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COVID-19 Response Fund
A collaborative, community response to deploy resources to local nonprofit organizations
The Omaha Community Foundation launched the COVID-19 Response Fund to provide flexible resources to organizations in the metro area working with communities who are disproportionately impacted by coronavirus and the economic consequences of this outbreak. Any individual can donate to the fund online.
Supporting Nonprofits That Serve the Most Vulnerable
While our healthcare systems, public health practitioners, and local universities are doing everything in their power to slow the spread of coronavirus, our local nonprofits are assisting those most vulnerable during this unprecedented time.
The COVID-19 Response Fund makes grants to organizations that have deep roots in the community and strong experience working with residents without health insurance and/or access to sick days, people with limited English language proficiency, healthcare, and low-wage workers, and communities of color, among others.
To date, the Response Fund has raised more than $1.3million from over 6,000 community members and distributed $1.2million to support 51 local nonprofits addressing urgent needs.
In March, a first round of grants supported nonprofits addressing the immediate economic and health impacts of the pandemic. In April, the Fund augmented those initial investments with an additional grants for mounting food insecurity and housing stability. In the next rounds, we focused on immigrant and refugee communities with emergency financial assistance. In future phases, the Fund will continue to adapt to urgent and emerging needs as they evolve.
In June, we are pausing on distributing grants while we renew our fundraising efforts and assess ongoing needs. We will continue to receive updates on unfolding need from our initial partners. And we will continue to adapt and respond to this unprecedented need.
Once our community navigates this initial outbreak and response, we will eventually turn to recovery. While we cannot predict exactly when that will be, we are focusing on building stability for vulnerable residents and the nonprofits that serve them beyond this crisis.
The following areas of need are the focus of this fund. We are working with several local partners across sectors to understand how organizations are providing these important safety nets to those most vulnerable in the metro area.
Food Support: With school closings, many school age community members are missing out on essential meals for the day. Additionally, low wage and/or hourly workers may further struggle to access to food.
Healthcare: Healthcare organizations will be handling cases of the virus, while also caring for those in our most vulnerable populations.
Emergency Housing: These service providers need to stay open and take extra measures to ensure their client’s safety during this unprecedented time.
Emergency Financial Assistance: Families and individuals may struggle with rent, mortgage, or utilities due to job loss or loss of wages.
Seniors: Seniors are among the most affected by the virus, but will also have less access to needed medication and food as a result of community-wide social distancing strategies.
To date the Response Fund has given grants to the following nonprofits:
EMERGENCY HOUSING – $114,500
- Generation Diamond
- New Visions Homeless Services
FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE – $501,400
- 100 Black Men
- Benson Area Refugee Taskforce
- Bethlehem House
- Black and Pink
- Centro Latino of Iowa
- Ethiopian Community Association
- Habitat for Humanity
- Heartland Family Service
- Holy Name Housing
- I Be Black Girl
- International Council for Refugees & Immigrants
- Lending Link
- Nebraska AIDS Project
- Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
- Nebraska Kidney Association
- New Life Family Alliance
- Refugee Empowerment Center
- Restoring Dignity
SENIORS – $85,000
- Intercultural Senior Center
- Midwest Geriatric
- Nebraska Urban Indian Health Coalition
FOOD SECURITY – $244,200
- Black Men United
- Compassion in Action
- Food Bank of the Heartland
- Heart Ministry Center
- Heartland United for Puerto Rico
- Life House
- Mission Church
- No More Empty Pots
- North Omaha Neighborhood Association Simple Foundation
- Together, Inc
HEALTHCARE – $264,000
- All Care Health Center
- Center for Holistic Development
- Charles Drew Health Center
- Completely Kids
- Families in Action
- Grief’s Journey
- Heartland Workers Center
- Lutheran Family Services
- Nebraska Early Childhood Collaborative
- North Omaha Area Health
- One World Community Health Centers Project Harmony
- Visiting Nurses Association
Our partners at the United Way of the Midlands are working diligently to connect people in need with help. If you are looking for immediate assistance in finding a food pantry, paying a utility bill, accessing safe housing or shelter, receiving counseling services and more, 211 is available 24/7 by phone or text. Additional information can be found on the 211 website.
You can keep up with the latest COVID-19 Response Fund news on our blog.