FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (November 16, 2023) – The New England Revolution Players Collaborative Fund has donated $10,000 each to Circle of Hope and the Urban Farming Institute of Boston. With these latest grants, the coalition of Revolution players has now donated $240,000 in funding to grassroots organizations in New England that are leaders in the ongoing effort to promote social equity and fight systemic racism.
“We’re incredibly excited to partner with the Urban Farming Institute of Boston and Circle of Hope, two groups doing critical work to fight food and clothing scarcity in our community,” said Revolution goalkeeper Earl Edwards Jr., the President and Co-Founder of Black Players for Change. “Providing our most vulnerable populations with clothing and equitable food access is essential to creating a thriving community. We’re proud to support the work both of these organizations do each day to create a better tomorrow.”
The Urban Farming Institute of Boston believes that food is a universal right, and envisions a city whose vacant land is abundant, food cultures are diverse, and people are excited to grow and share food. Based in Mattapan, UFI is acquiring land and building farms with the goal of bringing people delicious food and healthy eating, transforming neglected land in neighborhoods, and contributing to economic and environmental resilience by localizing the food system.
"Urban Farming Institute is honored to partner with the New England Revolution and its players. Partnerships of this nature are critical to UFI’s ability to raise the health of our community,” said Pat Spence, UFI President and CEO. “Everyone has to eat, and we endeavor to make sure that the residents of Roxbury, Dorchester and Mattapan have access to healthy food, and vibrant and beautiful outdoor space that promote overall health and wellness. At UFI we don’t just grow food, we grow people. And now we are able to strengthen our mission and our community in partnership with our friends at the New England Revolution."
The mission of Circle of Hope is to provide infants, children, and adults experiencing homelessness in Boston and Metro West with clothing and necessities in order to preserve and enhance overall health and personal dignity. Based in Needham, Circle of Hope continually provides seasonally appropriate clothing, shoes, linens, and hygiene essentials to 25 homeless shelters, healthcare clinics, and community programs.
“I’m profoundly grateful to the New England Revolution’s Players Collaborative Fund for their generous $10,000 gift to Circle of Hope. For so many people experiencing homelessness, clean clothing or basic hygiene essentials are the first vital step on their road to recovery, stability, and greater wellbeing,” said Circle of Hope Executive Director Ari Barbanell. “With the New England Revolution’s support, Circle of Hope can meet these basic needs for thousands of people, providing them with essentials for health, dignity, comfort, and safety.”
Each beneficiary of the Revolution Players Collaborative Fund, which is funded by the Kraft family, is selected by a coalition of Revolution players including several members of Black Players for Change, an independent organization consisting of over 170 Black players, coaches, and staff of MLS, working to bridge the racial equality gap that exists in society. Circle of Hope and the Urban Farming Institute of Boston join previous beneficiaries Boston Opportunity Agenda, Follow My Steps, the National Black Doll Museum of History & Culture, Get Girls Going, Resilient Sisterhood Project, Dress for Success Providence, Bottom Line Boston, Inner City Weightlifting, the Center for Health & Justice Transformation, New England Culinary Arts Training (NECAT), the Emerging Adult Court of Hope (EACH), The Theater Offensive, the North Shore Juneteenth Association, Breakthrough Greater Boston, Chica Project, and Women of Color Entrepreneurs.
ABOUT BLACK PLAYERS FOR CHANGE:
Black Players for Change (BPC) is an independent 501(c)(3) organization consisting of over 170+ Black players, coaches and staff of MLS, working to bridge the racial equality gap that exists in society. BPC is committed to tackling the racial injustices that have limited Black people from having an equitable stake in the game of soccer and society. Among the many goals the organization strives to advance the attention on human rights inequalities from protest to programs, partnerships and policies that address systemic discrimination. For more information visit www.BlackPlayersForChange.org or follow us on Twitter and Instagram. #TogetherThereWillBeChange.