Main Street Community Foundation Shifts Focus Amid COVID-19 Pandemic, Awards Over $465,000 in Operating Grants to Nonprofits

Local nonprofits are struggling due to the challenging effects of the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic - there has been a significant increase in the demand for their services and a simultaneous decrease in both program and fundraising revenue. Main Street Community Foundation has listened to the nonprofits in your communities and adapted its grantmaking guidelines to provide funding for what is needed the most: unrestricted operating support. This month, $465,226 in general operating support grants were awarded to help sustain nonprofit organizations in Bristol, Burlington, Plainville, Plymouth, Southington and Wolcott.

“The Board of Directors took action and recognized the challenges facing our local nonprofits during this extraordinary time,” stated Susan Sadecki, President & CEO of the Foundation. “Back in March, we joined hundreds of foundations throughout the country in partnership with the Council on Foundations to pledge our commitment to more flexible funding to help grantee partners meet emerging needs prompted by the COVID-19 crisis.”

Unrestricted operating support grants totaling $112,353 were awarded to 18 organizations from the COVID-19 Response Fund, the Bristol Brass General Grant Fund, the KAWFY Memorial Fund and several donor advised funds: the Clement Family Fund, the Hamzy Family Charitable Fund and the Pat & Bob Wollenberg Charitable Fund. The grants ranged from $2,000 to $20,000 and the organizations awarded are:

  • American Clock & Watch Museum
  • Animal Rescue Foundation, Inc.
  • Boys & Girls Club of Bristol
  • Brian’s Angels Homeless Outreach Center
  • Bristol Preschool Childcare Center, Inc.
  • Bristol Recovery Club
  • Community Counseling Centers of Central Connecticut, Inc.
  • Environmental Learning Centers of Connecticut, Inc.
  • Imagine Nation, A Museum Early Learning Center
  • Lock Museum of America, Inc.
  • New England Carousel Museum
  • Nutmeg Symphony Orchestra, Inc.
  • Plainville Community Food Pantry
  • Shepard Meadows Therapeutic Riding Center, Inc.
  • St. Vincent DePaul Mission of Bristol
  • Tabernacle Christian Church – Giving Back Food Pantry
  • United Way of West Central Connecticut
  • Veterans Strong Community Center

After careful assessment of the needs in Southington, MSCF awarded $352,873 in unrestricted operating support grants from the Bradley Henry Barnes & Leila Upson Barnes Memorial Trust to nine organizations. The Trust was originally established in 1973 by the late Bradley Henry Barnes to support the health and well-being of Southington residents. The grants ranged from $12,500 to $100,000 and the organizations awarded are:

  • Arc of Southington, Inc
  • Bread For Life
  • Early Childhood Collaborative of Southington
  • LiveWell Alliance
  • Prudence Crandall Center, Inc.
  • Senior Transportation Services
  • Southington-Cheshire Community YMCAs
  • Southington Community Cultural Arts
  • United Way of Southington

“These nonprofits are providing critical services to residents in need,” said Sadecki. “We want to provide relief today so we can keep our community strong for tomorrow.”
Main Street Community Foundation will continue COVID-19 response and recovery efforts into 2021 and beyond. The Foundation encourages individual donors, businesses and other funders to consider a contribution to the COVID-19 Response Fund if they are able, at mainstreetfoundation.org/covid19-fund.