United Way Awarded $5M Grant to Support Community Efforts

United Way of Central Massachusetts (UWCM), a NEC member located in Worcester, received a $5million grant from MacKenzie Scott, the former wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, known for her philanthropic initiatives and investment in charity. The donation came at a critical time for United Way, as demand for social services was exacerbated due to the social and economic repercussions of the current global pandemic.

Scott’s donation supports United Way in their community-based work in health, financial stability, and education. To date, the $5 million has been budgeted to finance summer programs for children, vaccination campaigns, support for Afghan refugees, community kitchens, literacy programs, and other necessary social and community services. United Way is additionally seeking community input for future spending of the gift with particular focuses on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), early education, and programs to counter poverty.

“We are overwhelmed and humbled by MacKenzie Scott’s generosity,” said UWCM President and CEO Tim Garvin. “COVID-19 remains a threat to Central Massachusetts as we continue our work to mitigate the health and economic impact of the pandemic, this transformational donation will ensure that this work continues through the recovery phase and help us to rebuild Worcester and come back even stronger.”

The New England Council congratulates United Way of Central Massachusetts and Mackenzie Scott for their commitment to community resilience and services, particularly during the challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more in the Worcester Business Journal and the UWCM press release.

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