New data released this week by Camp Harbor View show that direct cash payments to Boston families are having a transformative impact on nearly every aspect of their lives.
The Boston Globe covered the new data in an article on Nov. 8th — read it here.
It has been just over a year since two nonprofits, Camp Harbor View and UpTogether, teamed up to launch a privately funded $800,000 guaranteed income pilot program. The program provides 50 Boston households $7,000/year for two years, distributed in monthly payments of $583. These families are able to use the funds however they choose and do not need to pay it back.
Evaluations of survey data from the first year of the program provides strong evidence that cash payments to families helps them relieve economic stress, achieve stability, and invest in growth. The pilot also tracks a group of families who are not receiving funds in order to understand the qualitative and quantitative impact of the pilot.
Initial data show that:
Families receiving the payments are 40% less likely to have unmet household needs than the group not receiving payments (eg. child care, heating costs, or dental care)
During the first year of the pilot, families receiving payments reduced their risk of distress by 23%, while families not receiving payments had an 11% decrease.
Families receiving payments are more likely to…
Be able to pay bills
Save money consistently
Have over a month’s worth of income saved for an emergency
Pay for household needs like transportation, groceries, and childcare
Tierra Lyons, a parent in the program, said joining the program was a “no brainer” and that the monthly income has helped to stabilize her family’s finances and allowed her to save toward a down payment for a house.
“I had just never experienced this level of radical generosity. Now I can put all of my time, my energy, my resources into just supporting my family because I know that I’m supported as a parent,” Lyons said.
Camp Harbor View Executive Vice President Lisa Fortenberry said the early results are very encouraging — but not surprising.
“It’s an idea that seems too obvious to be as groundbreaking as it is,” said Camp Harbor View Executive Vice President Lisa Fortenberry. “People know what they need to support a healthy family, and with trust and partnership, they can make changes that lead to better physical and mental health, better housing, and education and career paths.”
Today, we’re proud to launch a campaign called “Ready to Run” featuring young people from our programs on billboards and on video screens across the city of Boston and suburbs.
Highlighting CHV’s partnership with Boston teens and families, the campaign will feature on two billboards on the Southeast Expressway (I-93), at Boston Logan Airport, across other transportation hubs and shopping centers across the metro area along with digital media.
Our goal with this campaign is to introduce Camp Harbor View to a new generation of Bostonians and raise awareness across Greater Boston about the impact CHV is having every single day. Like the billboards say, these young leaders are ready to run this town — and we’re ready to do everything we can to make that happen.
BOSTON (The Boston Globe) — Nobody says good morning like Chazz Guerra says good morning.
“G-O-O-D M-O-R-N-I-N-G,” Guerra half sang, half shouted into a bullhorn in front of the Great Hall. There are few things Guerra, a 25-year-old camp counselor, likes more than The First Day of Camp.
More than 200 Camp Harbor View middle schoolers were assembled in front of him on the sports fields, wilting in the hot and humid conditions around 9 a.m. on Monday — a tough crowd.
Camp Harbor View is a free summer camp for Boston middle schoolers on the southern end of Long Island in Boston Harbor. The Great Hall is the mess hall in the center of camp, with the ferry dock, sports fields, and high-ropes course to the north and the pool and arts pavilion to the south.
BOSTON (Boston 25 News) — Camp Harbor View is the brainchild of former Boston Mayor Tom Menino and Boston businessman Jack Connors, who wanted to find a use for the then-untouched land on Long Island. The idea was just to engage middle-schoolers during summer months. But whether it’s learning to sail, fish, climb a rock wall or learn a new sport, the free summer camp has become so much more to the city’s young people over the last 15 years.
Our Executive Director, Lisa Fortenberry, recently sat down with Jenny Johnson on Comcast Newsmakers to discuss the unforgettable summer ahead for CHV campers and why, now more than ever, the joys of just being a kid at camp can be a life-changing experience for middle schoolers emerging from pandemic isolation.
Boston, MA – Camp Harbor View is proud to be one of 140 local nonprofits to receive an annual grant through Cummings Foundation’s $25 Million Grant Program. CHV, a Boston-based organization, was chosen through a competitive review process, with a total of 580 applicants. Camp Harbor View will receive $1,000,000 over 10 years.
“Through Guaranteed Income we are investing more deeply in Boston families with whom we partner and this substantial commitment will be transformative as we work to promote social and economic mobility and long-term financial sustainability,” said Camp Harbor View Executive Director Lisa Fortenberry. “With this grant, Cummings Foundation is demonstrating their commitment to equity and opportunity for every Bostonian. We’re very grateful for their confidence and conviction in this important work.”
The Cummings $25 Million Grant Program supports Massachusetts nonprofits that are based in and primarily serve Middlesex, Essex, and Suffolk counties.
Through this place-based initiative, Cummings Foundation aims to give back in the areas where it owns commercial property. Its buildings are all managed, at no cost to the Foundation, by its affiliate, Cummings Properties. This Woburn-based commercial real estate firm leases and manages 11 million square feet of debt-free space, the majority of which exclusively benefits the Foundation.
“We are so fortunate in greater Boston to have such effective nonprofits, plus a wealth of talented, dedicated professionals and volunteers to run them,” said Cummings Foundation Executive Director Joyce Vyriotes. “We are indebted to them for the work they do each day to provide for basic needs, break down barriers to education and health resources, and work toward a more equitable society.”
The complete list of 140 grant winners, plus more than 900 previous recipients, is available at www.CummingsFoundation.org.Cummings Foundation has now awarded more than $375 million to greater Boston nonprofits.
About Camp Harbor View: Partnering with 1,000+ young Bostonians and their families each year, Camp Harbor View offers a one-of-a-kind summer camp for kids in grades 6-9, year-round leadership development for teens in grades 9-12, and comprehensive family services, including college and career planning, scholarships, and clinical support — all at no cost to families. About Cummings Foundation: Woburn-based Cummings Foundation, Inc. was established in 1986 by Joyce and Bill Cummings and has grown to be one of the largest private foundations in New England. The Foundation directly operates its own charitable subsidiaries, including New Horizons retirement communities, in Marlborough and Woburn, and Cummings Health Sciences, LLC. Additional information is available at www.CummingsFoundation.org.
We are still reeling from the Buffalo murders on May 14th, where a shooter influenced by hateful right-wing propaganda specifically targeted and killed Black people. We’re devastated by the news from Uvalde, Texas, yesterday, where one man killed 19 children and two adults at an elementary school. There have been 118 gun deaths each day in the U.S. this year. That’s an epidemic, and it must be stopped.
It’s ok to sit with your grief and anger today. It’s ok to feel despondent. And if you or young people in your life are looking for community at this difficult time, we’re here. Community is at the heart of what we do. And in community is where we all need to be in these impossible moments. To process our grief, to speak about our collective fear, to feel our shared anger. Together is where we need to be to protect our children, our communities of color.
Our team at Camp Harbor View always delivers a message to young people that we are here when they need us – to process and be in community. Our social work team is always ready to provide support, and the young activists in our Digital Leadership program are speaking out about gun safety reform and mental health awareness.
We will continue to dedicate ourselves to creating places for communities to learn and thrive without fear. This month’s tragedies are a reminder to hold each other close and commit to building a more peaceful, more equitable world.
We’re incredibly grateful for all those who joined us in celebrating Camp Harbor View on Saturday, May 21st at the SOWA Power Station in Boston’s South End.
Jack Connors, Jr., co-founder and chairman of Camp Harbor View, was joined by Dr. Anne Klibanski of Mass General Brigham, Jeffrey Leiden of Vertex, and Jack Shields of Shields Health Solutions, in co-hosting this year’s event.
Thanks to the generous support of donors, we are heading into the summer with the resources we need to provide an unforgettable summer camp experience for 1,000+ young Bostonians, along with comprehensive family services and year-round leadership development programs. To learn more about our work championing Boston’s future leaders, watch this short video that premiered at the event, where you’ll hear directly from two alumni on how CHV helped to shape their childhood, and their limitless futures.
This year’s Beach Ball, our first in-person event since 2019, was produced by Bryan Rafanelli of Rafanelli Events. Step inside the venue with the video below highlighting this special night.
BOSTON (The Boston Globe) – Cities aren’t the only proponents of giving no-strings-attached cash to people in need. Here come the nonprofits.
The national movement, whichhad its local roots in Chelsea and spread to Cambridge, aims to empower low-income households with monthly stipends and settle an age-old debate about whether we can trust poor people with money instead of having them constantly jump through hoops to receive aid.
Advocates of so-called guaranteed income programs believe that low-income households know best how to lift themselves out of poverty rather than being told what to do. It’s that combination of confidence and cash that can help people move up the economic ladder.
At least threelocal nonprofits have launched pilots in recent months: Camp Harbor View with 50 families that are receiving $583 a month for two years; United South End Settlements with 16 families that are getting $800 a month for 18 months; and UpTogether — in partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance, Harvard Business School, and others — has embarked on a research project providing nearly 1,500 families with varying amounts of money and social capital over 18 months.
50 Families will receive $7,000 per year for two years
Boston, MA – A group of Boston families are the newest champions for the impact of direct cash investments on social and economic mobility. Camp Harbor View recently launched a near $800,000 guaranteed income pilot, in partnership with anti-poverty nonprofit UpTogether, that provides 50 Boston households $7,000 each year for two years. These families are able to use the funds however they choose and do not need to pay it back.
After just five months, families are reporting greater overall financial stability. A participating parent, who wished to remain anonymous, says the program is having transformative effects on her physical and mental wellbeing as well as her financial stability.
“As a single mom, I have worked two jobs for the last six years to make ends meet. With the GI grant, I have been able to focus on my full-time job,” she said. “The time I’ve gained back has improved my focus, given me more time with my children, and allowed me to participate in professional development, which led to a promotion.”
Rooted locally, Camp Harbor View is committed to addressing the pervasive racial and economic opportunity gaps that exist in Boston.
“This pilot is about trusting and empowering families,” Camp Harbor View Chairman Jack Connors, Jr said. “I believe this will prove to be an innovative and necessary approach to partnering with families, ensuring that economic mobility is possible in our city.”
Each of the 50 enrolled families receives $583 in unrestricted cash monthly for the duration of the 24-month pilot. The participants were asked to set at least one financial goal at the start of the pilot and then they are given surveys quarterly—along with a small group of families who are not receiving funds—to collect both quantitative and qualitative data. To measure the efficacy of this two-year pilot, Camp Harbor View engaged an experienced independent evaluator to collect data and study outcomes.
The results from the pilot will have an impact beyond Boston. In partnership with the Economic Security Project, the Camp Harbor View learnings will be part of a growing body of national research on guaranteed income programs.
“As someone who lived in Boston for 17 years, and still loves the city, I am beyond excited to see the impact this pilot will have on families here,” said UpTogether CEO Jesús Gerena. “At UpTogether, we know it’s not just about the impact of unrestricted cash investments on individual households, but most importantly, the exponential impact those dollars will have on entire communities.”
About Camp Harbor View:Camp Harbor View works with 1,000+ young Bostonians and their families each year offering a one-of-a-kind summer camp for kids in grades 6-8, year-round leadership development for teens in grades 9-12, and comprehensive family services, including college and career planning, scholarships, clinical support, and food access — all at no cost to families.
About UpTogether:UpTogether is a community, a movement, and a platform that highlights, accelerates, and invests in the initiative people in financially under-resourced communities are taking to improve their lives and move up, together. Using compelling data and personal success stories to transform stereotypes, beliefs, and policies, UpTogether champions the effort to boost long-term economic mobility in communities that have been under-served for far too long.