Catalyst Fund Awards Grants

September 28, 2020 (New Britain, Conn.) – On Tuesday, September 22, The Catalyst Giving Circle at the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain awarded five grants to local nonprofits.

The Catalyst Fund is comprised of a group of community-minded citizens interested in improving the quality of life in Greater New Britain. Members collectively make a gift to the Catalyst fund. They then gather three times a year to learn about a member-chosen issue facing the community, and to consider funding requests from charitable organizations addressing the issue. The year concludes with a grant award to a nonprofit organization.

This year, the topic of focus was small to mid-size arts organizations affected by COVID-19. The impact of the pandemic on arts and cultural organizations has been devastating and millions of dollars have been lost in revenue from events, programs, and fundraising. The Catalyst grants focused on helping organizations to adapt their business models and practices in order to continue successful operations in the current climate.

Due to the nature of Catalyst meetings being in-person, the first meeting of the year was held virtually to discuss this year’s topic. On Tuesday, a very generous anonymous donor sponsored the meeting held at the outdoor pavilion of Tunxis Country Club in Farmington. The meeting followed all social distancing guidelines and the amount of in-person support was overwhelming.

The membership voted to award five grants to local nonprofits including:

  • $1,864 to the Art League of New Britain for a virtual figure drawing class to enhance their online gallery exhibit,
  • $3,000 to CONCORA for PPE and barriers needed for “Virtual CONCORA”,
  • $3,000 to CT Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra for equipment needed for live streaming and virtual programming,
  • $1,500 to New Britain Symphony to cover the cost to live stream the Young People’s concert scheduled for April 2021, and
  • $2,500 to New Britain Youth Museum to create virtual educational programs.

In total, the Catalyst Fund granted $11,864 to local nonprofits.

“We are grateful to our Catalyst membership for not only committing to the mission of the Foundation and continuing to benefit our community year after year, but also for adjusting their normal grant process so that more than one organization can benefit from the grants funds available through the Catalyst giving circle,” says David Obedzinski, President of the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain.

Anyone can become a member of Catalyst. A “Discovery” membership is available for first-time members (and their families) for a gift of $50, a “Business” membership offers local businesses the opportunity to engage their employees in local philanthropy.  Regular annual membership in the Catalyst Fund is a gift of $250 per voting unit, which can be an individual, couple, group or family. For information on joining Catalyst, contact Joeline Wruck at or 860-229-6018, ext. 307.

Established in 1941, the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain is “Where Good Begins” in Berlin, New Britain, Plainville and Southington. Located at The Foundation Center at 74A Vine Street, New Britain, the Foundation works to inspire philanthropy, responsibly manage permanent charitable assets, and partner to address key community issues through strategic leadership. For more information, visit