Operation Bootstrap awarded $100,000

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From Operation Bootstrap –

Operation Bootstrap 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 Lynn-based organization was chosen from more than 350 applicants during a very competitive review process.

Today, there are more than 25,000 lower-skilled adults in the greater Lynn area who lack the English, and basic reading, writing and math skills needed to participate in technical or occupational training – the kinds of skills and credentials required by the vast majority of jobs in the new economy. Median income in Lynn is 40% below the state median income; and Lynn has the fifth highest poverty level in Massachusetts. Grant money received from the Cummings Foundation will support Bootstrap’s efforts to address this gap in education and skills.

“Thousands of adults in Lynn do not have the skills they need to be able to support themselves and their families. Thousands of children are being raised in poverty or at the margins. Operation Bootstrap is actively engaged in efforts to develop the human capital this population represents,” says Executive Director, Edward Tirrell. “Turning these statistics around means a more prosperous and vibrant North Shore community for all of us. Support from local funders like The Cummings Foundation makes this work possible.”

Representing Operation Bootstrap, Edward Tirrell, and Paula Murphy-Roux, Board Chair and joined approximately 300 other guests at a June 4 reception at TradeCenter 128 in Woburn to celebrate the $10 million infusion into Greater Boston’s nonprofit sector. With the conclusion of this grant cycle, Cummings Foundation reached a major milestone – it has now awarded more than $100 million in grants to local nonprofits alone.

The $100K for 100 program supports nonprofits that are not only based in but also primarily serve Middlesex, Essex, and Suffolk counties. This year, the program benefited 41 different communities within the Commonwealth.

Through this place-based initiative, Cummings Foundation aims to give back in the area where it owns commercial buildings, all of which are managed, at no cost to the Foundation, by its affiliate Cummings Properties. Founded in 1970 by Bill Cummings of Winchester, the Woburn-based commercial real estate firm leases and manages more than 10 million square feet of space, the majority of which exclusively benefits the Foundation.

“The Foundation is incredibly grateful to nonprofits like Operation Bootstrap that are working diligently for the benefit of the communities where the staff and clients of the Cummings organization live and work,” said Joel Swets, Cummings Foundation’s executive director.

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

The complete list of 100 grant winners is available at www.CummingsFoundation.org.

About Operation Bootstrap

Established in 1979, Operation Bootstrap is now the largest Adult Education center on the North Shore, serving over 400 students from North Shore communities each year with Adult Basic Education classes, English classes and work and career readiness services. Bootstrap believes education empowers individuals to make the life changes necessary to allow them to move towards economic independence. More information at www.operationbootstrap.org.

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