Gerstner Philanthropies (gerstner.org) announced today that it has awarded $4.9 million to 44 social services organizations to be used for grants to individuals facing a one-time, urgent need. Gerstner made the awards as part of its Helping Hands program, which continues to prove instrumental in helping families stabilize from the devastating impacts of COVID-19 and natural disasters. Emergency grants have been a core part of Gerstner’s work for over a decade, with this year’s grants bringing the total Helping Hands funding to nearly $25 million. Over 4,000 families are helped each year with eviction and other urgent needs, such as utilities, medical expenses, and food. A key to this program’s success is the comprehensive social support services provided to families in conjunction with the emergency grant. The organizations who received grants in this most recent round of funding are located in and/or serve New York City and Westchester County, NY; Palm Beach County, FL; and Boston, MA.Read more about our 2022 Grantees
Our Helping Hands grantees continue to feel the impact of the COVID-19 crisis. Throughout the year, we communicate with our partners informally and formally. They report data on program statistics that we compile to highlight larger trends. Based on third quarter reports, need for rental arrearages assistance remains high, with many clients facing a looming eviction crisis. Federal funding for rental assistance helped many, we join in the call for additional rental assistance funding to help families regain their stability.
For the second annual year, two of Gerstner Philanthropies’ long-standing grantees helped provide meals to families in need this Thanksgiving. Treasure Coast Food Bank, the largest hunger-relief organization on Florida’s Treasure Coast and the only Food Bank serving Indian River, Martin, St. Lucie and Okeechobee counties, distributed holiday meal boxes and turkeys to 500 families. Nearly 500 turkeys were packaged with other meal stables and distributed to around 2,000 children and adults thanks to a grant from Gerstner Philanthropies. In Massachussetts, FamilyAid Boston, the leading provider of solutions to family homelessness in the Greater Boston area, provided 1,100 children and parents a Thanksgiving dinner, funded through a grant from Gerstner Philanthropies. More than 70 staff and volunteers fanned out across the city to deliver nearly two tons of cooked Thanksgiving meals. They were joined by State Representative Rob Consalvo, many board members, and players and staff from the Boston Bruins hockey team. Gerstner Philanthropies is proud and happy to support families in need through meaningful programs such as these.Learn more about Treasure Coast Food BankLearn more about FamilyAid Boston
Learn more about UNH's accomplishments, their work with settlement houses throughout New York, as well as other helpful links/resources. They recently won the Eisner Prize for intergenerational work empowering older people and positioning them as community builders and change agents. They are working on showing the difference older adults can make in the lives of young people and their entire community. In addition, thanks to Gerstner philanthropies, UNH provided more than $1 million to settlement houses for their emergency cash assistance programs. They continue to support settlement houses as the reverberations of the COVID pandemic are felt. You can read several stories about the direct and meaningful impact this money has on families.Link to the online version
FamilyAid Boston’s proven success housing more than 1,700 children and parents during the pandemic has led to an expansion of emergency shelter and housing prevention programs with their leading partners, Boston Public Schools and Boston Children’s Hospital. Expansion of the two programs will allow more families to receive case management and housing services, ultimately supporting hundreds of children and parents throughout the school year. Since March 2020, FamilyAid Boston has housed more than 400 families through our Boston Public Schools partnership. Due to the success of the program, FamilyAid will coordinate housing placement and support services for an additional 1,100 BPS children and parents during the 2021 school year. FamilyAid’s partnership with local hospitals, which assists families with eviction prevention services and access to shelter, is also expanding.The expansion represents a $2.1-million expansion of a public and private partnership that brings together city, state, and federal agencies, and long-time FamilyAid funders Gerstner Philanthropies and Day 1 Families Fund. Gerstner Philanthropies has supported FamilyAid Boston since 2015, providing over $1.3 million in funding.Read more at familyaidboston.org