New Commonwealth Fund


Since inception, the New Commonwealth Racial Equity and Social Justice Fund has made upwards of 300 grants and partnered with over 150 organizations across Massachusetts.


In our first 3 years we invested over $11M into our 5 pillars.

Youth Development
$ 0 M
Economic Development
$ 0 M
Policing & Criminal Justice Reform
$ 0 M
Health Equity
$ 0 M
Identity & Culture Narrative
$ 0 M

Making An Impact

We believe in supporting and amplifying the impact of leaders who are closest to the challenges brought about by systemic racism—those with proven practices that lead to its disruption. Because we simply cannot wait for these injustices to resolve themselves organically or for systemic racism to die from natural causes.

Case Study: Health Equity

The Reality

In 2011, the gap between severe maternal morbidity rates for Black non-Hispanic and White non-Hispanic birthing people was two-fold and continues to rise.
By 2020, the severe maternal morbidity (SMM) rate for Black non-Hispanic birthing people was 2.5 times higher than that of White non-Hispanic birthing people, indicating a 25% increase in the gap over that time.1
1 Massachusetts Department of Public Health, An Assessment of Severe Maternal Morbidity in Massachusetts – 2011-2020

Our Response

A shift of just 10% of births from hospitals to birth centers would save $1.9 billion annually2, and we know that the majority of births can happen safely outside of hospitals. Out-of-hospital options in eastern MA are limited unless people can afford the out-of-pocket expense which can exceed several thousands of dollars. The Neighborhood Birth Center will create a third option for pregnant people to receive care and give birth in a safe, sanctuary-like space, with highly trained midwives, whose care is covered by insurance (American Association of Birth Centers /
By the close of 2024 The New Commonwealth Fund will have made more than $600,000 worth of committed investment in the opening of the Neighborhood Birth Center in Boston, MA in 2025. This center will be only the second to open in the state of Massachusetts and has its Transfer Agreement with Boston Medical Center.

IMPACT: “NCF is more than a funder of Neighborhood Birth Center, they are true partners in the work to advance reproductive justice. Together, we have ideated, experimented, and conjured community-first strategies. NCF is changing the relationship between “funder” and “grantee” by sharing power and investing in a return to community midwifery.”
Nashira Baril, Executive Director, Neighborhood Birth Center

In the first 5 years, we project that over 800 babies will be born in Neighborhood Birth Center. And over 3,000 people will access NBC’s expert prenatal care, gynecology and family planning care.

2 International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, The Cost of Home Birth In the United States

Case Study: Criminal Justice Reform

The Reality

Black, Latino and Indigenous people are over-incarcerated at rates that obscenely outpace their White and Asian peers and are overrepresented compared to their population as residents.

Comparing Massachusetts’ Resident & Incarcerated Populations

Percentage of state residents, by race or ethnicity, compared to the percentage of people in the state’s prisons in 2021 and in the local jails in 2019, by race or ethnicity. Compared to the total state population, Black and Hispanic people are overrepresented in the incarcerated population, while White & Asian people are underrepresented.

Our Response

NCF has invested $75,000 with the ACLU, $100,000 with the Lawyers for Civil Rights and $110,000 with Justice for Housing, following a collaboration with the Mayor’s Office of Returning Citizens. Most of the organizations we have supported with more than $2M are led by individuals who have been impacted by the very same systems they are working to change.

With more than $300,000 invested in Leon Smith and his leadership of Citizens for Juvenile Justice, NCF President Makeeba McCreary, along with Board of Director and retired NFL player Devin McCourty, co-authored testimony in September of 2023 to support the Raise the Age legislation
to include 18- to 20-year-olds in juvenile jurisdiction.

IMPACT: Since Massachusetts raised the age to include 17-year-olds in the juvenile system in 2013, juvenile crime has declined by 62% in the Commonwealth – outperforming national trends in property and violent crime reductions. The legislation currently under consideration would gradually raise the age of juvenile jurisdiction to incorporate 18, then 19, then 20-year-old youth over a five year period.