Wentworth Distributing Supermarket Gift Cards to Neighbors

April 24, 2020

a street sign

Wentworth has been working to provide some extra help to residents of Mission Hill and other surrounding neighborhoods. (Photo by Maynard Clark)

By John Franklin

With people out of work and struggling financially due to the coronavirus outbreak, Johanna Sena, director for community and government relations at Wentworth, started an initiative to make things a little easier for our neighbors.

Sena’s office has been purchasing Stop & Shop gift cards and distributing them to people in Wentworth’s surrounding communities. It’s something that she wants to keep doing as we strive to reach an end to the pandemic.

“I reached out to some of our key partners in the neighborhood asking what I can help with, and if grocery store gift cards would be beneficial,” she said. “We have distributed 60 gift cards to five partners, and we plan to do more as this goes on.”

The act is something that Sena cares deeply about on more than one level. As a wife and mother, she knows what it’s like to take care of a family during these times and wants to help fellow Mission Hill residents in any way possible.

It’s not the only thing that Wentworth and neighboring groups are doing to help. MassArt, Wentworth, the Museum of Fine Arts, the Winsor School, Emmanuel College, Harvard Medical School, Simmons University and Boston Latin School have made over 1,100 parking spaces available for healthcare workers in the Longwood Medical Area.

Sena believes that the surrounding community helps Wentworth thrive. By helping each other, we all grow and become one great society.

“Ensuring that our neighbors are safe and well is something I care about personally and professionally. If the community around us is doing well… it is really beneficial to all of us,” she said.

The response has been extremely positive, according to Sena, she wants to continue to find ways to help those in need.

“People have been very grateful, but I wish we could do more,” Sena said. “The initial amount is so small, but I know it’s meaningful to have any help you can get. We even got a shoutout on Facebook by the woman who runs the local CDC. We plan to keep this rolling as much as we can.”

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