Recently announced $2 million in COVID-19 grants support culturally-inclusive outreach and access to vaccines
BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Eastern Bank Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Boston-based Eastern Bank, recently announced an additional $2 million in COVID-19 support to increase last mile vaccination outreach and access. Vaccination rates, while progressing, also highlight the inequities experienced in communities of color within Gateway Cities of Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
The Eastern Bank Foundation is collaborating with community health centers, foundations, community organizations and other companies to address the disparities and reach populations living in cities with the highest incidence rate of COVID-19 cases to get them access to the vaccine. Philanthropic support is provided in three areas:
Vaccine access—investing in the work of community health centers, mobile vaccination vans and buses, and pop-up vaccination sites;
Culturally-inclusive outreach—investing in grassroots community partners with trusting relationships to the community members they serve, door-to-door outreach, and multilingual vaccination resources; and
Advocacy—partnering with community organizations to advocate for equity in vaccine access for communities of color.
In Massachusetts, grant recipients include:
In New Hampshire, grant recipients include:
International Institute of New England in Manchester
“It is clear that COVID-19 is still having its greatest impact in our gateway cities. We are so very thankful to our community health centers, trusted community-based organizations, and public-private partnerships for their focus on last mile vaccination outreach, and their commitment to ensuring no one is left behind,” said Nancy Huntington Stager, President and CEO of the Eastern Bank Foundation. “These next several months are critical to getting as many people as possible vaccinated, and the timing of this grant funding is intended to boost efforts that overcome barriers to vaccination.”
Vanessa Calderón-Rosado, Ph.D. and Chief Executive Officer of Inquilinos Boricuas en Acción (IBA) Boston, said, “Thanks to the support of the Eastern Bank Foundation we have expanded our efforts to bring expert information to our community about the importance of the COVID-19 vaccine, and to coordinate vaccine appointments and rides to them. It is critical that we keep these vaccination efforts up, as new coronavirus variants take hold in our country, state and community. As we experienced the disproportionate negative impact of the pandemic in low-income communities of color, we are committed to prevent this from happening again.”
Beth Francis, President and CEO of Essex County Community Foundation, said, “With Eastern Bank Foundation’s grant, we are able to expand our efforts to vaccine equity for populations who have been hardest hit by the pandemic. We’re committed to getting underserved communities vaccinated and offering the crucial support needed at this time, and hiring local residents and working with our community health centers and experienced marketing and media partners like Archipelago Strategies Group and El Mundo to get this done in the most meaningful and trusting way possible.”
Angie Liou, Executive Director of Asian Community Development Corporation (ACDC), said, “Asian Community Development Corporation is grateful for Eastern Bank Foundation’s commitment to vaccine equity. The Foundation’s generous grant supports our collaborative efforts with community partners in Chinatown, Dorchester, Lowell, Malden and Quincy to serve immigrant communities with the culturally competent services and resources that they need to get vaccinated and stay safe.”
Rick Minard, Executive Director of Building Community in New Hampshire (BCNH), said, “Most members of the refugee communities that BCNH serves have already been vaccinated. The Eastern Bank Foundation donation enables us to mobilize vaccinated community members to reach out to their hesitant neighbors, probably one at a time. BCNH works primarily with Bhutanese, Congolese and Rohingya refugees in Concord, Manchester and Nashua. This project will allow us to include in that community other immigrants and people of color. We expect the impact to be profoundly beneficial.”
In 2020, the Eastern Bank Foundation supported COVID-19 efforts with donations to 665 community-based organizations totaling more than $13 million, in such areas as aid to immigrants, the elderly, victims of domestic violence, mental health services and community health centers, food banks and pantries, multi-service providers and community foundations, early childhood development providers, safe and affordable housing providers, and organizations assisting businesses of color. The $2 million in COVID-19 relief for last mile vaccination efforts brings the Foundation’s total COVID-19 support to $15 million.
About Eastern Bank Foundation
Created in 1994, the Eastern Bank Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Boston-based Eastern Bank. Through philanthropy, employee volunteerism, advocacy and collaborations with other businesses and community partners, Eastern Bank Foundation responds to community needs and supports sustainable solutions to our communities’ most vexing challenges across eastern Massachusetts, southern and coastal New Hampshire, and Rhode Island. To learn more, visit easternbank.com/foundation.
About Eastern Bank
Founded in 1818, Boston-based Eastern Bank has more than 110 locations serving communities in eastern Massachusetts, southern and coastal New Hampshire, and Rhode Island. As of March 31, 2021, Eastern Bank had approximately $17 billion in total assets. Eastern provides banking, investment and insurance products and services for consumers and businesses of all sizes, including through its Eastern Wealth Management division and its Eastern Insurance Group LLC subsidiary. Eastern takes pride in its outspoken advocacy and community support that includes $240 million in charitable giving since 1994. An inclusive company, Eastern employs approximately 1,900 deeply committed professionals who value relationships with their customers, colleagues and communities. Join us for good at www.easternbank.com and follow Eastern on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram. Eastern Bankshares, Inc. (Nasdaq Global Select Market: EBC) is the stock holding company for Eastern Bank. For investor information, visit investor.easternbank.com.