Eight local nonprofits to receive COVID-19 recovery funds to promote economic development, health equity and wellbeing in Latino communities.
The Latino Equity Fund (LEF) today announced $200,000 in grants to eight Latino-focused organizations as part of the LEF’s COVID-19 Response Fund partnership with The Boston Foundation. The funds will be distributed to the grantee partners as they continue to provide enhanced services to help Latino communities recover from the strains caused by COVID-19 and the longer-term economic challenges the pandemic unleashed.
The grant announcement comes as the new report, ¡Avancemos Ya!: Persistent Economic Challenges and Opportunities Facing Latinos in Massachusetts was published by The Latino Equity Fund in partnership with Boston Indicators and the Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy at UMass Boston.
The report seeks to highlight opportunities to improve economic conditions among Massachusetts’ Latino communities. The report traces the historical and demographic roots of the state’s unique Latino communities, and outlines six trends that have shaped the current situation for the state’s Latinos and that can serve as pathways for future opportunities.
The pandemic exacerbated long-standing challenges facing Latinos. Today, for example, a quarter or more of the 800,000 Latinos in Massachusetts struggle with food insecurity, and data show Massachusetts Latinos have low rates of intergenerational economic mobility. Yet the report also sheds light on how the economic rebound from the 2020 recession provides opportunities to improve socioeconomic conditions.
“LEF’s mobilization of funds is a true testament to our commitment to action in response to data and advancing recovery for many of our community leaders still balancing the effects of COVID on their operations,” said Evelyn Barahona, Director of Latino Equity Fund. “We selected organizations whose leadership and position in the community is mission critical to promoting economic prosperity, health equity and wellbeing for Latinos in Massachusetts.”
Eight nonprofits will each receive $25,000 to aid in the continued development of resources for accelerating and promoting sustainable pathways for recovery. The funds support organizations working in areas such as job training, economic and income supports for businesses and families, affordable housing and homebuying programs, increased access to early education and care to allow caregivers greater ability to work, and support for entrepreneurs and others targeting areas of opportunity in the Gateway Cities.
The organizations include:
1. Mauricio Gastón Institute for Latino Community Development and Public Policy (Boston)
2. Maverick Landing Community Services (MLCS) (East Boston)
3. Mujeres Unidas Avanzando (MUA) (Dorchester)
4. La Alianza Hispana, Inc. (Boston)
5. Centro Comunitario de Trabajadores (New Bedford)
6. Latinx Health Collaborative (Boston/Regional)
7. The Latino Health Insurance Program, Inc. (Framingham)
8. Sociedad Latina (Roxbury)
“These grants address a number of the issue areas highlighted in ¡Avancemos Ya!, as part of the LEF’s larger strategy to work with our nonprofit partners to provide greater equity for Latinos,” said Juan Fernando Lopera, Co-Chair of the Latino Equity Fund. “At a time when Massachusetts faces an outstanding need for workers, empowering our talented, entrepreneurial and fast-growing Latino communities to fill that need is a crucial step that provides benefits for everyone in the state.”
“LEF is committed to deepening our community investments to provide culturally sensitive and timely grantmaking,” said Aixa Beauchamp, Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Latino Equity Fund. “Through responsive and innovative initiatives, we can create a community and philanthropic network for diverse donors to connect and learn. We will continue to aid Latino and BIPOC communities through this public health and economic crisis to see a brighter future.”