City of Cambridge Announces Funding for Local Mask Partnership

Staff and friends of Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House Distribute Masks. Photo by David Rabkin

The City of Cambridge has teamed up with the Cambridge Mask Alliance, a coalition of 12 local nonprofits led by Cambridge Volunteer Clearinghouse (CVC), to make face masks accessible to those most in need. The City of Cambridge recently awarded a grant of $24,000 to CVC for its Mask Cambridge initiative. This grant builds on two previous grants to CVC, and brings the total support from the City of Cambridge and the Cambridge Public Health Department to $62,500 since June.

“We know that wearing masks is one of the most effective and simple strategies to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” said Cambridge City Manager Louis A. DePasquale. “I am pleased that we can support the Cambridge Mask Alliance to ensure that any Cambridge resident, especially our most vulnerable, has access to quality reusable face masks.”

The Cambridge Mask Alliance sources and supplies masks for approximately 40 nonprofit agencies, including Cambridge Housing Authority, for distribution to the people they serve and is part of the City of Cambridge's coordinated response to COVID-19.

“I am proud the City is partnering with the Cambridge Mask Alliance as a strategy in keeping our most vulnerable residents safe, especially as we head into cold and flu season,” said Cambridge Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui. “I’m also very grateful to the volunteers and organizations within the Alliance that are making this possible for our city and its residents.”

“COVID-19 has not affected all Cambridge residents equally, and yet we are all in this together," said Laurie Rothstein, Executive Director of the Cambridge Volunteer Clearinghouse. "With the support of the City of Cambridge, the Cambridge Public Health Department, Google Cambridge, individual donors, and dozens of volunteers, we have already supplied more than 12,000 durable, effective, and breathable masks -- all made in MA -- since the spring, and we are expecting 15,000 more in the coming three weeks. The latest City support puts us on track to provide household supplies of masks to some 1,500 families of school-aged children before on-site classes begin. Looking ahead to the double impact of COVID-19 and flu season, our coalition now welcomes and needs private supporters -- business sponsors and individuals -- to help quickly secure the balance of masks. We also need more volunteers to prep, pack, and deliver them.”

Members of the Cambridge Mask Alliance include: Cambridge Community Center, Cambridge Community Center for the Arts, Cambridge Nonprofit Coalition, Cambridge Volunteer Clearinghouse, Community Action Agency of Somerville, DeNovo Center for Justice and Healing, East End House, Just-A-Start, Living Well Network, Many Helping Hands/365, Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House, and YWCA Cambridge.

"I wish to thank the City and all of the organizations that are participating in this effort. It has been a pleasure to work with them,” said Cambridge City Councillor Marc C. McGovern.

Learn more about the Mask Cambridge initiative at cambridgevolunteers.org/support.

Nonprofit organizations that need face masks to distribute to their clients can submit a request at https://bit.ly/2XL3OJz.

If you or a member of your household needs cloth masks, ask a local nonprofit to contact Cambridge Volunteer Clearinghouse at cvc@cambridgevolunteers.org.


Photo: Staff and friends of Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House want the Mask Cambridge initiative to succeed and plan to do their part to ensure those residents who are still in need of cloth masks can get them. Learn more at www.cambridgevolunteers.org/support. Photo by David Rabkin.

Page was posted on 9/22/2020 5:36 PM
Page was last modified on 9/22/2020 5:37 PM
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