Local Area Grants

Cummings Foundation invites proposals for $25M in grants

Essex, Middlesex, Suffolk nonprofits encouraged to apply
25 Million Grant Program

Each July and August, Cummings Foundation, of Woburn, encourages Letters of Inquiry for its annual Cummings $25 Million Grant Program. This place-based philanthropic initiative will annually support 140 Massachusetts nonprofits based in and primarily serving Essex, Middlesex, and Suffolk counties.

“Although it’s a bit unusual for such a substantial funding program to focus on such a relatively small geographic area, the Cummings organization is dedicated to supporting the communities from which its funds were mostly derived and where its staff and leasing clients live,” said Joyce Vyriotes, deputy director of Cummings Foundation.

Among Cummings Foundation’s assets is a substantial suburban commercial real estate portfolio, which is managed on a pro bono basis by its affiliate, Cummings Properties, also of Woburn.

The Cummings $25 Million Grant Program expects to award 100 nonprofits $100,000 each, mostly payable over two to five years. Forty additional organizations, all of which have previously received a Cummings grant, will be awarded 10-year funding in the amount of $200,000 to $500,000 each.

The winners will be announced in May following a comprehensive nine-month process involving more than 70 volunteers and four different review stages.

“Our large staff of highly competent volunteers actually selects most of the grant winners each year,” said Vyriotes. “We are so grateful that the Foundation’s small professional staff can draw on the varied perspectives and expertise of these local community leaders who generously give of their time to make these incredibly difficult funding decisions.”

The Cummings $25 Million Grant Program eligibility requirements, timeline, and FAQs, as well as a link to begin the Letter of Inquiry, are all available at CummingsFoundation.org/grants.

This annual initiative began in 2012 and was known for many years as “$100K for 100.” Through it and other grants, the Foundation noted that it has now awarded more than $300 million to greater Boston nonprofits.

One of the largest private foundations in New England, Cummings Foundation was founded in 1986 by Bill and Joyce Cummings of Winchester. Bill also founded the Woburn-based commercial real estate firm itself, which leases and manages 11 million square feet of debt-free space, including Cummings Park and TradeCenter 128 in Woburn and the 2 million-square-foot Cummings Center, in Beverly. Most of its properties are owned by Cummings Foundation, with 100 percent of all rental profits supporting hundreds of local charities.

Please note that Cummings Foundation reserves the right to modify, add to, amend, or eliminate any of its eligibility requirements, priority funding areas, or policies at any time.