WALTHAM — The Mass. Medical Society (MMS) and Alliance Charitable Foundation announced that it has awarded grants to three Western Mass. agencies to support health care services for the uninsured and underinsured.
Area agencies receiving grants include:
Volunteers in Medicine Berkshires, Great Barrington, $20,000. The grant will support a family nurse practitioner to provide medical evaluation, treatments, and preventive health education to the uninsured and underinsured residents of Southern Berkshire County. Opened in 2004, VIM is a free clinic offering medical, dental, mental health, and optometry services to income-qualified residents throughout the Berkshire region. This is the sixth consecutive annual grant to VIM from the foundation.
Ecu Health Care, Inc., North Adams, $15,000. The award will support the agency’s overall mission to help the uninsured and underinsured gain access to health care and provide health-insurance outreach and enrollment to people in eight communities in Northern Berkshire County.
Holyoke Health Center, Holyoke, $15,000. The contribution will assist the Healthy Weight for Women project, promoting educational and other activities for healthy weight and positive lifestyles. Begun in 1970, HHC is a community health center providing medical and dental care to the uninsured and underinsured in Holyoke. The agency serves about 16,000 people each year, and has a second facility in Chicopee.
The contributions were three of 10 made by the foundation in its latest round of grant making for 2009. Also receiving grants were the following:
MetroWest Free Medical Program, Sudbury, $25,000, to expand capacity and services to meet the increasing needs of the uninsured and underinsured in MetroWest communities;
Friends of Boston’s Homeless, Boston, $20,000, to support services for long-term homeless individuals;
Father Bills & MainSpring, Quincy, $10,000, to extend the hours of operation at the MainSpring clinic in Brockton to provide routine medical care to homeless men and women;
Open Door Free Medical Program, Hudson, $10,000, to support the Chronic Disease Project;
Project Bread, Boston, $10,000, to support the Boston Healthy Food Partnership, a project targeting 2,000 low-income students in three Boston public schools;
Health Awareness Services of Central Mass., Worcester, $8,000, for family-planning health care, screening and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, HIV counseling and testing, health education, and HIV case-management services in Marlborough and surrounding communities; and
The Sharewood Project, Boston, $7,500, to expand primary health care services to the underserved offered by volunteer medical students at the Malden Clinic. Sharewood is a free health care organization operated by medical students from the Tufts University School of Medicine.
Established in 2000, the foundation is a supporting organization of the MMS, the statewide association of physicians, and the MMS Alliance, the organization of physicians’ spouses committed to promoting good health among the citizens of Massachusetts and to advancing the health and well-being of the medical family. The foundation’s mission is to support the charitable and educational activities of the society and alliance and address issues affecting the health, benefit, and welfare of the community.
The 10 awards bring the total amount of grants made by the foundation to $1,714,400 since its inception in 2000. Among the 65 programs supported are those addressing homelessness, sexual abuse and domestic violence, hunger, and health care for the uninsured and underinsured.