SPRINGFIELD — Mayor Domenic Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced the awarding of 14 grants totaling $240,000 in a fourth round of the city of Springfield’s Prime the Pump grant program, assisting nonprofits that are responding to critical community needs related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The latest grants bring the total provided by the Prime the Pump program to more than $1.5 million.
The nonprofit grants typically range between $10,000 and $25,000. The focus of this round of funding was on small, community-based nonprofits that were addressing critical community needs in Springfield neighborhoods that have been disproportionately impacted by the virus, as well as its secondary impacts, both physical and economic. The scoring criteria also heavily weighted the diversity of the applicant’s governing board, as well as its employment of Springfield residents.
“The nonprofit community is a critical part of Springfield’s economy, and the services that these organizations and institutions provide are even more essential at this time of enormous need,” Sarno said. “I am pleased that Springfield could assist many of the organizations that have tirelessly assisted our city.”
The Prime the Pump Program is funded with Community Development Block Grant funding provided to the city by the CARES Act.
“At a time when the services of our local nonprofits are needed most, they are seeing their revenue generation completely disappear,” Sheehan said. “For many organizations, their doors remain open only by their collective grit, determination, and their belief in the importance their mission. The services these organizations provide to our community are essential, and their importance to our economy cannot be overstated.”
The latest grant recipients include Arise for Social Justice, Morris Child Care, and YMCA Springfield ($25,000); Rivera and Rivera, South End Community Center, Springfield 5A Bulldogs, Springfield Housing Associates, Springfield Vietnamese Cultural Assoc., and Stone Soul ($20,000); Chess Angels Promotions, Christina’s House, Greater New Life Christian Center, and Make It Springfield ($10,000); and MORE ($5,000).