The Early Years: A Social Justice Movement Takes Root
Lowell CHC employees during the early years (top) and an artist rendering of the Shaughnessy Terrace public housing complex, site of our first clinic in 1970 (bottom).

It all began with a bold idea.

That everyone deserved access to quality health care.

Your community health center is rooted in the belief that everyone in Greater Lowell deserves access to quality, affordable health care. 

In 1965,  the national community health center movement launched as part of President Johnson's War on Poverty. The first two CHC's were located in Boston's Columbia Point neighborhood and in rural Mississippi.

This was thanks, in large part, to the efforts of Dr. H Jack Geiger, a pioneering physician who traveled the world advocating for issues related to human rights, health, and discrimination. Dr. Geiger modeled the health center movement in the U.S. on community-based health initiatives he'd seen while visiting South Africa.

Planting the seed in Lowell
In 1970, the movement came to Lowell. That was when  Lowell General Hospital (LGH) established a small, community-based clinic in an apartment at the 
Shaughnessy Terrace public housing  complex. The clinic focused on prenatal and pediatric care, all easily accessible to residents.

That model proved successful. Additional clinics soon followed in neighborhoods throughout the City, staffed by providers from LGH and supported by the extensive outreach efforts of residents and Lowell Visiting Nurses.

"I look back and say, 'Wow, look at what this has become!'"
-Joan Bennett, first Lowell CHC employee, hired fresh out of college to staff and manage the Shaughnessy Terrace clinic back in 1970

The need is great. We can't do it without you.
From one small apartment to 165,000 sq. ft. of rehabilitated mill space on Jackson Street, we've come a long way over the last 50 years - thanks to you!

So much has changed, but our promise to you, and to our community, has never wavered: to make sure everyone in Greater Lowell has access to healthcare, regardless of ability to pay. 

As our community has grown, so has the need. Next year, we are poised to serve more than 35,000 patients and thousands more through our community outreach programs.

So that we never have to say no to families and our community, we hope you will consider a gift to the WrapAround Fund , which pays for services not covered by insurance.   

Thank You for Caring for Lowell!  

Keep the Movement Alive


Your gift to the WrapAround Fund will help pay for vital services that aren't covered
by insurance, including:

- Health insurance counseling

- Medical interpreters

- Referrals to housing and food assistance

- Health screenings in community settings

- And so much more...


Since 1970, Lowell Community Health Center has proudly provided access to high quality,
affordable health care to children and adults of all ages - regardless of their ability to pay.

We are committed to delivering exceptional, culturally responsive care that improves
the  health of the patients we serve through prevention, treatment  and education.