Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce

BERKSHIRE BANK FOUNDATION AWARDS $10,000 TO SQUARE ONE

Berkshire Bank Foundation has awarded Square One in Springfield, Mass. a $10,000 emergency grant to support their organization, which took a terrible blow when their headquarters in Springfield was destroyed by the tornado last year. The grant is in addition to a $20,000 pledge made by the Foundation in 2011 and will be used to help cover operating costs/losses that were incurred as a result of the natural disaster.

Square One, one of the top childcare providers in the Springfield area was founded in 1883. Their programs include both center and home based childcare as well as Parenting Works, a program that provides parent education, support and training through groups, home visitation and case management.

Square One currently operates four children's centers within the city of Springfield and one in Holyoke which serve 1,650 children.  They also provide before and after school care for elementary school aged children in school and center settings.  Kid Stop is learning focused and includes a physical fitness element through Square One's Go Fit program which was previously supported by a Berkshire Bank Foundation grant.

Peter J. Lafayette, Executive Director of Berkshire Bank Foundation said “. Berkshire Bank is pleased to provide this additional financial support to Square One as they continue the process of rebuilding. Berkshire Bank has a long history of support for Square One and we feel this is a direct investment in the children they serve.  Berkshire Bank will continue to provide the financial and volunteer support needed to help the community heal and rebuild. Between our financial investments and the volunteer support of our employees we are pleased to play a part in this process” added Lafayette.

While Berkshire Bank Foundation’s priorities are education and community/economic development projects, it also donates to youth, cultural and human service organizations.  A complete list of Berkshire Bank Foundation supported organizations in 2012 can be found by visiting www.berkshirebank.com/foundation.

In addition to financial support, the Foundation also administers the bank’s growing Employee Volunteer Program that carries out group community service projects benefiting schools, nonprofit organizations and communities within the bank’s service area. In 2011, Berkshire Bank employees completed 67 volunteer projects in which over 50% of the bank’s employees participated donating over 26,000 hours of service through both company-sponsored and individual volunteer efforts to help their local communities. Berkshire Bank received National Recognition from the American Banker Association for its community service efforts through the Employee Volunteer Program this past February.  

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