Center for Community Engagement

Pioneer Valley Organizations

The Center for Community Engagement sustains mututally-beneficial partnerships with a number of local organizations throughout the academic year and summer. Browse the list below to learn more about each organization.

Organizations denoted with an asterisk (*) are our educational community partners. Organizations denoted with a plus sign (+) are internship host organizations during Pioneer Valley Citizen Summer.

Amherst Regional Public Schools Athletic Partnership

The Amherst Regional Public Schools (ARPS) Athletic Partnership program facilitates connections between Amherst College students and athletic programs at ARPS. Amherst College will work with ARPS to identify their needs and then look for students who are able to assist in those areas or initiatives.

Agape Community

The Agape Community is a lay Catholic residential community, ecumenical and interfaith in outreach and practice, with a focus on daily prayer, evangelical simplicity and nonviolent witness in the world.

Amherst Business District+

The Amherst Business Improvement District is a nonprofit economic development organization comprised of local property owners dedicated to providing programs and services that serve the town’s residents and businesses.

Amherst Cinema

Amherst Cinema inspires, informs and entertains through the universal language of cinema arts and to serve as a cultural and educational resource for all.

Amherst Media+

Amherst Media is a dynamic, community driven, non-profit, public access information, communication and technology center.

Amherst Survival Center+

The Amherst Survival Center promotes the health and well being of residents of Franklin and Hampshire counties with a wide variety of programs designed to help people meet their basic needs. The ASC provides a welcoming community where families and individuals who are struggling to make ends meet can come for food, clothing, health care and for companionship and relief from isolation.

El Arco Iris Tutoring Program*

El Arco Iris is an after-school program committed to fostering and enriching the talents, skills, and attitudes of Holyoke youth so that they can thrive intellectually and better impact their communities.

A Better Chance Amherst*

A Better Chance Amherst (ABC) is a national residential high school program which prepares academically talented and highly motivated African American, Latino, Asian, and Native American students from educationally underserved school districts for college and future leadership roles in the broader community. Since the program began, over 100 students have attended Amherst Regional High School which offers a rich college preparatory curriculum and a diverse array of extracurricular and sports activities.

Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Hampshire County*+

Big Brothers Big Sisters matches volunteers with children who need another positive adult role model in their lives. BBBS is a leader in youth service which focuses on developing positive one-on-one relationships between mentors of all walks of life and children ages 6 to 18 all over the US.

Book and Plow Farm+

Book and Plow Farm strives to sustain and nourish the academic community by growing high quality produce, to act as an educational resource, and to act in the best interest of the natural ecosystem and replenish the soil for long term sustainability.

Bridging the Gap+

Bridging the Gap is a twelve week life skills program for at-risk and high-risk youth ages 12-18 years old.

City of Holyoke Mayor’s Office+

In 2012, Mayor Alex B. Morse was sworn in as Holyoke's youngest mayor at the age of 22. During his first term, Mayor Morse has prioritized economic development, literacy, and public safety.

Center for New Americans+

The Center for New Americans provides the underserved immigrant, refugee and migrant communities of Massachusetts' Pioneer Valley with education and resources to learn English, become involved community members, and obtain tools necessary to maintain economic independence and stability.


Connections is an indisciplinary after-school program at EN White Elementary School in Holyoke for students in second through fifth grades.

Empowerment Through The Arts International

Empowerment Through The Arts International is a creative partnership of individuals, human service agencies, artists, therapists and arts organizations dedicated to creating inclusive programming and arts opportunities for the enrichment and empowerment of individuals labeled as “developmentally disabled."

Enlace de Familias+

Enlace De Familias is a non-profit organization located in Holyoke, Massachusetts provides programming and resources to help strengthen the community and help families build their lives in confidence and with hope.

The Food Bank of Western MA

The mission of The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts is to work with our community to reduce hunger and increase food security. In Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire Counties in western Massachusetts, approximately one in every eight people suffers from chronic food shortages or needs emergency food assistance.

Girls Incorporated of Holyoke*+

Girls Incorporated of Holyoke inspires all girls to be strong, smart and bold by providing them the opportunity to develop and achieve their full potential.

Hitchcock Center for the Environment

The Hitchcock Center for the Environment is an independent nonprofit organization whose mission is to foster a greater awareness and understanding of our environment and to develop environmentally literate citizens.

Horizons for Homeless Children

Horizons for Homeless Children is the only organization in Massachusetts focused exclusively on the needs of young homeless children and their families. We provide high-quality early education, opportunities for play, and family engagement services to more than 3,000 homeless children each week in Massachusetts.

Jones Library ESL Center

The Jones Library ESL Center is an award-winning program providing volunteer tutors, tutoring space, study materials, computer-assisted instruction, citizenship classes, English classes and referrals to adult immigrants in the Amherst area.

The Kestrel Trust

Kestrel Land Trust is dedicated to conserving the land that sustains the quality of life and ecological integrity of the Connecticut River Valley.

The League of Women Voters

The League of Women Voters is a citizens’ organization that has fought since 1920 to improve our government and engage all citizens in the decisions that impact their lives.

Let's Get Ready

Let's Get Ready provides low-income high school students with free SAT preparation, admissions counseling and other support services needed to gain admission to and graduate from college. Trained college student volunteers deliver these services and offer encouragement, inspiration and confidence.

The Literacy Project

The Literacy Project offers free classes to adults in Western Massachusetts in beginning literacy as well as GED preparation. We offer small, comfortable classes in locations throughout Franklin, Hampshire, and western Worcester Counties.


MotherWoman supports and empowers mothers to create positive personal and social change by building community safety nets, impacting family policy and promoting the leadership and resilience of mothers.

Neighbor to Neighbor Massachusetts+

Neighbor to Neighbor Massachusetts is a progressive organization of working class, multi-racial, and multi-ethnic people working together to build political and economic power to improve the quality of life in our communities.

Not Bread Alone

Not Bread Alone is a community meal program that offers free homemade hot meals and groceries to anyone in need. Not Bread Alone is open for three meals a week and on Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving and Christmas in the lower level dining room of the First Congregational Church in Amherst, 165 Main St., Amherst.

Paulo Freire Social Justice Charter School+

The Paulo Freire Social Justice Charter School is a public high school preparing students for college success while inspiring them to be active and effective citizens.

Reader to Reader

Reader to Reader, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) public charity dedicated to bringing books, free of charge, to under-resourced school libraries and public libraries across the United States.

Simple Gifts Farm+

The mission of Simple Gifts Farm is to grow beautiful and delicious organically-grown produce and raise grass-fed meat for people living in, working in, and visiting Amherst, Massachusetts.

The Springfield Institute

The Springfield Institute is a think tank with a twist: a central commitment to outreach, inclusion, and community organizing. We help organizations implement innovative and transformative projects through capacity building, analysis, strategic communications and planning with broad community participation.


TRU2U is a new kind of integrated communications agency. The marketing models deployed by most companies today are insincere, unauthentic, expensive, noisy and outdated for the world we live in. In fact, we see the truth as the greatest asset a brand can have - so long as that truth is about doing good.

The Trustees of Reservations+

The Trustees of Reservations preserve, for public use and enjoyment, properties of exceptional scenic, historic, and ecological value in Massachusetts.

Vela Scholars*

The Vela Scholars program is a year-round partnership between Amherst College and Amherst Regional Middle School designed to help students "rise and grow" to their full potential. During the school year, Amherst students mentor and teach middle school students as an after-school teaching program. During the summer, students spend three weeks in an intensive teaching program.

Youth Action Coalition+

Youth Action Coalition promotes youth empowerment through creative expression and social action projects. YAC’s core program, Arts-for-Change, is a series of distinct arts and media projects that pairs intensive arts immersion with social justice education.