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UB Foundation Mass Dedicates $30,000 to Funder Collaborative

UB Foundation Mass Dedicates $30,000 to Funder Collaborative

The United Bank Foundation Massachusetts announced today that they will dedicate $30,000 to the Funder Collaborative for Reading Success (FCRS) to help fulfill its goal of ensuring every child in Springfield, Mass. is reading at grade level by the fourth grade.

The FCRS targets its resources on Springfield children from birth to nine years old whose literacy, language and reading skills are below level for their age and/or grade level. The Funder Collaborative also supports programs that help ensure parents and guardians have the resources and guidance they need to provide a literacy-rich home environment for their children.

FCRS invests the funding to a variety of programs and areas of focus, including family education and engagement; early education and care; out-of-school time; and summer learning programs. Their ultimate goal is to impact the language, emergent literacy and reading schools of young children in Springfield.

Based on recent statistics regarding reading proficiency and overall education, the Board members of United’s Massachusetts Foundation unanimously approved the $30,000 grant. Only 40% of third graders in Springfield are reading proficiently as measured by the 2014 English Language Arts portion of the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS).

The $30,000 from the United Bank Foundation Massachusetts, which will be granted at $10,000 for three years, is part of the pooled fund administered by the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, a leading charitable organization in the Pioneer Valley that brings together individuals, groups and businesses to aggregate resources for charitable purposes.

“One of the four key areas that our Foundation dedicates funding to is education initiatives that effectively support and enhance our children’s learning opportunities. The Foundation’s Board members felt very strongly that what the Funder Collaborative is doing with regards to bolstering the reading proficiency of our young children in Springfield was undoubtedly worthy of our financial support,” said Dena M. Hall, Western Mass Regional President, Chief Marketing Officer and President of the United Bank Foundation Massachusetts.

“We want our children to have every chance and the resources available at a young age to help them have academic and life success. This will prepare them to be valuable contributors to the culture, economy and overall health and well-being of the Greater Springfield’s community. Our hope is that our commitment to the Funder Collaborative will help them achieve this goal today and for generations to come,” Hall added.

This is the third year that United’s Foundation has made a contribution to the Funder Collaborative.

For more information about the United Bank Foundation Massachusetts or the Bank’s charitable giving programs, go to www.bankatunited.com. To learn about the Funder Collaborative for Reading Success, please visit www.readby4thgrade.com. For more about the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts see www.communityfoundation.org.  

Funder Collaborative for Reading Success

Standing (left to right): Sally Fuller; Irene E. & George A. Davis Foundation, Dena Hall; United Bank, Sylvia De Haas Phillips; United Way of Pioneer Valley, Ward Caswell; Beveridge Family Foundation, Kathleen Traphagen; Consultant, Gary Levante; Berkshire Bank, Jennifer Gabriel; TD Bank.

Seated (left to right): Susan Wilson; Peoples Bank, Jack Dill; Colebrook Realty, Nancy Reiche; Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, Mary Walachy; Irene E. & George A. Davis Foundation.

Not Pictured: Katie Allen- Zobel; Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts, Kristine Baptiste; MassMutual Financial, John Davitt; Babson Capital Management LLC, Paul Judd; Baystate Health, Dora Robinson; United Way of Pioneer Valley.