GoodWorks Insurance donates

$10,000 to Community

Health Programs

By Derek Gentile, Berkshire Eagle Staff

goodworks

Internal medicine resident Amanda Staples listens to patient Kimberly Gasperini as she treats her bee sting last summer at Community Health Programs in Great Barrington. CHP has received $10,000 from GoodWorks Insurance.
(Eagle file photo)

GREAT BARRINGTON — A local insurance company has stepped in to provide some of the funds lost to the nonprofit Community Health Programs in the wake of recent federal budget cuts.

GoodWorks Insurance, a full-service independent insurance company with offices on Main Street, several towns in Connecticut and in Worcester, recently presented CHP with a check for $10,000.

In addition, Chad Yonker, the chairman of GoodWorks, said the company will match any additional local donations up to $5,000 in addition to the gift.

Yonker said that while GoodWorks was proud to support Community Health Programs, “we recognize that more support will be needed to continue their level of service.”

He invited other local companies to add their support to that of GoodWorks, which was founded several years ago in Great Barrington.

Brian Ayars, CEO of CHP, said the pending cuts, mandated by the recent government budget stalemate known as sequestration, will mean a reduction of about $10,000 each month in federal funding to his company.

The former Children’s Heath Program expanded into the Community Health Programs in 2000. The organization provides medical, dental and other support services for about 20,000 area residents. CHP provides services for the uninsured, as well as patients with Medicaid, Medicare and about 100 other commercial insurance plans.

Most of the organization’s funding comes through the government, with less than 2 percent from private donations.

“Like any individual or family, we have expenses to pay,” said Ayars. “We are grateful for GoodWorks’ support.”

Ayars pointed out that CHP’s administrative overhead is about 4.6 percent of its annual $10 million budget.

“By nonprofit standards, that’s a pretty lean figure,” he said of the administrative costs. “So any reduction in our budget is a reduction in services.”

GoodWorks Vice President Nat Worden said the company annually donates 50 percent of its overall profits to local companies that support educational, health or area safety programs.

“It’s part of our business model to support local nonprofits,” he said.

To reach Derek Gentile:
dgentile@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6251.
On Twitter: @DerekGentile

How to help …

Local nonprofits that would like to apply to GoodWorks for a grant can email Nat Worden at nworden@goodworksinsurance.com or call him during office hours at 1-860-633-0241, ext. 117.