Grant to Help Alleviate Loneliness and Build Community

On June 18,2020, Bridges Together received a grant from Natixis Investment Managers to distribute 300 decks of Grand Conversation Cards (GCC) to nonprofits working with lonely older adults. The grant was submitted by Patricia (Patty) Corey, a member of our Board of Trustees, through her employer’s charitable giving grant program. Natixis called for requests for organizations in the Boston area fighting on the frontlines of the current global health pandemic. The Natixis IM grant committee received more than 40 grant submissions and assessed factors such as direct frontline impact, size of organization, and employee involvement to determine the funding allocation.

The grant read, in part:

“[These Grand Conversation Cards] will empower [people working with frail elders] to connect in meaningful ways with loved ones and caregivers. Just imagine: instead of talking about the latest COVID-19 developments, they could discuss one of the 40+ questions such as: ‘When you were little, who took care of you when you weren’t at school?’ OR ‘If you could choose one song to be your ‘anthem,’ what would it be and why?’

These questions are designed to provide connections as well as opportunities for reflection and pondering. The Grand Conversation Cards lead the oldest members of our community out of social isolation and back into community – even during this trying global health and social crisis.”

Andrea J. Fonte Weaver, Executive Director, and Patty decided which Massachusetts organizations that care for frail elders would receive the cards including Age-Strong Boston, Friendship Works, Nesterly and Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services.

We thank Natixis IM for their generosity during this difficult time as we navigate the new social realities of this pandemic.

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