Family Access of Newton Named Lead Agency for Newton COVID-19 Care Fund Distribution

April 7, 2020

NEWTON – Family Access of Newton, an established local non-profit organization with a track record of distributing emergency funds, has been designated by the leadership team of the Newton COVID-19 Care Fund to provide financial assistance to individuals and families financially burdened by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Newton COVID-19 Care Fund was established on March 20 by many Newton community leaders, including Mayor Ruthanne Fuller, in partnership with United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, to help families and individuals who have been financially impacted by this coronavirus pandemic.

“The effects of the pandemic on people in Newton are deep and immediate. With a lack of customers, every organization in our city is cutting costs, an imperative that is inevitably borne on the backs of hourly workers and those most vulnerable,” said Newton Mayor Ruthanne Fuller.

The Newton COVID-19 Care Fund is designed to provide financial assistance to Newton residents, people who work in Newton, and families with children receiving childcare services in Newton or enrolled in Newton Public Schools who have been financially burdened by the pandemic. City of Newton First Responders who incur new childcare expenses or other expenses as a result of the crisis will also be eligible. The funds will pay for rent, utilities, internet connectivity for families with school-aged children, childcare, medications and other basic needs.

“Family Access has been serving the families of Newton and beyond since 1907,” said Jon Firger, Executive Director at Family Access of Newton.  “We are proud that during this crisis we can be there to help our most vulnerable residents in their greatest need.”

A case manager from Family Access will accept and review grant requests on a rolling basis and will interview applicants to determine whether they qualify for assistance.

An application for financial assistance is available on United Way’s Newton Covid-19 Care Fund website. Non-profit organizations throughout Newton, such as Perpetual Benevolent Fund, Cousens Fund, Saint Vincent de Paul, Newton Food Pantry, Centre Street Food Pantry, and Riverside Community Care will encourage individuals who meet eligibility requirements to apply to Family Access for relief.  Payments will be sent to the vendor or provider of services; money will not be given to individuals directly.

“We have already raised over $300,000 from hundreds of Newton residents and businesses,” said Rob Gifford, Chair of the Fundraising Committee for the Newton COVID-19 Care Fund.  “We are very encouraged by the responsiveness and generosity of our community.  The need is great, so every additional dollar will make a difference.”

“We are pleased to be collaborating with Family ACCESS to provide emergency funding for those individuals who are financially impacted by COVID-19,” said Michael K. Durkin, Newton resident and President & CEO of United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley.  “United Way is proud to be a partner to the residents, nonprofits, city government and businesses in Newton to help raise and distribute assistance during this unprecedented and very challenging time.”

Click here for more information or to donate to the Newton COVID-19 Care Fund. All proceeds net of credit card fees will go directly to individuals seeking assistance.