The legacy of St. Francis of Assisi permeates the air at St. Francis House. There, staff and volunteers work to emulate the devotion he showed people throughout his life by assisting people who are underserved or experiencing homelessness. They provide support and care for all of their guests in the form of basic necessities, such as food, clothing, showers, and medical care, as well as guidance services.
Every day, more than 800 men and women seek aid at St. Francis House and take part in its counseling and rehabilitation services. The counseling department provides individual therapy, legal aid, and immigration services, whereas the rehabilitation services help people overcome challenges stemming from mental illness and substance abuse. To propel its guests into self-sufficiency, St. Francis House also offers a 14-week job- and life-skills training program to help individuals who have dealt with drug addiction, homelessness, mental illness, or incarceration find careers.
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Founded in 1980 as an advocacy and support organization, The Boston Alliance of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Youth (BAGLY) has always been on the forefront of issues facing young queer people. Such is its commitment to young LGBTQ voices that its leadership is made up of young people, with adults serving as advisors.
BAGLY's work is twofold. First, it educates and supports its young members, all of whom are 22 years old or younger. At its newly renovated center, young people can receive health education and care, get school and GED help, search for jobs, and join support groups that provide a safe space to discuss myriad issues facing LGBTQ youth. But BAGLY isn't just focused on serious subjects?it's also home to the nation's first prom for young LGBTQ people. The 2009 dance became the organization's most attended event, with more than 1,700 people celebrating at Boston City Hall.
Additionally, BAGLY advocates for queer rights, which have included pressuring the City of Boston to issue a permit for the Pride Day Parade and getting the term sexual orientation added to the Massachusetts Students? Rights Law. BAGLY also educates people outside its doors, including starting the first LGBTQ youth speakers series in public schools and being among the first to discuss issues facing transgender youth with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
PetPals has worked with 34 long-term care facilities in Brookline and Boston, reaching more than 650 residents since 2003. A veterinary behaviorist carefully screens cat and dog volunteers before they can begin visits, and the program trains both pets and their owners on how to interact with the residents to optimize experiences for everyone involved.
It only makes sense that the auto detailers at Car Care are as mobile as the vehicles that they work on. Stocked with cleaning gear, their service vans travel around the Boston area before stopping at offices and homes. There, the detailers wash car exteriors by hand and venture inside to sweep, scrub, and condition all surfaces, including leather seats and miniature dance floors. Alternatively, the team also works out of four service locations. At these brick-and-mortar spots, the team replaces windshields, removes scratches, and executes all manner of auto body repair.
With multiple locations as well as mobile scanning units, the Animal Rescue League rescues and cares for lost or stray pets with medicine, food, and shelter until owners can be located through the information provided on the animal's microchip. The organization also takes in and scans animals brought in by law enforcement as well as other shelters and rescue programs. As a nonprofit organization, the Animal Rescue League of Boston has only been able to purchase one microchip scanner. With a high volume of intakes and multiple intake locations, animal rescuers frequently face delays in the provision of health and placement services as a result of the equipment shortage. Additional microchip scanners would allow the Animal Rescue League to facilitate more prompt medical and behavioral evaluations, reunions, and adoptions.
New Generation Energy strives to make communities nationwide healthier and more sustainable by funding energy-efficiency projects for other nonprofits. Because these nonprofits—including schools, shelters, libraries, and community centers—must focus efforts on their particular missions, resources for energy-efficiency projects are scarce. New Generation Energy hosts online donation events, provides matching funds, and offers marketing support to help partnering organizations fund their green projects and achieve goals.