Watertown Hosting a Drive-Thru Food Donation Event

The Watertown Community Foundation will be switching gears for its food drive, and will have a drive-thru event. The drop off will take place on Saturday, Oct. 17 from 12-4 p.m. at St. John’s Church at 80 Mt. Auburn St. 

People can simply drive into their circular driveway and volunteers will remove the donations from the car. Donations will be split between the Watertown Food Pantry and the Catholic Collaborative Food Pantry.

Watertown Community Foundation Hosting Online Trivia Night

The Watertown Community Foundation sent out a save the date for the annual Townwide Trivia Night. The Trivia Night be happening again this year, but it will be done virtually. It will take place on Friday, Nov. 20 beginning at 7 p.m. and participants will will join via Zoom from the comfort of their homes. Teams can join for $50, and there are a maximum of six people per team.

Watertown Community Foundation Celebrates Reaching $100K in Resiliency Fund

The Watertown Community Foundation has given out these lawn signs to people who have donated to help others in town during COVID-19. The Watertown Community Foundation announced it has raised more than $100,000 for the Community Resilience Fund, which was created in to help community members during the COVID-19 pandemic and the shutdown. Be sure to check out the video, which provides a nice tour of Town and features many familiar faces. The Watertown Community Foundation sent out the following announcement:

In March of 2020 the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown our town but it did not shutdown the Watertown Community Foundation (WCF) or our community spirit. WCF worked quickly to establish the Watertown Resilience Fund with an initial amount of $40,000 from the foundation and personal contributions of board members. The Community Resilience Fund has grown to over $110,000 thanks to this amazing community. These funds have been used to help our neighbors who have faced significant financial challenges due to the pandemic and supported them with everything from grocery gift cards to emergency rental assistance. 

But, we haven’t stopped there. In a time when everyone was feeling like they needed a little love but couldn’t be near so many of their loved ones, we started the “We  Watertown” campaign. So many people in our community LOVE Watertown and we want to spread the LOVE! Our yard signs are popping up all over town. You can request one by emailing: info@watertownfoundation.org. 

We hope you enjoy this video of some of our friends around town sharing their love of our community. 

https://spark.adobe.com/video/FmvStT0SZrUXi 

We are always looking for ways to support and partner with organizations and businesses in town. BLING Boutique in Watertown Square is our latest partner, selling beautiful “We  Watertown” stemless glasses and wish bracelets. A portion of the proceeds come directly back to the Watertown Community Foundation. Cheers to loving our wonderful town! 

Give where you live. Donate, volunteer, support a local business or just simply give love.

Watertown Residents Can Apply for Rental Assistance

Watertown residents struggling to cover their rent due to the COVID-19 outbreak can apply for rental assistance of up to $1,000. The Watertown Community Foundation has teamed with MetroWest Collaborative Development and Wayside Youth & Family Network to provide rental assistance for families who are behind (or arrear) in rent. The assistance will be awarded on a first-come-first-serve basis. The Watertown Community Foundation received funds from the Massachusetts COVID-19 Relief Fund, said Executive Director Jan Singer. “Our grants from MA COVID-19 Relief Fund have gone directly to MetroWest Collaborative Development, who is administering the program,” Singer said.

Scholarships Available for Summer Recreation Programs from Community Foundation

The following information was provided by the Watertown Community Foundation:

The Watertown Community Foundation’s (WCF) Community Resilience Fund, created to respond to the impacts of the COVID-19 emergency and similar crises, has announced a $10,000 grant to the Watertown Recreation Department. The fund is for scholarships for families in need who want to participate in the summer 2020 program. 

“WCF is committed to ensuring every Watertown child that wants one has a camp experience this summer,” said WCF co-president Darshna Varia. “As there were no planned camps for kids in Watertown for this summer, the foundation discussed trying to help the town find a way to give some relief to families and get some outdoor activity for children. With the RecreationDepartment’s announcement of the Parks Adventure Program, we found a perfect partnership.”

“It’s been a long tough spring and now there may be a little relief for families during the summer mornings,” added Peter Centola, Director of Watertown Recreation. Any family in need of financial assistance can contact PCentola@watertown-ma.gov.

Online registration here.

Signs of Generosity Pop Up Around Watertown; Community Foundation Gives Rental, Food Assistance

The Watertown Community Foundation has given out these lawn signs to people who have donated to help others in town during COVID-19. The Watertown Community Foundation wanted to thank those who have donated to help out their neighbors during the difficult times cause by the COVID-19 pandemic, and have handed out lawn signs proclaiming “We ♥ Watertown.” WCF Executive Director Jan Singer said that residents have been very generous donating to the Foundation and the Community Resilience Fund, which was created in March to assist people impacted by the Coronavirus. “Hundreds of people in Watertown have contributed and we have given out thousands of dollars,” Singer said. “We continue to give emergency rental assistance and to both food pantries.

Mutual Aid Program Has Linked Dozens in Watertown to Help Each Other During COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown began, a new program paired up people who needed help doing things like going to the grocery stores or getting masks with Town residents who could help them. So far, the Mutual Aid Network in Watertown has had 50 people reach out for assistance and nearly double that number offer to help, with 65 of those being matched with someone, said Program Coordinator Sophia Suarez-Friedman. The program is run by the Wayside Youth & Family Support Network and is funded by a grant from the Watertown Community Foundation. Recently, the Foundation provided enough money for Mutual Aid to run through the end of the year. 

Positive Feedback

Suarez-Friedman has collected “success stories” from some of the people who have received assistance through Mutual Aid or volunteered to help out. A person who feared going to get groceries when the cases of COVID-19 were surging was able to get help going grocery shopping.

Watertown Groups Providing Ways to Get Help From & Give Assistance to Neighbors (Including Face Masks)

The recently created Mutual Aid Network is a way for Watertown residents to help their neighbors, and for people in town to get assistance during the COVID-19 outbreak, including food, financial assistance and even face masks. The combined effort by the Watertown Community Foundation and the Wayside Youth & Family Support Network kicked off last week, and has already garnered a team of volunteers. Jan Singer, executive director of the Watertown Community Foundation said that people can request assistance or volunteer to provide help through this Mutual Aid form. The idea of Mutual Aid is to connect people, Singer said. Normally the groups would create a central drop-off and pick-up site, but that is not possible with places like the Watertown Library and Town Hall closed due to orders by the Governor.