,000 in HAPF  grants over four years);
  • The Literacy Connection, a ministry of the congregation of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Boston: $8,850 to support English literacy training, tutoring, and citizenship preparation classes for Allston-Brighton residents (a total of $18,650 in HAPF grants over two years);
  • Vocational Advancement Center (VAC): $18,380 to cover tuition costs for local residents with disabilities enrolled in the VAC’s Computer Training Program, one of several programs that assist individuals in choosing, obtaining, and retaining meaningful employment (a total of $43,380 in HAPF grants over two years);
  • West End House Camp: $4,000 to send eight boys from Allston-Brighton to a two-week summer camp in Maine where leadership skills, teamwork, and confidence are built through outdoor activities, educational programs, and sports in a natural environment (a total of $8,800 in HAPF grants over three years).

“The Oak Square YMCA is committed to strengthening our community,” said Jack Fucci, executive director of the Oak Square YMCA. “It is important to ensure that everyone, regardless of age or ability, has access to wellness programs that will keep them healthy. With the support of the Harvard Allston Partnership Fund, the Y is able to deliver group exercise classes for free to the residents of the Allston-Brighton community closer to their homes and places of work. The Y, the Vocational Advancement Center, and the Veronica Smith Senior Center have extended their reach and have become stronger through this partnership and we are very grateful.”

The Harvard Allston Partnership Fund is a $500,000 five-year program created in 2008 by Harvard University and the city of Boston, in collaboration with the Allston community, to support neighborhood improvement projects, cultural enrichment, and educational programming in North Allston-North Brighton. Funding decisions are made by a volunteer board of community members following careful review of the many creative and constructive applications received. Over the years the fund has become a critical revenue stream for local nonprofits struggling in the downturn economy.