~ Submitted by Bopha Malone
Since its inception in 1997, countless people and businesses in Greater Lowell have trusted the Greater Lowell Community Foundation to provide leadership, education, and financial support to address social, educational, economic, environmental, and cultural needs in our communities – including Bedford. So I was thrilled to attend the Greater Lowell Community Foundation (GLCF) annual meeting and 25th anniversary celebration recently, where Presidential Historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Doris Kearns Goodwin was their guest.
Through my work at Enterprise Bank in Lowell and as a trustee of the Women Working Wonders Fund (a component fund of the GLCF), I’ve seen first-hand the vital work this wonderful organization does and the positive impact they have made in the 21 communities that they serve.
In 1997, the Foundation started a $50,000 endowment consisting of 47 funds. Today, they’ve grown their endowment to $58 million in nearly 400 funds. Over the past year, they’ve awarded more than $500,000 in scholarships and $4.4 million in grants! Bedford is one of the communities that GLCF serves, and the Foundation has expressed an interest in doing even more to support our town’s great through partnerships and grants.
Doris Kearns Goodwin spoke about U.S. presidents, from Lincoln to LBJ, and the qualities of leadership that change people’s lives. With the many challenges the U.S. is facing—Covid-19, gun violence, and assaults on democracy—Kearns Goodwin reminded guests that our country has gone through tough times like these before. She reflected on the many crises our country has faced and encouraged citizens to have faith and hope that we as a nation can overcome these challenges, beginning with hard work at the local level. I left inspired and ready for Bedford to take on these challenges!
Most recently, GLCF supported the following Bedford-based organizations with grant funding: Minuteman Senior Services, Middlesex Community College Bedford Food Pantry, and The Edinburg Center. To learn more about GLCF and resources available to nonprofits or how to open your own fund, visit: www.glcfoundation.org.