The Community Mediation Center Grant Program, funded by the commonwealth and administered by the state’s office of dispute resolution, was established to “promote the broad use of community mediation in all regions of the state” by awarding operating grants to eligible community mediation centers. This annual report describes the progress made in broadening access to community mediation by the grant program under the challenge of reduced state funding in FY 2014. Due to the funding cut, fewer centers were funded in FY 2014 compared to FY 2013, which reduced the quantity of services provided. However, the amount of money per grant was maintained thereby enabling the 14 funded centers to preserve their level of productivity and maintain their operations. These centers served their communities by providing mediation services to help settle disputes, contributed to the growth of social capacity for conflict resolution in their communities, and engaged in efforts to raise public awareness of community mediation as an alternative approach to resolving conflict. To achieve long-term sustainability and to broaden access to community mediation across the state, however, further effort is needed from community mediation centers and the CMC Grant Program, which in turn, requires continued and increased state funding and support.
Jeghelian, S. M., Palihapitiya, M., & Eisenkraft, K. O. (2014, December 31). Massachusetts Community Mediation Center Grant Program: Fiscal Year 2014 Report & Evaluation. Boston, MA: Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration, University of Massachusetts Boston