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Vienna Mental Health Nonprofit Walks Off with MLB Grant

The Women’s Center in Vienna will be able to continue providing critical mental health services for the foreseeable future, thanks to a $50,000 donation from Major League Baseball.

Located on Park Street with a second facility in Washington, D.C., the nonprofit announced today (Wednesday) that it is one of 11 organizations to receive a Healthy Relationships Community Grant from MLB and the MLB Players Association as part of a philanthropic initiative that the professional sports league and players’ union launched at the beginning of 2020.

“We are very grateful to be partnering with MLB and MLBPA for the first time, especially during such a tumultuous time,” The Women’s Center CEO and Executive Director Rachna Singal Krishnan said.

Founded in 1974, The Women’s Center offers mental health counseling, supports for domestic violence and sexual assault survivors, clinical training, and education and career services to over 1,600 low-income, uninsured people in the D.C. metropolitan region annually.

On its website, The Center says it relies on philanthropic support in order to provide subsidized and free services to the community. Its mental health services are also partly funded by Fairfax County, and it is a co-founder and member of the Fairfax County Domestic Violence Action Center.

The MLB and MLBPA grant will help The Center make up for revenue lost from other funding areas, Singal Krishnan says.

“This $50,000 award has made it possible for us to continue to operate at full capacity this year and provide life-saving services to people who have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic,” The Women’s Center communications specialist Rebecca Ballinger said.

MLB and the players’ association started the Healthy Relationships Community Grants initiative “to address positive relationship health” with a focus on nonprofit programs that address mental health resiliency among vulnerable populations, youth relationship skills, and domestic violence, according to MLB.

For the initiative, MLB and MLBPA have committed to allocating $3 million to U.S. nonprofits and global non-governmental organizations across 2020 and 2021. Grants are given out on a quarterly cycle with a maximum award of $50,000.

So far, the initiative has distributed a total of $1.5 million to 32 organizations around the U.S., according to a press release from The Women’s Center.

The 11 grant recipients for the third quarter of 2020 also includes the Oakton-based Northern Virginia Family Service, which provides assistance with basic needs like housing, food, and healthcare. NVFS specifically received the grant for its multicultural mental health services.

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