The Parker Foundation

Arts and Culture


Angkor Dance Troupe

$20,000 as a third-year grant for the dance troupe’s three-year strategic growth plan. The Angkor Dance Troupe is dedicated to the preservation of Cambodian folk and classical dance traditions. (Total support of $90,000 in 2016-2018.)

Cultural Organization of Lowell

$50,000 for the installation of “Hydro,” by sculptor Nancy Selvage to be located in the new Utopia Park in the Hamilton Canal District.

$15,000 in general operating support as the organization redefines and reestablishes itself as well as continues to bring cultural affairs and events in the City of Lowell.

Emerson College

$25,000 for ArtsEmerson’s See You Yesterday, a theater production featuring Cambodian artists and focusing on intergenerational relationships in the wake of the Cambodian genocide, with special outreach to Lowell residents.

Filmmakers Collaborative f/b/o Underexposed Films

$15,000 as final installment of a $25,000 challenge grant to support the production of a documentary film featuring the Metta Health Center in Lowell. The film explores the impact of trauma in refugee and immigrant communities, including the community in Lowell, and highlights the importance of culturally responsive integrative care.

First United Baptist Church

$5,000 for restoration to the historic 1826 church’s front columns.

Hellenic Culture and Heritage Society

$7,000 in second-year support for the Lowell Bicentennial Oral History project, which will chronicle the stories of city leaders active from the 1980’s to the present.  A selection of these interviews will be presented in book form to coincide with Lowell’s bicentennial celebrations in 2026. (Total project support of $14,000 in 2017-2018.)

Improbable Players

$15,000 towards performing fifteen Arts in Prevention plays in Lowell Public Middle Schools. The Improbable Players troupe uses theater performances to educate students about addiction and recovery.

Lowell Historical Society

$10,000 in support of operations for the Historical Society as it moves from its longtime location at the Boott Mill in the Lowell National historical Park.  The Society collects, preserves, and publishes materials related to Lowell and promotes the study of the city’s history, additionally sponsoring several lectures and workshops each year.

Lowell Parks & Conservation Trust, Inc.

$30,000 for capital improvements and expanded programming at the Spalding House.

Merrimack Repertory Theatre, Inc.

$50,000 toward salaries of new development staff.


Subtotal Arts and Culture: $242,000

Percentage of total: 22.2%


Development of Philanthropy


Greater Lowell Community Foundation

$50,000 in continued  support for a new development position and related expenses to advance fundraising efforts in continued efforts to build the foundation’s discretionary endowment.

Greater Lowell Community Foundation

$5,000 toward the endowment of the Tom Leggat Youth Opportunities Fund, which honors longtime Parker Foundation trustee Thomas E. Leggat, to continue its special award lunch ceremony for youth awardees and engagement of the Leggat family.


Subtotal Development of Philanthropy: $55,000

Percentage of total: 5%


Community and Economic Development


Lawrence CommunityWorks f/b/o Mill Cities Leadership Institute

$12,500 in continued support for the Mill Cities Leadership Institute and its work to nurture new leadership talent in Lawrence and Lowell.

Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice

$20,000 for a civic awareness campaign revolving around a filed federal court case that questions the legality of the city of Lowell’s at-large voting system in Lowell.

Mill City Grows

$50,000 for general operating support as it expands its effort to unite the diverse communities of Lowell through locally grown food.

Subtotal Community and Economic Development: $82,500

Percentage of total: 7.6%




Kids in Tech

$20,000 in start-up support for afterschool computer science tech clubs in the Lowell area.

Lowell Community Charter School Friends

$15,000 for materials as the school revamps its middle school literacy program.

Mass Insight Education and Research Institute, Inc.

Boston, MA

$10,000 in support of a project to increase student participation in Advanced Placement courses at Lowell High School.

United Teen Equality Center (UTEC)

$25,000 for UTEC’s new 2Gen early education center, supporting participant parents and their children through child care and family-centered services.  (Total support of $150,000 in 2016-2018.)

Subtotal Education: $70,000

Percentage of total: 6.4%




Health Law Advocates

$50,000 to provide mental health advocates for 130 youth who are involved or at risk of being involved in the juvenile court system in Lowell and surrounding communities. (Total project support of $100,000, 2017-18.)

Lowell House

$125,000 as the final installment toward a capital campaign to relocate the agency to space within the Lowell Community Health Center. Under the leadership of Coalition for a Better Acre, Lowell House’s original Merrimack Street site will be converted to sober apartments for adults recovering from addiction. (Total project support of $310,000 in 2015-2018.)

Merrimack Valley Project, Inc.

$15,000 to support the work of the Addiction & Criminal Justice committee, which advocates for state-funded transportation to recovering addicts seeking treatment in the greater Merrimack Valley region.

Place of Promise

$15,000 to double the capacity of its adult addiction recovery program.

Wayside Youth and Family Support Network

$10,000 to launch two new mental health support groups for LGBTQ youth attending middle school or high school in Lowell.  This project addresses the lack of an accessible LGBTQ therapeutic youth group for Lowell youth.


Subtotal Health: $215,000

Percentage of total: 19.7%


Human Services


Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell

$40,000 for its Pathways Initiative, which gives youth the support and job skills training they need to prepare for college and/or the workforce after high school graduation.

Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association of Greater Lowell

$30,000 for new staff to serve the increasing number of enrolled youth.

Catie’s Closet

$35,000 to hire a new staff member who will receive and fulfill special orders for clothing and toiletries to meet the immediate needs of children in the Lowell area.

Christ Church United in Lowell

$12,500 in continued support for the Church’s emergency assistance program for Lowell individuals in need, as encouraged by the will of Theodore Edson Parker.

Communities for Restorative Justice f/b/o Thrive Communities of Massachusetts

$20,000 to fund the position of a reentry coach for those who have experienced incarceration and are living in Lowell.

Community Teamwork, Inc.

$50,000 to coordinate the Lowell Partnership to End Youth Homelessness.

Community Teamwork, Inc. f/b/o African Community Center of Lowell

$40,000 in continued startup support to launch and sustain a community center for African immigrants and refugees living in the Greater Lowell area.

Essex County Community Foundation

$15,000 in continued support for the Greater Lawrence Disaster Relief Fund and related infrastructure expenses to help those affected by the September 13th gas crisis. (Total project support of $25,000 in 2018.)

Food Link, Inc.

$10,000 to expand food delivery services in Lowell.  Food Link regularly delivers food to the Lowell Transitional Living Center and House of Hope.

Gaining Ground, Inc.

$10,000 to construct a new hoop house to increase produce yield.

Massachusetts Alliance of Portuguese Speakers

$20,000 to support expanded staff time for a senior advocate position and outreach to Portuguese-speaking elders in Lowell .  The MAPS Lowell office provides social services including  immigration, housing, ESOL and citizenship services, youth and senior programs, and more.

One Can Help, Inc.

$20,000 to expand its Lowell program, which provides resources to families of youth in the juvenile court system.

Philanthropy Massachusetts

Boston, MA

$10,000 in support of the GMA Funder Community’s Trauma and Resilience Fund.

Plummer Youth Promise (formerly the Plummer Home for Boys)

$15,000 to expand an evaluation system for youth placed in foster care in Lowell and surrounding communities.

Project Citizenship

$35,000 to help Lowell-area residents obtain U.S. citizenship, in partnership with the Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association.

Sankofa Support Services

$7,200 to purchase diapers for distribution to low-income families in Lowell and surrounding communities.

The Wish Project

$10,000 to help the organization move into a larger warehouse so that it can continue to provide donated furniture, clothing, and household items to residents in need in the Lowell area.

United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley

$40,000 in renewed support for the Summer Experiences in Greater Lowell program, which provides camping, youth employment and early childhood education opportunities for Lowell children and youth.


Subtotal Human Services: $419,700

Percentage of total: 39%




Associated Grant Makers

$5,000 for renewed membership support.


Subtotal Memberships: $5,000

Percentage of total: 0.5%


Total Grants 2018: $1,089,200


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