In appreciation and acknowledgement of the dedicated service offered by nonprofit professionals during the pandemic, Berkshire United Way, Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation, Northern Berkshire United Way and Williamstown Community Chest partnered to Help the Helpers with grants from the Berkshire County COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund.

Local nonprofits were invited to apply for 16 grants of $500 each to be used toward staff well-being activities. After receiving 23 applications, the partners stepped up to fill the funding gap and award all 23 proposals, ranging from projects focused on team-building and staff recognition to wellness and other activities.

A total of $11,500 will be evenly distributed among the 23 nonprofits to show their staff appreciation. The funding includes $8,000 from the COVID-19 Fund and $3,500 from the Fund partners.

The recipients include the Becket Athenaeum; Youth Center Inc., Cheshire; Dalton CRA; Berkshire Community College Adult Learning Program, Berkshire South Regional Community Center, Community Health Programs, Hevreh of Southern Berkshire, and Volunteers in Medicine Berkshires, all in Great Barrington; Lee Youth Association; Lenox Library and WAM Theatre, Lenox.

Also, Berkshire Family and Individual Resources, Berkshire Food Project, Berkshire Nursing Families, Child Care of the Berkshires, ECU-Health Care, and ROOTS Teen Center, all in North Adams; Berkshire Family YMCA, Berkshire Immigrant Center, Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, Community Legal Aid, Goodwill Industries of the Berkshires & Southern Vermont, and Roots Rising, all in Pittsfield.

To learn how the grants are being used, visit

Earlier this year, Berkshire United Way and Northern Berkshire United Way awarded eight childcare programs $500 each to show appreciation for their staff, thanks to funding from United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley through the Childcare Relief Fund. Visit for more information.

Jeannie Maschino can be reached at 413-496-6256 or