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Initiatives

 

What is Valley Gives?

A 24-hour celebration of generosity where western Massachusetts donors come together to support their favorite nonprofits serving Hampshire, Hampden, and Springfield counties.

Double Our Impact Challenge

We did it! In Valley Gives' first year, more than 6,000 individuals donated over $1 million through Valley Give. In year wo, we set the ambitious goal of raising $2 million. With 350 participating nonprofits, more than 11,000 people came together to raise $2,012,089!

To see how all the 350 participating nonprofits did, visit www.valleygivesday.org

To learn more about Valley Gives, contact us at valleygives@communityfoundation.org

 

5 & Under Initiative: Access to Opporuntity for Children in Poverty (2006-2010)

The Community Foundation’s decision to create its special initiative, 5 & Under: Access to Opportunity for Children in Poverty, was the result of a three-year process that analyzed critical issues facing our region highlighted in the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission’s 2003 State of the People Report. After much discussion and debate it was determined that this special initiative would target children in poverty age five years old and younger.

The 10,000 children living in poverty age five years old and younger are one of the most vulnerable groups residing in the Pioneer Valley. The 2000 U.S. Census reported that 22.2% of the children age 5 and under in the Pioneer Valley were living in poverty which is almost twice the percentage statewide.

The impacts of child poverty are numerous and affect the children, their families, and society:

  • Disparities in school readiness
  • Less success in educational achievement
  • Higher rates of hospital admissions, disabilities, and deaths
  • Developmental problems involving health, social and emotional functioning, and cognitive skills

This special initiative was accomplished through grantmaking supporting high impact educational programs to enable impoverished families with children five years of age and younger to improve their lives by addressing the root causes of their poverty. The programs funded focused directly on the children, on their teachers or on their parents. Educational programs were targeted because education is a proven strategy for impacting the cycle of poverty.

The Community Foundation devoted approximately one third of its competitive grantmaking funds to the 5 & Under Initiative each year for four years (2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009).

Contact the Grants Staff If you have questions about the 5 & Under Initiative, please contact Nancy Reiche, Vice President for Programs at 413-732-2858 or grants@communityfoundation.org.