Westford Friends of East Boston Camps Receives $100K

Cummings Foundation donates money as part of charitable initiative.

Receiving the Cummings Foundation check. Courtesy
Receiving the Cummings Foundation check. Courtesy

Westford Friends of East Boston Camps has been selected as one of 100 local nonprofits to receive grants of $100,000 each through Cummings Foundation’s $100K for 100 program. The Westford based organization was chosen from more than 430 applicants during a very competitive review process.

The mission of the Westford Friends of East Boston Camps (EBC) is to support the conservation, preservation, maintenance, and improvement of East Boston Camps with the goal of providing camping, environmental and recreational programs for area residents including underprivileged and inner city youth. Established over seventy years ago and currently owned by the town of Westford, East Boston Camps includes 286 acres of pristine conservation land in the heart of the town. The property includes a pond, brooks, miles of walking trails and a historic camp including thirty buildings.

The current goal of Westford Friends of EBC is to build a bathhouse that will benefit everyone who comes to the camps and the grant from the Cummings Foundation will make this goal a reality. The old bathhouse was condemned and demolished last year, and the lack of bathroom facilities has been a major obstacle for current and new programs at the camps. 

"Building this bathhouse is the most important step that can be taken to improve the experience of visitors to the many events and programs that take place at the Camps. We thank the Cummings Foundation for making this possible!" - Denise Brunelle, President of the Friends Board of Directors.

Now in its third year, the $100K for 100 program awards $10 million in grants annually to nonprofits that are not only based in but also primarily serve Middlesex, Essex, and Suffolk counties. This year, the program is awarding 38 grants in Middlesex County, 25 in Essex County, and 37 in Suffolk County.

The community that will benefit from the greatest number of grants is Roxbury, which is home to nine nonprofits receiving awards. Six grants each will be distributed in Beverly, Lawrence, and Woburn.

Through this “place-based” grants program, Cummings Foundation aims to give back in the area where it owns commercial buildings, all of which are managed by its affiliate Cummings Properties. Founded in 1970 by Bill Cummings, the Woburn-based commercial real estate firm leases and manages more than 10 million square feet of commercial space, the majority of which exclusively benefits the Foundation. 

Joel Swets, Cummings Foundation’s executive director, said, “Cummings Foundation is very committed to the local communities where the staff and clients of the Cummings organization live and work. We are delighted to support very worthy nonprofits like Westford Friends of East Boston Camps that are working tirelessly for the benefit of the people they serve.”

This year’s very diverse group of grant recipients represents a wide variety of causes, including underserved populations, education, healthcare, hunger relief, and homelessness prevention. Most of the grants will be paid over two to five years.

Representatives from the recipient organizations will be invited to attend an exclusive Grantee Reception on June 2 at Trade Center 128 in Woburn to celebrate the $10 million infusion of funding into greater Boston’s nonprofit sector. The complete list of 100 grant award winners will be released that evening, and will be posted at CummingsFoundation.org

About Westford Friends of East Boston Camps

 Westford Friends of East Boston Camps was established in 2007, as a nonprofit organization with the mission of supporting the conservation, maintenance and improvement of the historic East Boston Camps property for environmental, outdoor recreational and educational purposes.  East Boston Camps includes three hundred acres of pristine land in the center of Westford, including Stony Brook, Keyes Brook and Burge's Pond, a sparkling clean pond that has seen minimal human impact.  At the center of the property is an historic seventy year old traditional camp ground with thirty buildings. Read more about Westford Friends of EBC.

About Cummings Foundation

Woburn-based Cummings Foundation, Inc. was established in 1986 by Joyce and Bill Cummings of Winchester. With assets exceeding $1 billion, it is one of the largest grant-making foundations in New England. The Foundation directly operates its own charitable subsidiaries, including two New Horizons retirement communities in Marlborough and Woburn. Its largest single commitment to date was $50 million to Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University in North Grafton. Additional information is available at CummingsFoundation.org

Full photo caption: Front: Eric Anderson, executive VP, Cummings Properties; Denise Brunelle, president, Westford Friends of East Boston Camps; Back: George Fletcher, Brian Alcorn, Diane Earle, Emily Edwards, Leslie Thomas, Beth Perkins, Angela Harkness, Marcia Stokes, Patti Mason, Peter Mahler.

Westford Voters for Elizabeth Warren May 16, 2014 at 10:02 PM
To Tony Shinella, Just an FYI - This article has incorrect data. If it came from the Westford Friend's of East Boston Camps website they need to update their data. The sentence below is no longer accurate after this year's Annual Town Meeting (ATM) on March 23, 2014. At the ATM, Westford Voters passed a by-law to rename the three hundred acres of land along with Stepinski Parcel to "Stony Brook Conservation Land." Only the site where the actual camps are located will continue to be named "East Boston Camps." The current sign at the Depot St. entrance will be moved to the camp area and a new sign with the new name (Stony Brook Conservation Land) of the entire land parcel will be put in its place at this entrance. The new sign should be erected in the next month or so. The Conservation Committee has already ordered it. Incorrect sentence in article: East Boston Camps includes three hundred acres of pristine land in the center of Westford, including Stony Brook, Keyes Brook and Burge's Pond, a sparkling clean pond that has seen minimal human impact. At the center of the property is an historic seventy year old traditional camp ground with thirty buildings.


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