Economic Inclusion and Mobility

Stylish woman looking left across the room



Investing in Systems Change

Our communities, particularly our Gateway Cities in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, are facing enormous challenges: the racial wealth gap is widening, economic opportunity is declining, and economic mobility—which has historically been fleeting for communities of color—is stalled. Housing and workforce opportunities are limited, especially for people of color, women, LGBTQ+, Veterans and people with disabilities.

Recognizing the scarcity of resources available and the tremendous work ahead for organizations focused on the critical drivers of Economic Inclusion and Mobility, we have committed a significant portion of our giving to sustain and advance their work. We seek to eliminate inequities in our region by supporting local organizations dedicated to advancing equity and affecting systemic and sustained change. We join a growing number of community partners working toward a vision where society stops perpetuating centuries-old social and economic hierarchies and works toward a vision of a thriving regional economy and community where these hierarchies are dismantled and systems of oppression based on race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, parental income, ZIP code or other elements of difference and resulting disparities are eliminated so that these distinctions are no longer predictors of economic outcomes for our neighbors.


Eastern Bank Foundation graphic: Our Strategy and Focus

We have selected mutually reinforcing strategy areas where the combination of our philanthropy, volunteerism and advocacy can have the greatest impact: 

  • Advancing equity in the small business ecosystem

  • Enriching early childhood development

  • Securing safe and affordable housing

  • Promoting workforce development

  • Innovations in economic inclusion and mobility


Advancing Equity in the Small Business Ecosystem
Foundation for Business Equity

Entrepreneurs and business owners serve as the building blocks for the local economy. Finding ways to support their growth through capacity building, access to capital, and connections for contracts provides opportunity for real economic participation, enabling new wealth and job creation, and a direct correlation to improved community health. We seek to fund organizations that build ecosystems of support for business owners in historically marginalized communities, which we define as including Black, Latinx, Asian, women, LGBTQ+, Veterans and people with disabilities.

Learn about our support in the community:

If your nonprofit organization is advancing equity in the small business ecosystem, we may be able to help.

How to Apply

Click here to return to the Eastern Bank Foundation homepage