NORWOOD — Town of Norwood General Manager Tony Mazzucco is pleased to announce that the Town of Norwood has launched the Norwood Fund and is seeking donations to help residents in need during and after the COVID-19 crisis.
The Norwood Fund is a combination of four donation funds. Three of the funds are currently operated by the Town and one fund has been newly created in response to COVID-19. Donations to the fund will be separated into four areas in order to maximize the fund’s reach to citizens most in need.
- Norwood Food Security Fund: This is a new donation fund established by the Town specifically to provide temporary food assistance, primarily for those who do not qualify for other sources of food relief and are in need of quick, short-term assistance. This fund will be managed by Council on Aging staff who have experience managing similar programs.
- Council on Aging Senior Citizen Donation Fund: This existing fund assists seniors with any needs, including food assistance and other costs or services needed by seniors. The COA fund is managed by the Council on Aging and overseen by COA Director Kerri McCarthy.
- Gift of Warmth Fund: Started by John Carroll many years ago, this existing fund provides assistance for individuals with heat and other utility payments as well as similar wraparound services related to utilities, including but not limited to small repairs. The Gift of Warmth fund is a program of the General Manager’s office and is managed by the Town’s Director of Administrative Services Cathy Carney.
- Veteran’s Assistance Fund: Veterans are particularly hard hit and this existing fund provides wraparound and additional services that are not available through the local Veterans assistance program or the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The Veterans Assistance Fund is overseen by Veteran’s Agent Teddy Mulvehill.
Through the funds, the Town can assist any resident, but is focusing on seniors, veterans and those in greatest need of relief. The funds are not meant to replace existing assistance programs but to complement those services to expand the available assistance.
“During these difficult times, we want to do everything in our power to help our residents who are in need,” General Manager Mazzucco said. “Though there are many wonderful organizations and programs out there, the Norwood Fund makes available one specific place for people to help their neighbors, especially the groups who are in the greatest of need.”
The Town has existing protocols in place for each donation fund and decisions to disburse relief through the fund are made on a case by case and need basis. These protocols are based on several guidelines, including the protocols of programs that provide similar assistance, as well as state and federal statutes. Recipients of the funds must be Norwood residents.
All funds are subject to the Town’s internal controls and accounting procedures which comply with state and federal accounting guidelines and state statutes. The Town is audited regularly and keeps an accounting of all funds according to state and federal guidelines. These measures ensure transparency and accountability.
Those who feel they need assistance from the Norwood Fund should call the citizen information center, staffed Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., at 781-352-2363. Call takers will refer you to the available services, triage your specific concern and find the best means to assist you, which may or may not be assistance from the Norwood Fund.
Though the fund is not for businesses, there are a number of federal resources for small businesses outlined here, and state resources outlined here. Local businesses can also contact the Town’s citizen information center at 781-352-2363 and call takers can connect you with staff in the Town’s planning and economic development office that can guide businesses to available resources.
How to Donate
People can donate to the Norwood Fund by:
- Dropping a check off at the Town Hall drop box, located outside in the parking lot behind Town Hall, 566 Washington St. Checks should be made payable to “Norwood Fund.”
- Mailing a check to Town Hall, 566 Washington St., Norwood, MA 02062. Checks should be made payable to “Norwood Fund.”
- Bringing cash to a Norwood Bank or Bank of Canton branch and having a check made out to the Town of Norwood. Then drop off or mail the check to Town Hall, 566 Washington St., Norwood, MA 02062
- Donating online here. Click on the “Cable, Excise Tax, Property Tax, and Utility Bills” link. Then, on the left side of the page, click on “COVID-19 DONATIONS”.
Donations will be distributed evenly between the four funds as needed to ensure one fund area is not left unattended, and 100% of the donations will stay in Norwood.
Even after the COVID-19 emergency, there will still be a need for these funds to assist Norwood residents. Funds will remain in these donation accounts and will only be used for the purpose of helping Norwood residents.