$2,200 Raised to Support Local Men and Boys’ Needs

On Monday, June 25th, 52 people attended “Raise a Pint,” the initial fundraiser for the Men & Boys’ Fund at Main Street Community Foundation raising more than $2,200 to fund grants for existing programs and to provide for small immediate needs.

“The community response exceeded our expectations,” said Rodger Stotz, chair of the Men & Boys’ Fund. “Then again, maybe it shouldn’t have. We know the greater Bristol community is full of generous, caring people.”

Since its establishment late in 2016, the Men & Boys’ Fund has worked to make it possible for men and boys to improve the quality of their lives, increase their self-sufficiency, and make a positive difference in their communities. The fund serves Bristol, Burlington, Plainville, Plymouth, Southington, and Wolcott.

Hosted by Main Street Pint & Plate Restaurant, “Raise a Pint” event provided one free drink and a wide sampling of hors d’oeuvres showcasing the menu items at the newly opened Bristol eatery owned and operated by J.R. and Leanne Rusgrove. Attendees heard two short, informal presentations giving background on the needs of local men and boys and the fund’s results to date.

“At Main Street Community Foundation, we’ve been delighted by the Men & Boys’ Fund’s early success,” said Susan Sadecki, President & CEO of the Foundation. “Under Rodger Stotz’s leadership, the 11-person Men & Boys’ Fund Advisory Board has helped to raise awareness of the needs of men and boys and the Fund has distributed several grants grants to local agencies.”

Last fall the Fund awarded a total of $3,200 in grants to the Parent and Child Center at Bristol Hospital and Bristol Youth Services. This fall the goal is to provide grants totaling $6,000. In addition to the program grants, eight men and boys have been given a helping hand through the Men & Boys’ Immediate Response Fund. Those needs included clothes for a job interview, funds to attend a national high school leadership conference, and rental assistance for a family.

In his presentation, Rodger Stotz referred to the “Raise a Pint” event as both a fundraiser and a friend-raiser. The Men & Boys’ Fund wants to become better known as an additional resource to help boys develop their talents, potential, and skills and help men become more self-sufficient and stronger contributors to their communities. To date, the Men & Boys’ Fund has built an endowment of more than $30,000.

One Advisory Board Member, Larry Covino, serves as director of the alternative high school in Bristol. “What may seem like a small amount to us can make a big difference in the life of a struggling boy or man,” he said.