MetroWest Legal Services announced today it has received a $20,500 grant from the Boston Foundation to support the Senior Citizens Legal Project, through the Foundation’s Open Door Grants program.
“This grant will allow us continue to provide legal representation to seniors in the greatest need” Executive Director Elizabeth Soulé said today. “We look forward to building upon our record of providing critical legal representation in civil matters to hundreds of seniors each year in the Baypath, Springwell, and HESSCO service areas. We are grateful to the Boston Foundation for supporting our work.”
MetroWest Legal Services was founded in 1976 and today provides civil legal services, outreach and training to over 8,000 people in the MetroWest Region.
Open Door Grants are competitive, one-year grants designed for organizations whose proposal is focused on Greater Boston and whose values align with those of the Boston Foundation. Grants are awarded quarterly, and are selected by staff through an inclusive evaluation process. Funds for this grant come from the Boston Foundation’s Permanent Fund for Boston, Greater Boston’s only endowed fund focusing on the pressing needs of Greater Boston. The Permanent Fund has been made possible by more than a century of gifts from those who seek to support innovative solutions to the region’s most pressing problems since 1915.
The Senior Citizens Legal Project provides high-quality, civil legal services to persons sixty and over in 34 communities. The SCLP priorities are designed to target low-income and disadvantaged elders. The number of elders facing legal issues that threaten their basic human needs such as housing, income maintenance, and protection from exploitation has grown, as well as elders facing overwhelming debt which effects both physical and emotional health.
Currently, the priorities include housing, government benefits (including SSI, SSDI, SNAP benefits, MassHealth, and Veterans benefits), nursing home issues, elder abuse, financial exploitation, access to health care, family law issues, and bankruptcy and debt collection issues. In addition to direct case representation of clients, SCLP provides as series of community legal education presentations, training for professionals working with elders, and articles for senior center newsletters each year.
Since its incorporation in 1976, MetroWest Legal Services has helped tens of thousands of low-income clients with their civil legal problems. Its mission is to provide legal advocacy to protect and advance the rights of the poor, elderly, disabled and other disenfranchised people in our service area and to assist them in obtaining legal, social and economic justice. MWLS helps clients secure access to basic needs and challenge institutional barriers in order to achieve equal justice for all. We serve the following cities and towns:
Acton Ashland, Bedford, Bellingham, Belmont*, Brookline*, Canton*, Carlisle, Concord Dedham, Dover, Foxborough, Framingham, Franklin, Holliston, Hopkinton, Hudson, Lexington, Lincoln, Marlborough, Maynard, Medfield, Medway, Millis, Natick, Needham, Newton*, Norfolk, Northborough*, Norwood, Plainville, Sharon, Sherborn, Southborough*, Stow, Sudbury, Walpole, Waltham*, Watertown*, Wayland, Wellesley, Westborough*, Weston, Westwood, and Wrentham *elders only.
The Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, is one of the largest community foundations in the nation, with net assets of some $1 billion. In 2016, the Foundation and its donors paid $100 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and received gifts of more than $107 million. The Foundation is proud to be a partner in philanthropy, with more than 1,000 separate charitable funds established by donors either for the general benefit of the community or for special purposes. The Boston Foundation also serves as a major civic leader, think tank and advocacy organization, commissioning research into the most critical issues of our time and helping to shape public policy designed to advance opportunity for everyone in Greater Boston. The Philanthropic Initiative (TPI), a distinct operating unit of the Foundation, designs and implements customized philanthropic strategies for families, foundations and corporations both here and around the globe. For more information about the Boston Foundation or TPI, visit tbf.org or call 617.338.1700.