Statements & Press Releases

Statements & Press Releases

Statements Press Release

18 New England Non-Profits Win Red Sox Foundation and Ruderman Family Foundation Grants Addressing the Mental Health Crisis 

June 19, 2023

IMPACT Awards support organizations that have demonstrated a deep impact in raising awareness and improving mental health outcomes in their community.

BOSTON, MA, June 14, 2023 — The Red Sox Foundation tonight honored 18 non-profits across six states in New England as the winners of the 9th Annual IMPACT Awards, presented for the fourth time by the Ruderman Family Foundation. The awards focus on organizations that have demonstrated a deep impact in raising awareness and improving mental health outcomes in their community — an issue that has become increasingly prominent and urgent nationwide amid the mental health crisis brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath. 


The IMPACT Awards give Red Sox fans the opportunity to nominate their favorite non-profits to receive support and funding, and then to vote for the five finalists in each New England state from May 2 – May 31. More than half of this year’s nominees were first-time finalists. 


Through a grant from the Ruderman Family Foundation, the awards provide the winning non-profits with either a first-place $10,000 grant, second-place $3,000 grant, or a third-place $2,000 grant. Eligible organizations with the most online votes from fans were the designated winners, with three non-profits selected from each New England state. The 2023 winners were as follows: 


  • Connecticut: AHM Youth and Family Services (first place); BHcare (second place); Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement (third place) 
  • Maine: The Center for Grieving Children (first place); Aroostook Mental Health Services (second place); My Place Teen Center (third place) 
  • Massachusetts: Hope Floats Healing & Wellness Center (first place); Wildflower, Inc. (second place); Bridge Over Troubled Waters (third place) 
  • New Hampshire: Connor’s Climb Foundation (first place); NAMI New Hampshire (second place); Granite State Children’s Alliance (third place) 
  • Rhode Island: FRIENDS WAY (first place); St. Mary’s Home for Children (second place); WARM Center, Inc. (third place) 
  • Vermont: Jenna’s Promise (first place); Grace Cottage Hospital (second place); Green Mountain Mobile Therapy (third place) 


The winners were recognized in a pregame ceremony at Fenway Park on Wednesday night, receiving their awards on the field alongside Ruderman Family Foundation Executive Director Shira Ruderman, and Boston Red Sox Executive Vice President of Social Impact and Red Sox Foundation Executive Director Bekah Salwasser. 


“We were honored to once again partner with the Red Sox Foundation in recognizing and supporting the organizations that are working on the front lines across this region on the urgent priority of improving mental health outcomes, ensuring that New Englanders receive the services and care they need,” says Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “If the experiences of recent years have taught us anything about mental health, it is that the rising challenges surrounding this issue are not going away anytime soon. We must all continue to do our part to end the stigma around mental health.” 


“In our fourth year of partnership, we are deeply proud to work alongside the Ruderman Family Foundation to support, recognize and empower nonprofits in our communities that are strengthening outcomes in mental health,” says Salwasser. “It’s important for our two foundations to use our platforms and continue having open dialogue about mental health as we work towards breaking the stigma associated with such an important topic that impacts all of us each and every day.  On behalf of our entire organization, we congratulate this year’s recipients of the IMPACT Awards and share our deepest gratitude to them for being champions in this space.” 


Further, during the IMPACT Awards voting period, the Red Sox Foundation and Ruderman Family Foundation released a public service announcement from Red Sox Manager Alex Cora in order to raise awareness around the need to end the stigma associated with mental health. Cora’s PSA builds on the Ruderman Family Foundation’s history of working to counter the stigma by amplifying messages from public figures who proceed to disseminate them among broad audiences, including actors Selena Gomez and Taraji P. Henson as well as athletes Michael Phelps and Kevin Love, recipients of the Foundation’s annual Morton E. Ruderman Award in Inclusion.  


“Mental health impacts all of us in some way,” Cora says in the PSA. “On and off the field, we cannot shy away from having real conversations about this topic. Together, we can end the stigma around mental health, and increase the number of lives and communities saved. If you, or someone you know, is struggling with mental health, the Boston Red Sox and the Ruderman Family Foundation encourage you to seek out the care you need. Red Sox Nation is one team, and just as you support us, we support you.” 


For all press inquiries, please contact: 

James Fattal, J Cubed Communications 



About Ruderman Family Foundation 


The Ruderman Family Foundation is an internationally recognized organization that works to end the stigma associated with mental health. The Foundation does this by identifying gaps in mental health resources and programs within the high school and higher education communities as well as by organizing other local and national programming and initiatives that raise greater awareness around the stigma.  


The Ruderman Family Foundation believes that inclusion and understanding of all people is essential to a fair and flourishing community and imposes these values within its leadership and funding. For more information, please visit 


About the Red Sox Foundation 


The official team charity of the Boston Red Sox, the Red Sox Foundation has awarded more than 5,000 grants since its creation in 2002 and focuses on making a difference in the lives of children, families, Veterans, and communities in need by improving their health, education, and recreational opportunities. Through partnerships with best-in-class organizations in healthcare, the Red Sox have helped raised over $162 million for cancer treatment and research for The Jimmy Fund, supported more than 30,000 Veterans and their families suffering from the “invisible wounds of war” with the Home Base Program, and helped the Dimock Center serve over 20,000 patients annually with health and human services. The Foundation’s self-run education and youth baseball programs have helped 349 Boston Public Schools students with college scholarships and promotes healthy choices and valuable life skills to more than 2,000 urban youth annually through its RBI baseball and softball program. 


A 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the Red Sox Foundation raises funds through special events, corporate sponsorships, and grants. Founded and initially funded by Red Sox Principal Owner John Henry, Chairman Tom Werner, President/CEO Emeritus Larry Lucchino and their partners, the Red Sox Foundation has won numerous awards for the impact of its innovative programs. In 2010, the Foundation’s Red Sox Scholars program was recognized by Major League Baseball with the first-ever “MLB Commissioner’s Award for Philanthropic Excellence.” In 2009, the Red Sox Foundation was honored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Sports Philanthropy Project with the Patterson Award as the nation’s “Best Team Charity in Sports.” For more information about the foundation, visit 


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