Lesley University is stepping up to support the Cambridge Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund with a $5,000 donation to provide grants to the city’s most vulnerable residents and small businesses.
“We are very pleased that Lesley can join the over 1,500 other donors, large and small, who have given generously to help our neighbors in need,” said Lesley President Janet L. Steinmayer. “Cambridge is such a well-resourced community, and yet even here the pandemic is taking an enormous economic toll, and the impact is being felt disproportionately by Black and brown residents. We are grateful to our mayor and city leaders for marshaling community resources to help the most vulnerable.”
The Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund has raised almost $5 million since the spring, but as the coronavirus pandemic has continued unabated for most of 2020, Cambridge residents and small businesses are experiencing unprecedented need. In making grants from the fund, the city is prioritizing applicants who demonstrate a loss of income as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Recipients may use funds for rent and utilities, or to pay for other household necessities. In addition, a half-million dollars from the fund was earmarked for grants to small businesses most severely affected by the pandemic. To date, almost $4.3 million has been distributed, but with the promise of a vaccine only now being realized, the need remains great, and the goal is to top $5 million by year’s end.
“The Mayor’s COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund has provided a lifeline for so many of our residents, businesses and organizations,” Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui said. “Lesley University’s financial contribution to the Mayor’s COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund will extend that assistance in our next round of fund distribution.”
“We are grateful for Lesley’s support to the Mayor’s COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund and their commitment to our residents and businesses in their time of need,” said the mayor.
As New England’s largest educator of teachers and mental health counselors, and with its premier College of Art and Design, Lesley University is uniquely focused on the human arts. Founded in 1909 in Cambridge, the university is committed to social justice and to making a tangible and immediate difference in its surrounding community.