In longstanding GMA tradition, a group of three volunteers sifts through employee nominations, and selects the recipients of our year-end corporate giving. There is a certain amount of pride in seeing a nominee win, so we each become cheerleaders for our favorite nonprofit organizations.
This year, our committee of volunteers asked for nominations of organizations at work in three issue areas: public health and community outreach; mental health; refugee resettlement and relief. They established guidelines, seeking experienced Boston-area organizations that: employ an equity lens in their work, have leadership representative of the population served, and had responded robustly to the COVID crisis.
Through this year-end ritual, we reaffirm both the impact of smaller, grassroots nonprofits and the joy that comes of giving together. We celebrate a year of connection through difficult times, united by a shared philanthropic spirit. We spotlight surefooted organizations that inspire us with their determination and commitment to helping people find their strengths.
Our corporate contributions committee selected:
- North American Indian Center of Boston
- La Alianza Hispana
- Immigrant Family Services Institute, Inc.
- Roxbury Presbyterian Church Social Impact Center
What was the committee thinking?
Sarah: When we first came together to talk about the vision for this year’s corporate contributions, we realized that we each had something on our mind relating to the effects of the pandemic. Those concerns or interests became our three categories for staff nominations: public health and community outreach; mental health; refugee resettlement and relief.
Amy: The pandemic is still very much ongoing, and with the roll out of booster shots, the original vaccine to those who have not gotten it yet, and other COVID-related care, public health and community outreach is extremely important, especially for communities that typically fall through the cracks.
Anna: Mental health is getting much more notice during this time of COVID. Vulnerable populations are experiencing a great deal of trauma and will continue to feel the effects the pandemic has had on their mental health for a long time. Mental health has often been a forgotten field in the healthcare industry, and we wanted to support and help build on the current momentum.
Sarah: At a foundation board meeting in October, I was very moved by our guest speakers from the International Institute of New England and the Immigrant Family Services Institute. With the pandemic still raging, government ambivalence, and just the general consequences of resettling even if there was no pandemic, I felt strongly about including refugee resettlement and relief as a category for our contributions this year.
Choosing among so many sharp organizations was difficult!