Supporting the Greater Boston Community
Over the last month the Cambridge Mutual Aid Network has grown to 500+ volunteers, uplifted 500+ neighbors, and provided more than $50,000 in direct aid for our community. As we celebrate ways in which our community supports each other, we also recognize that this crisis is not felt equally among communities in the greater Boston area. We wanted to take a moment and highlight some ways of contributing beyond our community to our neighbors in Chelsea. These opportunities include financial donations, food and supply donations, driving and delivering groceries, and remote language volunteering.
Thank you to everyone who has participated in the food drive so far. Right now, the most efficient way to help make sure the food pantry has enough supplies for all who need it is to make financial donations directly to the Chelsea Collaborative. Local restaurant Grendel's Den is also offering a way to purchase grocery boxes with high-priority items (such as rice, beans, and masa) for delivery to the Chelsea Collaborative, which allows you to support this beloved local business and our neighbors in Chelsea at the same time. If you have groceries or supplies that you would like to donate, we are continuing to deliver food and supply donations every Tuesday and Thursday to the Chelsea Collaborative. Click below to find out more!
New Option Below: Buy a Grocery Box for a Family in Need at a Local Restaurant
Financial Contributions to Chelsea Organizations
These Chelsea organizations who would benefit immensely from financial contributions at this time. These funds are being shared after discussions with leading community organizers in Chelsea. If you are in a position to donate, please consider the following:
The Chelsea Collaborative is a long-standing community organization focusing on the social and political empowerment of Chelsea residents. Due to the unprecedented need in their community, they have begun operating a food pantry that provides food to roughly 3,000 families every week.
Donations to the Chelsea collaborative will allow them to place cost-effective bulk orders for the most needed items, and provide emergency housing stabilization for informal subletters at risk of eviction.
The Chelsea Collaborative has joined city partners to launch the One Chelsea Fund. The One Chelsea Fund will help families and individuals who are severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In recognition of the crisis, the Chelsea Teachers Union (CTU) is working to collect donations to disburse to families who are suffering from financial hardship in this time of need. The fund is being run by the Union in coordination with social workers, community organizations, and the city of Chelsea, and others.
Your donations will help provide emergency funds to assist immigrant workers and their families. The fund will prioritize support to individuals and families who are undocumented or seeking asylum who have significant needs and limited or no other resources and supports. Donations will go towards rent, utilities, food, and other basic necessities. Because of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, immigrant families need our support now more than ever. More details on Movimiento Cosecha available here.
Buy a Grocery Box for a Chelsea Family at a Local Restaurant
Are you looking for ways to help with our food drive without an extra trip to the grocery store? You can support Grendel's Den, a beloved local business, when you order a $40 or $60 grocery box for families in need. These boxes contain foods that are in high-demand at the food pantry but can be difficult to find in stores, such as dried beans and masa. Visit the Grendel's Den online order page and scroll to the bottom for the "BUY GROCERIES FOR FAMILIES IN NEED" option. Grendel's and CMAN will deliver you donation directly to the Chelsea Collaborative food pantry--no car or shopping trip needed!
Donation Drive for Food and Supplies
Every Tuesday and Thursday, Chelsea Collaborative in Chelsea turns into a food and supply pantry. They recently fed an estimated 2,500 people in one day. Recently, they have needed to turn away families without food, so donations of new and unopened food and supplies are deeply needed and will be greatly appreciated.
All donations are appreciated, but please prioritize these items requested by the Chelsea community: rice, lentils, beans (such as dried or canned red, black, pinto, garbanzo, split peas), fruits, vegetables, maseca flour, crackers (such as saltines or ritz crackers), cereal (such as Cheerios and other popular kinds), oil (such as canola oil, Crisco, and other neutral oils), soup, pasta, pasta sauce, sausage, milk, eggs, bread, chicken, tuna, protein bars, formula, baby food, and diapers. Donations of hand sanitizer and masks (disposable or cloth) are also appreciated. Right now, due to increases in need in the Chelsea community, the highest priority items are dry goods, such as rice, beans, maseca flour, cereal, and pasta.
If you would like to bring your donation yourself, you can drive to the Chelsea Collaborative headquarters at 318 Broadway in Chelsea after 9am on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Otherwise, you can contact your neighborhood point person to find a drop-off spot near you in Cambridge! Additional drop-off sites are listed below. All items will then be driven to Chelsea by our volunteers.
Our Cambridge spots for donation are:
22 Rice Street
Drop it off in the box on the first floor back porch of 22 Rice Street. Once you get to the triple-decker at 22 Rice, walk through the lawn on the right until you get to the back of the house. The box will be on the back porch.
If you can, please save perishables deliveries until Monday.
230 B Pearl Street
Please put donations in the box under the stairs.
If leaving perishable items, text 617-682-0733.
Remote and In-Person Volunteering
Interested in traveling to Chelsea, assembling grocery packages, and delivering them by car to residences of folks in need of assistance? Fill out this form.
Do you have multilingual skills, and are interested in helping folks navigate the social services available to them? CONNECT is looking for remote volunteers. They will be prioritizing volunteers who have Spanish or Arabic language skills, and/or are able to commit to at least 5 hours a week. Fill out this form to sign up as a volunteer.