Supporting Neighborhoods

Investing Resources

About Us: Mission

The Boston Main Streets Foundation is committed to making Boston's neighborhood commercial districts thriving, vibrant centers of commerce and community through its support of the Boston Main Streets program. The Boston Main Streets Foundation seeks to develop long-term strategies to increase the economic power and resources of neighborhood commercial districts while pursuing initiatives that build knowledge and capacity for Main Streets programs and the businesses they serve.

Boston Main Streets Foundation will:

  • Raise corporate, private, public, and foundation support and awareness
  • Develop renewable income streams for local Boston Main Streets organizations
  • Provide funding opportunities to each Boston Main Streets districts.


History

Boston Main Streets a public-private initiative established by the City of Boston in 1995, has been the driving force behind the revitalization of the City's neighborhood commercial districts. The individual neighborhood Main Streets organizations follow a comprehensive approach developed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation's Main Street Center to providing merchants and community residents with the tools and information necessary for their commercial center to compete in today's marketplace.

These organizations are responsible for beautifying the districts, recruiting new businesses, retaining and strengthening existing businesses, and drawing people into the districts to shop and recreate. Boston Main Streets has become a national model and was chosen by the Pew Partnership for Civic Change as one of "19 Solutions for America.."

Each neighborhood Main Streets organization is a small, independent non-profit, with one full-time staff person. They rely heavily upon their volunteer boards of directors and committees. The long-term sustainability of the individual programs is contingent upon establishing more effective fundraising. The Boston Main Streets Foundation was established as a 501(c)3 organization to support the very important work of the individual neighborhood Main Streets organizations.

Just as a shopping mall needs on-going strong management, we need to be vigilant in making sure our neighborhood commercial districts continue to be cared for. That is why the Boston Main Streets Foundation was launched.