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CASPAR Awarded 10-Year Sustaining Grant from Cummings Foundation

CASPAR is one of 33 Massachusetts nonprofts that were recently awarded a total of $10 million from the Woburn-based Cummings Foundation through its new Sustaining Grants program, which provides funding for up to 10 years. CASPAR is set to receive $300,000 over that period for its vital services in Cambridge and Somerville.

"All of us at CASPAR are profoundly grateful to Cummings Foundation for this generous funding," said Bay Cove Human Services/CASPAR President & CEO Bill Sprague of the grant. "It will have a significant impact on our ability to support individuals battling addiction and homelessness—not just today, but for years to come."

CASPAR plans to use the Sustaining Grant funds to further the mission of its FirstStep Street Outreach Program, which provides lifesaving support to the homeless and unsheltered men and women of Cambridge. This support takes many different forms: providing meals and clothing, rides to our Emergency Services shelter, access to CASPAR's full spectrum of addiction treatment programs, help in obtaining identification, referrals for medical and psychiatric treatment, and much more. The Sustaining Grant will make it possible for CASPAR to expand the FirstStep program and operate it seven days a week, helping to improve the health and wellbeing of the unsheltered residents of Cambridge, particularly those struggling with addiction.

The Sustaining Grants program builds on Cummings Foundation's $100K for 100 program. First offered in 2012, $100K for 100 annually awards $10 million through multi-year grants of $100,000 each to 100 nonprofits. Grant recipients that received their final grant disbursements in 2017 were automatically considered for the Sustaining Grants initiative in 2018.

"Long-term financial support is rare for nonprofits, making fundraising a constant and time-consuming task for organizations like CASPAR," said Joyce Vyriotes, deputy director of Cummings Foundation. "The Sustaining Grants are intended to provide some relief, allowing them to focus more of their time and energy on delivering and enhancing their important services."

To learn more about Cummings Foundation, visit www.CummingsFoundation.org.

“Strengthening Our Community” 2018 An Unprecedented Success for CASPAR!

The Marriott Courtyard Cambridge played host to nearly 200 CASPAR supporters on April 12, as the agency welcomed old friends and new to our 2018 “Strengthening Our Community,” event. The evening celebrating the life-saving work done by CASPAR programs--as well as the brave and inspiring individuals who have received or are currently receiving services from us--was a resounding success, raising nearly $200,000 to support our work on the frontlines of the opioid crisis.

The event brought together civic, community and business leaders from throughout Cambridge and Somerville, longtime supporters and brand-new friends, advocates for men and women battling addiction and/or homelessness, employees of CASPAR and Bay Cove Human Services and others to honor those we serve, those who serve them, and the generous supporters who help make the work we do possible. In the process, "Strengthening Our Community" 2018 became the most successful fundraiser in our agency's history!

At the event, Tom Andrews and the team at Alexandria Real Estate Equities were honored with The Carl F. Barron Catalyst For Change Award, for their longstanding support of CASPAR, their commitment to creating positive change in their community, and their work behind-the-scenes to help homeless neighbors in Cambridge. The award—named for a longtime supporter of CASPAR's work and presented this year by Carl's son, Ken Barron—is given each year to recognize important individuals who have made a positive and lasting impact in the communities of Cambridge and/or Somerville. Guests also enjoyed delicious hors d'oeuvres and a live auction led by event co-chairs Jeff Lockwood, Global Head of Communications at Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research, and Sarah Gallop, Co-Director of MIT's Office of Government and Community Relations.

All of us at CASPAR offer our deepest thanks to all our guests and generous donors, with particular gratitude to our wonderful event sponsors (Please check out our Supporters page for a complete list!). Kudos also to our hosts, the Marriott Courtyard Cambridge; our dedicated staff of volunteers who helped make the event shine; and our Director of Development, Julia W. Londergan, for all her fantastic efforts in making this an amazing evening for CASPAR!

Please visit our Facebook page to see photos from the event. Thank you so much for your continued support of CASPAR, and we hope we'll see you at "Strengthening Our Community" 2019!

CASPAR Mourns the Passing of Hilma Unterberger

All of us at CASPAR were terribly saddened to learn of the passing of one of the organization's founders and steadfast longtime supporters. Hilma Unterberger, a lifelong advocate for individuals batttling addiction and living with mental health challenges, co-founded CASPAR in 1970 and made a tangible difference in the lives of countless men and women during her lifetime. All of us within the organization owe her a debt of gratitude, and we send our prayers and strength to her family during this sad time.

A celebration of Hilma's life will be held on Sunday, September 11, beginning at 1:30 p.m., at Lasell Village, 120 Seminary Ave., in the Auburndale section of Newton. Her obituary may be found here.

CASPAR Featured on MassRealty Site

The popular statewide real estate brokerage website MassRealty recently published a piece about CASPAR on its page devoted to Somerville. The story, "CASPAR Helps People to Build Healthy and Fulfilling Lives," talks about the work our organization does with men and women who are homeless and/or battling addiction in Somerville and Cambridge. Our thanks to MassRealty for helping spread the word about the vital resources CASPAR provides to the communities of Cambridge and Somerville!

To read the article, click here.

CASPAR, DivcoWest and the Kendall Square Association Celebrate a Fantastic Summer Block Party!

On June 16, CASPAR was a guest of honor at the One Kendall Square Block Party in Cambridge’s Kendall Square. This celebration of the summer season brought together those who live, work and play in Kendall Square for an evening of delicious food and drinks sold by One Kendall Square restaurants Bon Me, Belly Wine Bar, State Park, The Blue Room, BeanTowne, Friendly Toast, Mamaleh’s Deli, Smoke Shop, Cambridge Brewing Company and Flat Top Johnny’s; live music from Duppy Conquerors, The Soggy Po Boys and DJ Ryan Brown; and all sorts of fun activities, from lawn games to a prize wheel.

The evening—hosted by the Kendall Square Association and kindly sponsored by our good friends at DivcoWest—served as a fundraiser for CASPAR. Staff were on hand to share information about the important services we provide, and guests gave generously to the cause, donating more than $1,000 to support our Emergency Shelter and other programs.

CASPAR Honored to be Part of the 2016 Taste of Cambridge

On July 12, hundreds of foodies gathered in Central Square for the 2016 Taste of Cambridge event, which celebrated the delicious, creative, healthy and award-winning cuisine for which Cambridge is known, and featured samples of food and drink from more than 100 local restaurants and local specialty butcher, cheese, honey, wine, beer, specialty drinks and coffee purveyors.

Those who attended the event not only got to enjoy scrumptious and mouthwatering cuisine, but the price of admission also helped a number of deserving local non-profits: Food for Free, the Institute for Health and Recovery, The Young Peoples' Project, The Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House, Paine Senior Services, and CASPAR. We are incredibly grateful and honored to have been among this year's chosen beneficiaries.

CASPAR and Bay Cove Human Services Join in a Strategic Partnership

Affiliation Strengthens Addiction Programs and Homelessness Services in Cambridge and Somerville

Effective July 1, 2014, CASPAR and Boston-based non-profit Bay Cove Human Services entered into a strategic partnership, to better provide care and services for people struggling with addictions in Cambridge and Somerville.

“The CASPAR Board of Directors undertook a strategic planning process that determined a merger would be the best way to ensure the future of our programs and services for the people and communities CASPAR serves,” said Francesca DeFabrizio, President of the CASPAR Board of Directors. “In Bay Cove, CASPAR has a partner who shares our core values and has a proven track record of working with local communities to build successful programs. The combined expertise of Bay Cove and CASPAR staff, along with the increased capacity created by this affiliation, puts CASPAR on strong footing to meet the growing demand for addiction services in Cambridge and Somerville.”

“We are honored to be partnering with such a well-known and highly regarded organization, and very excited to work with the communities of Cambridge and Somerville,” said Bill Sprague, President & CEO of Bay Cove. “Both CASPAR and Bay Cove have been offering high quality addiction programs for four decades, and together we will be in an even stronger position to provide the best possible services to the people who need them now and in the years ahead.”

The strategic partnership exists under Bay Cove’s corporate structure, with CASPAR retaining its non-profit status, name and brand identity under this new relationship. Bay Cove’s Board of Directors have assumed fiduciary responsibility and governance of CASPAR, with Bay Cove’s executive team assuming management responsibility. Ruth Fishbein, past President of the CASPAR Board of Directors, has joined the Bay Cove Board of Directors, and several other members of CASPAR’s Board of Directors are now members of Bay Cove’s Board of Advocates―an adjunct Board that provides expertise, volunteer support, and advocacy on behalf of the organization and the people it serves.

CASPAR, Inc. (www.casparinc.org) is a non-profit organization founded in 1970 in response to the need for community-based services for those affected by substance abuse and related issues such as homelessness and mental illness in Cambridge and Somerville. Since then CASPAR has built a comprehensive array of outreach, shelter, stabilization, residential, aftercare, education, and prevention services. CASPAR focuses on programs that are safe, accessible, and supportive and that meet the needs of a diverse population of high-risk men, women, children and adolescents, most of whom are economically disadvantaged.

Bay Cove Human Services, Inc. (www.baycove.org) is a non-profit organization founded in 1974, with its first program offering services for people with addictions in Boston. Today, Bay Cove provides effective, compassionate care to individuals and families who face the challenges of developmental disabilities, mental illness, drug and alcohol addiction and aging at more than 160 sites in Greater Boston and southeastern Massachusetts. Bay Cove offers a continuum of drug and alcohol addiction services, including substance abuse prevention, detoxification, short-term residential programming, individual and group counseling, and outpatient treatment for opiate addiction.