Community Empowerment Initiative

As a community, Springfield is rich in programs, but poor in systems. While there are an array of social service organizations across the city, the community lacks sufficient cross sector coordination to identify gaps, leverage resources, increase communication, and find opportunities to benefit those most marginalized in our community.

springfield works logo
Western Mass EDC

Springfield WORKS, a community wide initiative with the Western Mass Economic Development Council team, is pleased to announce that they have received a $400,000 Community Empowerment and Reinvestment Grant. The funding from this grant will help facilitate systemic socioeconomic changes in the city of Springfield. The goal is to mitigate the negative impacts of incarceration, by identifying those most at-risk at a younger age.

The goal is to engage front-line organizations in an assessment and planning process. Through a survey, data will be collected and each individual organization will become better situated to aid in the necessary changes. This survey will be conducted across the BIPOC demographic, encompassing both youth and adults. A series of community forums will also be held during this time period.

Ultimately, the results of this survey will allow Springfield WORKS, along with the seven sub grantees, to determine unmet needs, close service gaps and work to empower residents and create economic stability.

With this grant, we aim to make systemic and structural changes, which will have a measurable impact on those most at risk in Springfield.

Our goal is to engage front-line organizations in an assessment and planning process. As  data is collected, the team and each individual organization will be better situated to make  systemic and structural changes, which will have a measurable impact on those most at risk  in Springfield. This goal is broken down into a multi-step process:

Goal 1

Identify needs in workforce and intervention programs for the formerly incarcerated.

Outcome 1A. Provide $25,000 sub-grants for eight key organizations that serve low-income, BIPOC, at-risk youth, and people at risk of or having completed incarceration. These funds will increase our partners’ capacity to serve these families.

Outcome 1B.  Work with subgrantees to provide cross-training across sectors. As a result, each of the individual partners will be better able to serve clients and the network of providers will be more effective at reaching, engaging and supporting our target population.

Goal 2

Increase knowledge of the gaps and opportunities for successful workforce engagement for youth and young adults in Springfield.

Outcome 2A.  Outreach to map community services and ID where systems are misaligned.

Outcome 2B.  Develop and collect needs assessment data from eight key informant partner agencies, youth, and residents. Through surveys and community information sessions with key informants.

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