2020

COVID-19: Bank of America donates to FBMS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, Contact: Patrick Ronan, (508) 649-4589, pronan@helpfbms.org

Bank of America assists Father Bill’s & MainSpring during COVID-19 crisis
Efforts will boost outreach and services to Southern MA’s most vulnerable individuals

BROCKTON, Mass., April 13, 2020 —  Bank of America is joining with Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) in order to support individuals and families experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 crisis.

A $100,000 grant from the bank will assist FBMS as it continues to face steep operational challenges while providing emergency shelter and hot meals to more than 200 individuals per night during the pandemic. In addition, the non-profit organization is providing emergency shelter to more than 130 families per night and is operating more than 550 permanent supportive housing units for formerly homeless individuals, families, and veterans on the South Shore and across Southern Massachusetts.

In response to the crisis, FBMS has worked with local partners to open up temporary shelters in Quincy and Brockton, helping provide additional space to help protect the health and safety of guests and staff. In addition, the agency is hiring new staff to meet an increased need for services; is purchasing food for shelter guests to make up for a temporary loss in its volunteer workforce; and is taking the steps needed to limit the spread of COVID-19, including investments in extra handwashing stations and an aggressive cleaning of its facilities.

“We are grateful to Bank of America for providing this incredibly generous gift at a critical time for our agency,” said FBMS President & CEO John Yazwinski. “This crisis has created significant additional costs as we work around the clock to protect our guests, many of whom are elderly or have underlying health conditions. This grant from Bank America will assist us tremendously as we continue to provide care to our most vulnerable neighbors.”

The grant is part of Bank of America’s commitment, announced last month, to distribute $100 million to local communities around the world facing unprecedented challenges.

“At Bank of America, we are working every day to provide resources that support the needs of our communities. The Coronavirus pandemic is forcing nonprofit groups like Father Bill’s & MainSpring to do more for a vulnerable population that depends on their services. We will continue supporting the rising need for services to support our community,” said Miceal Chamberlain, Massachusetts president of Bank of America.

Earlier this month, FBMS partnered with the South Shore YMCA and the City of Quincy to open up a temporary secondary shelter at the Quincy YMCA branch. And in Brockton FBMS has partnered with the state and City of Brockton to open four emergency tents outside of MainSpring House. These initiatives have allowed FBMS to depopulate its shelters, providing the space needed for guests and staff to practice social distancing, limiting their potential exposure to COVID-19.

FBMS is partnering with Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, Manet Community Health Center, and Brockton Neighborhood Health Center to provide basic health care services and COVID-19 testing to guests and staff.

To learn more about FBMS’ response to the coronavirus crisis and to learn how the public can help, visit helpfbms.org/coronavirus.

About Father Bill’s & MainSpring
Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) is the leading provider of services to prevent and end homelessness in Southern Massachusetts. The agency, founded in the early 1980s by a group of interfaith and community leaders, helps nearly 6,000 people annually who find themselves homeless, or at risk of homelessness, achieve more self-sufficiency through a range of services including homelessness prevention, emergency shelter, employment programs, and permanent supportive housing, FBMS, a proud partner of the United Way of Greater Plymouth County and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit agency with administrative offices in Quincy and Brockton and program offices across the South Shore. For more information, visit www.helpfbms.org.

About Bank of America
At Bank of America, we’re guided by a common purpose to help make financial lives better, through the power of every connection. We’re delivering on this through responsible growth with a focus on our environmental, social and governance (ESG) leadership. ESG is embedded across our eight lines of business and reflects how we help fuel the global economy, build trust and credibility, and represent a company that people want to work for, invest in and do business with. It’s demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our clients, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocacy groups, such as community, consumer and environmental organizations, to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact. Learn more at about.bankofamerica.com, and connect with us on Twitter (@BofA_News).

Bank of America has delivered more than $2 billion in philanthropic investments since 2009, with approximately $250 million in 2019 alone. In April 2019, the company announced a $5 billion Bank of America Community Homeownership Commitment™ to benefit low- and moderate-income homebuyers and communities across the U.S. over the next five years. Also in 2019, Bank of America Community Development Banking provided a record $4.88 billion in loans, tax credit equity investments and other real estate development solutions. Between 2005 and 2019, Bank of America financed 202,800 affordable housing units. To meet the unique needs of its 12 million small business owners, the company provides advice, solutions and dedicated support. Bank of America maintained its position as the nation’s top small business lender at the end of 2019, with $38.9 billion in total outstanding small business loan balances (defined as business loans in original amounts of $1 million and under), up 7% year over year.

For more Bank of America news, including dividend announcements and other important information, visit the Bank of America newsroom and register for news email alerts.

www.bankofamerica.com

COVID-19: FBMS sets up heated tents in Brockton

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, Contact: Patrick Ronan, (508) 649-4589, pronan@helpfbms.org

State, city, and local partners team up to provide emergency relief to individuals experiencing homelessness in Brockton
Heated tents will provide extra space, support to guests of MainSpring House

[BROCKTON, Mass., March 31, 2020] The administrations of Gov. Charlie Baker and Brockton Mayor Robert F. Sullivan are partnering with local non-profits Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) and Brockton Neighborhood Health Center (BNHC) to provide emergency relief to individuals experiencing homelessness in Brockton during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Officials have approved a plan to erect multiple emergency tents next to the MainSpring House, an emergency shelter operated by FBMS at 54 North Main Street in Brockton. The heated tents, to be erected within the coming week, will hold emergency cots and additional amenities for approximately 60 guests who are currently staying at MainSpring House.

The tents will be erected on the city-owned Perkins Park and outside of Jeff’s Place, the housing property operated by FBMS at 26 Spring Street. The tents will allow FBMS to depopulate MainSpring House, which in recent weeks has been providing shelter to approximately 125 guests per night.

By opening up these tents, guests and staff at MainSpring House will be able to practice the social distancing guidelines recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In addition, MainSpring House and its healthcare partner, Brockton Neighborhood Health Center, which operates a clinic within the shelter, will have the space needed to create potential quarantine areas to better protect guests and staff from exposure to COVID-19.

“We want to thank Mayor Robert Sullivan, the City of Brockton, the administration of Governor Charlie Baker, including the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, and Brockton Neighborhood Health Center for coming together to provide critical support to our most vulnerable neighbors during this crisis,” said FBMS President & CEO John Yazwinski. “Our guests are among the most vulnerable to the coronavirus, including elders and individuals with underlying health issues. By opening these tents, we’re able to depopulate our shelter and we’re in a much better position to deliver the support and care our guests need during these unprecedented times.”

“Brockton Neighborhood Health Center is pleased to be part of this collaboration to protect the vulnerable homeless individuals in Brockton,” said Brockton Neighborhood Health Center CEO Sue Joss. “The close quarters in the MainSpring facility make it nearly impossible to maintain the social distancing necessary to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The tents will allow guests at MainSpring to spread out and keep their distance from each other. BNHC is supporting this effort by testing MainSpring staff and guests for the virus and providing medical support and guidance to this effort.”

“My role as Mayor is to protect all residents of the City. To that end, I have been in close contact with John Yazwinski and Sue Joss since this crisis started to make a plan for some of Brockton’s most vulnerable residents – our homeless population,” said Mayor Robert F. Sullivan. “I welcome the State’s assistance and look forward to a solution-based approach that provides a healthy environment to help our residents.”

FBMS is adding staff around the clock to help provide support to the expanded shelter operations. Between the MainSpring House and the tented areas, a total of 7 staff will work the 4 p.m. to midnight shift, 6 staff will work the midnight to 8 a.m. shift, and 6 staff will work the 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. shift.

Staff along with a police detail will ensure security of the tented areas. In addition, there will be surveillance cameras pointed toward the park for additional visual supervision.

Several weeks ago, FBMS began implementing precautionary measures at MainSpring House to better protect guests and staff, including a more thorough screening process for guests entering the shelter. The screening, conducted by staff and medical personnel, helps identify guests who are exhibiting symptoms similar to those of COVID-19.

In addition, FBMS purchased additional handwashing stations and invested in cleaning services to help limit exposure to COVID-19. For more information, visit helpfbms.org/coronavirus.

About Father Bill’s & MainSpring
Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) is the leading provider of services to prevent and end homelessness in Southern Massachusetts. The agency, founded in the early 1980s by a group of interfaith and community leaders, helps nearly 6,000 people annually who find themselves homeless, or at risk of homelessness, achieve more self-sufficiency through a range of services including homelessness prevention, emergency shelter, employment programs, and permanent supportive housing, FBMS, a proud partner of the United Way of Greater Plymouth County and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit agency with administrative offices in Quincy and Brockton and program offices across the South Shore. For more information, visit www.helpfbms.org.

About Brockton Neighborhood Health Center
Brockton Neighborhood Health Center is a multicultural organization that collaborates with community agencies and residents to provide high-quality, comprehensive health care that is responsive to community health needs and is linguistically, culturally and financially accessible. We are committed to health promotion and disease prevention, and serve more than 35,000 individual patients each year in our three downtown clinics.

COVID-19: Temporary shelter set up at Quincy YMCA

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, Contacts: Patrick Ronan, Community Relations & Marketing Manager, Father Bill’s & MainSpring, 508-649-4589, pronan@helpfbms.org; Lauren Dell’Olio, Vice President of Communications, South Shore YMCA, 617-680-7659, ldellolio@ssymca.org.


Quincy YMCA to provide extra space, support to most vulnerable during COVID-19 crisis
City of Quincy, South Shore YMCA, and Father Bill’s & MainSpring collaborate to provide emergency shelter to elders and at-risk individuals experiencing homelessness

[QUINCY, Mass., March 31, 2020] South Shore YMCA, the City of Quincy and Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) have partnered to create a temporary emergency shelter that will support some of the area’s most vulnerable individuals during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

Starting on Wednesday, April 1, the South Shore YMCA Quincy Branch on Coddington Street will open up its gymnasium to approximately 50 individuals currently staying at Father Bill’s Place, the emergency shelter operated by FBMS at 38 Broad Street. The temporary shelter will provide beds, meals, and supportive services to elders and individuals with underlying health conditions, who are among the most vulnerable to the coronavirus.

The City of Quincy’s Office of Emergency Management, at the direction of Mayor Thomas Koch, has provided the cots and logistical support needed to operate an emergency shelter. The City, South Shore YMCA and FBMS are working together to provide support staff and to ensure site security.

By opening up a secondary shelter, guests and staff at Father Bill’s Place will be able to practice the social distancing guidelines recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In addition, working with the Y, Father Bill’s Place will have the relief necessary to create potential quarantine areas in other locations within Quincy, which would better protect guests and staff from exposure to COVID-19.

In recent weeks, Father Bill’s Place has been providing shelter to more than 120 individuals per night.

“We’re grateful to Paul Gorman, the team at the South Shore YMCA, Mayor Thomas Koch, and the City of Quincy for stepping up and providing the leadership and resources needed to support our neighbors in need during these unprecedented times,” said FBMS President & CEO John Yazwinski. “Based on our communications with shelter providers on the West Coast, including those most impacted by the coronavirus in Washington state, we’ve determined that the best course of action right now is to depopulate our shelters, creating more physical space for individuals who don’t have their own home. This temporary shelter in Quincy goes a long way in protecting our most vulnerable guests during this crisis.”

“We made one phone call to South Shore YMCA President Paul Gorman to explore this idea, and his response was immediate: ‘What do you need and when do you need it?’” said Quincy Mayor Tom Koch. “I am extraordinarily grateful for the SSYMCA’s partnership on this important effort to protect some of the most vulnerable members of our community; the hard, fast work of the team at Father Bill’s to make it happen; and the leadership of Joe Finn and the Massachusetts Shelter and Housing Alliance for bringing all the parties together.”

“The YMCA has been a part of the Quincy community for more than 125 years,” said South Shore YMCA President & CEO Paul Gorman. “We have always had a strong relationship with the City and the Mayor’s office and are happy to support the community in any way we can.  We pour our hearts into our social services work, which is at the core of our mission. We are proud and honored to work alongside the City and Father Bill’s Place in this time of need.”

FBMS has been working with Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, which operates a health care clinic inside Father Bill’s Place, and Manet Community Health Center in order to implement health and safety measures that better protect guests and staff during this pandemic.

Several weeks ago, FBMS began implementing precautionary measures at Father Bill’s Place to better protect guests and staff, including a more thorough screening process for guests entering the shelter. The screening, conducted by staff and medical personnel, helps identify guests who are exhibiting symptoms similar to those of COVID-19. Guests displaying symptoms are directed to a health care provider for further screening.

All guests staying at the South Shore YMCA Quincy will have undergone the screening process at Father Bill’s Place and displayed no COVID-19 symptoms.

In addition, FBMS purchased additional handwashing stations and invested in cleaning services to help limit exposure to COVID-19. For more information, visit helpfbms.org/coronavirus.

About Father Bill’s & MainSpring
Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) is the leading provider of services to prevent and end homelessness in Southern Massachusetts. The agency, founded in the early 1980s by a group of interfaith and community leaders, helps nearly 6,000 people annually who find themselves homeless, or at risk of homelessness, achieve more self-sufficiency through a range of services including homelessness prevention, emergency shelter, employment programs, and permanent supportive housing, FBMS, a proud partner of the United Way of Greater Plymouth County and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit agency with administrative offices in Quincy and Brockton and program offices across the South Shore. For more information, visit www.helpfbms.org.

About the South Shore YMCA
The South Shore YMCA is a leading charitable organization dedicated to strengthening community. Since 1892, the Y has served communities across the South Shore of Massachusetts and beyond, engaging over 60,000 adults, children, families and seniors each day through membership, critical social services, and programs that support a healthy spirit, mind and body. The Y empowers everyone by ensuring access to resources, relationships and opportunities for all to learn, grow and thrive. By bringing together people from all backgrounds, the Y’s goal is to improve overall health and well-being, ignite youth empowerment and demonstrate the importance of connections throughout our community. To learn more about the South Shore YMCA and our causes, visit ssymca.org. The Better You Belongs Here.

COVID-19: FBMS in need of support during pandemic

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, Contact: Patrick Ronan, (508) 649-4589, pronan@helpfbms.org

Urgent need for donations during COVID-19 crisis
Father Bill’s & MainSpring continues to provide services that support our most vulnerable

[BROCKTON, Mass., March 24, 2020] Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS), a regional provider of emergency shelter and housing, is asking the public for support during the COVID-19 pandemic, as the non-profit agency continues to provide essential services to our most vulnerable neighbors in Southern Massachusetts.

As a result of the COVID-19 crisis, FBMS is anticipating an operational shortfall of approximately $125,000 per month that is needed to continue providing essential services while also protecting guests and staff from exposure to the virus. Every night, the agency provides emergency shelter to approximately 260 individuals and more than 130 families who are experiencing homelessness. In addition, FBMS continues to operate more than 550 permanent supportive housing units for formerly homeless individuals, families, and veterans.

Cash donations provide FBMS with the most flexibility in responding to the crisis. Donations will allow FBMS to purchase meals for guests, purchase additional handwashing stations and cleaning supplies, and compensate shelter staff for working during the crisis.

To make an online donation, visit helpfbms.org/donate. Checks can be sent to: Father Bill’s & MainSpring, Attn: Development Office, 430 Belmont Street, Brockton, MA 02301.

“We can’t press pause on homelessness during this crisis,” FBMS President & CEO John Yazwinski said. “At our shelters in Quincy and Brockton we work with immunodeficient populations, including elders and guests with chronic illnesses, who are among the most vulnerable to COVID-19. We must pull together as a community to provide our critical services of food and shelter, and we simply can’t do it without help from our supporters.”

In addition to cash donations, FBMS is in need of:

  • Bagged lunches and prepared meals: Bagged lunches and prepared meals can be delivered on weekdays between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. at Father Bill’s Place, 38 Broad Street, Quincy (617-770-3314), and MainSpring House at 54 North Main Street, Brockton (508-587-5441). These deliveries, which provide essential services, are permitted during a shelter-in-place order. IMPORTANT: Please call shelter upon your arrival and staff will meet you at your vehicle to accept donation. For more info, visit tinyurl.com/LunchesFBMS.
  • Disinfectant & Cleaning Supplies: Our shelters are in need of: hand sanitizer, gloves, masks, hand soap, Clorox wipes, Lysol spray, or any type of disinfecting solution. To make a donation, email info@helpfbms.org or call 508-649-4589.

About Father Bill’s & MainSpring
Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) is the leading provider of services to prevent and end homelessness in Southern Massachusetts. The agency, founded in the early 1980s by a group of interfaith and community leaders, helps nearly 6,000 people annually who find themselves homeless, or at risk of homelessness, achieve more self-sufficiency through a range of services including homelessness prevention, emergency shelter, employment programs, and permanent supportive housing, FBMS, a proud partner of the United Way of Greater Plymouth County and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit agency with administrative offices in Quincy and Brockton and program offices across the South Shore. For more information, visit www.helpfbms.org.

United Way brings warmth to FBMS families

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, Contact: Patrick Ronan, (508) 427-6448 x2289, pronan@helpfbms.org


United Way brings warmth to FBMS families
United Way of Greater Plymouth County funds purchase of winter coats for local children in need

[BROCKTON, Mass., March 3, 2020] More than 60 children served by Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) received brand-new winter coats this season, thanks to the United Way of Greater Plymouth County’s 5th Annual “United Way Warmer Winters Fund.” Since 2015, this initiative has helped over 1,000 children in Greater Plymouth County keep warm during the cold winter months.

The fund was supported this year by generous donations from Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital Plymouth, Bridgewater Savings Bank, Good Samaritan Medical Center, Macy’s, National Grid and Target. United Way was able to allocate $11,850 to help low income children in Greater Plymouth County, including $2,151 donated to FBMS.

FBMS utilized the grant funding to purchase winter coats for children served by the agency. FBMS, a regional provider of services to prevent and end homelessness in Southern Massachusetts, provides emergency shelter to more than 260 families per year, including more than 460 children.

“Many families in our region are struggling to keep up with the high cost of living, making it very difficult for parents to afford seasonal items, like coats for their kids,” FBMS President & CEO John Yazwinski said. “We’re very grateful to the United Way of Greater Plymouth County and its corporate partners for bringing warmth to our neighbors in need this winter.”

Other recipients of the funds to purchase coats were The Family Center at Community Connections of Brockton, The Arc of Greater Plymouth, Brockton Area Arc, Brockton Day Nursery, Brockton Visiting Nurse Association, Family & Community Resources, and Health Imperatives.

“We are once again overjoyed to see the community unite to support our ‘Warmer Winters’ initiative,” said United Way President & CEO Dennis Carman.

About Father Bill’s & MainSpring
Father Bill’s & MainSpring (FBMS) is the leading provider of services to prevent and end homelessness in Southern Massachusetts. The agency, founded in the early 1980s by a group of interfaith and community leaders, helps nearly 6,000 people annually who find themselves homeless, or at risk of homelessness, achieve more self-sufficiency through a range of services including homelessness prevention, emergency shelter, employment programs, and permanent supportive housing, FBMS, a proud partner of the United Way of Greater Plymouth County and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit agency with administrative offices in Quincy and Brockton and program offices across the South Shore. For more information, visit www.helpfbms.org.

About United Way of Greater Plymouth County
Established in 1922, United Way of Greater Plymouth County’s mission is “We unite people, ideas and resources to improve the lives of people in Greater Plymouth County.”  United Way envisions a “a safe, healthy and well-educated community in which people’s needs are met effectively, respectfully and compassionately” by focusing its resources on addressing the vital and interconnected needs of education, health and income.  United Way serves the communities of southeastern Massachusetts, including the city of Brockton and the towns of Abington, Avon, Bridgewater, Carver, Duxbury, East Bridgewater, Easton, Halifax, Hanover, Hanson, Kingston, Lakeville, Marshfield, Middleboro, Pembroke, Plymouth, Plympton, Rockland, Stoughton, West Bridgewater, and Whitman. www.uwgpc.org facebook.com/uwgpc