Press Release

The Boston Foundation awards LBFE Open Door Grant for programs to relieve isolation and loneliness, January 2021

By Little Brothers - Friends of the ElderlyJanuary 13, 2021


Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly Receives Grant to Relieve Elder Loneliness During Pandemic

The Boston Foundation awards Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly (LBFE) an Open Door Grant renewal to relieve loneliness and isolation through intergenerational programs

BOSTON – Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly announced today it has received a $25,000 grant from the Boston Foundation for intergenerational programs that aim to relieve isolation and loneliness among the elderly, through the Foundation’s Open Door Grants program.
“This grant will allow us to expand tech access and bring college students together with older adults, virtually, to maintain a social network and community engagement during another difficult year ahead,” Nikki Shults, LBFE’s Executive Director said today. “We look forward to building upon our record of creating communities that span generations and cultures over the 41 years to serve older adults in Boston.”
LBFE Boston was founded in 1979 and today serves hundreds of older Bostonians every year. In LBFE’s core program, CitySites, college aged students and residents of public and private senior living communities meet weekly for social activities including arts & crafts, games, language exchange, Bingo, tech cafes, Zoom instructional classes, dance, poetry, conversation and more.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has made programs focused on relieving isolation for older residents even more critical,” said Orlando Watkins, Vice President for Programs at the Boston Foundation. “Little Brothers – Friends of the Elderly has leveraged technology to find innovative ways to connect residents across generations in a safe and valuable effort to keep our community strong in a time of social isolation.”
Open Door Grants are competitive grants designed for organizations whose proposal is focused on Greater Boston and whose values align with those of the Boston Foundation. Grants are awarded twice each year, and are selected by staff and community reviewers through an inclusive evaluation process. Funds for Open Door Grants come from the Boston Foundation’s Permanent Fund for Boston, Greater Boston’s only endowed fund focusing on the pressing needs of Greater Boston, supplemented by other Foundation funds as available. The Permanent Fund has been made possible by more than a century of gifts from those who seek to support innovative solutions to the region’s most pressing problems since 1915.
Little Brothers-Friends of the Elderly, Boston Chapter (LBFE – Boston)
LBFE — Boston was founded in 1979 as part of a national network of non-profit volunteer-based organizations committed to relieving isolation and loneliness among the elderly in Greater Boston. Our motto, flowers before bread, reflects our belief that living is more than a roof over our heads and food on the table, but also the presence of people who care. LBFE Boston hosts intergenerational social activities and visiting programs to nearly1000 elders every year. Priority is given to those living in senior housing at, or below the poverty line, without charge and without regard to race, gender, creed, nationality, or sexual orientation. LBFE – Boston is a 501(c)(3) operating with the support of individual donors, volunteers and foundation or corporate assistance. For more information, visit .
The Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, brings people and resources together to solve Boston’s big problems. Established in 1915, it is one of the largest community foundations in the nation—with net assets of $1.3 billion. In 2020, the Foundation and its donors paid $215 million in grants to nonprofit organizations. The Foundation works in close partnership with its donors, with more than 1,000 separate charitable funds established for the general benefit of the community or for special purposes. It also serves as a major civic leader, think tank and advocacy organization, commissioning research into the most critical issues of our time and helping to shape public policy designed to advance opportunity for everyone in Greater Boston.
The Philanthropic Initiative (TPI), a consulting unit of the Foundation, designs and implements customized philanthropic strategies for families, foundations and corporations around the globe.
For more information about the Boston Foundation and TPI, visit or call 617-338-1700