The Omaha Community Foundation is pleased to announce another round of Community Resilience Fund grant recipients. Nine local nonprofits, serving those disproportionately affected by COVID-19, received funds totaling $98,352.

Launched in April 2021, the Community Resilience Fund focuses on providing grants in the following areas: arts and culture, housing, learning recovery, mental health, and workforce.

Since then, 21 nonprofits have received a total of $285,090.75, thanks to generous community support. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis to meet ongoing efforts to recover and rebuild from social, health, and economic impacts of the pandemic.

Anyone can donate.

Grants Made in July 2021

ARTS & CULTURE: Alleviating operational uncertainty until organizations can fully reopen and restabilize earned revenue through programs, performances, and exhibits.

> Rose Theater: $10,000 for Alternative Curriculum Program Arts Education Pilot. The Rose Theater seeks to pilot a new facet of the Every Single Child Program during the 2021-2022 school year. This pilot will serve 150 students in eight classrooms in the Omaha Public Schools’ Alternative Curriculum Program (ACP), many of whom have never participated in Rose Theater programming. These classrooms educate students with physical and developmental disabilities, creating and utilizing a curriculum that works with everyone’s strengths as well as their developmental and medical needs.

HOUSING: Ensuring people can safely stay in their homes through legal assistance or financial support.

> Project Houseworks: $15,000 for Home Repair Program. Project Houseworks’ request will help older homeowners in their goal to age-in-place in safe, healthy, and warm homes longer. Their no-cost repairs and modifications help delay or completely avoid expensive institutionalization, hospitalization, homelessness, or other environments that increase older adults’ risk of COVID-19 exposure and death. The Home Repair Program projects are those frequently associated with deferred maintenance in older homes (i.e., roof, electrical, plumbing, mechanical, windows, doors, floor coverings, wall repair, and paint) and help elderly homeowners avoid falls and/or safety hazards.

LEARNING RECOVERY: Supporting enrichment programs and activities to reverse disparities that grew due to remote learning and other educational disruptions.

> Child Saving Institute: $5,000 for SAFE Program. Child Saving Institute (CSI) Student & Family Enrichment (SAFE) students have been referred due to absenteeism, social problems, concern about home environment, and behavioral challenges – all of which put academic success for students in jeopardy. SAFE collaborates with students, families, and the schools, creating a network of support for students and their families. Reducing chronic absenteeism and facilitating transportation will contribute to helping children in the Omaha community catch up on learning missed during the coronavirus pandemic.

> Comunidad Maya Pixan Ixim: $15,000 for Maya Youth Academic Achievement Project. Many Maya parents could not support the Maya youth during remote learning because parents themselves do not speak Spanish or English and are not as familiar with technology. CMPI’s Maya Youth Academic Achievement project will address this by providing the Maya youth opportunities to build skills that will improve their academic achievement in school as well as embracing their identity through content around Maya arts and media production, math, and natural science. (Comunidad Maya Pixan Ixim, pictured above.)

> Omaha Street School: $7,500 for literacy and technology resources. Omaha Street School’s students were prime examples of students that were already suffering from an opportunity gap that was exacerbated further by the pandemic. With the majority behind grade level upon arrival to the school based on state standardized testing, Omaha Street School plans to purchase Reading Plus, a hybrid program of online and individual coaching/instruction that will offer professional development for staff as well as a customized reading experience for students to improve vocabulary, comprehension, and motivation.

WORKFORCE: Helping people gain new skills or education to find and secure stable employment.

> Restoring Dignity: $6,652 for mobile vaccination clinics. The Somali population was hit particularly hard by COVID-19. Restoring Dignity is organizing mobile vaccination clinics that allow refugees the opportunity to continue to work and support their families without risking their health or the health of those they encounter at their job, allowing them to maintain their earning power. Restoring Dignity has 14 mobile clinics planned from May through July that specifically target Omaha’s refugee populations.

> Somali Community Service, Inc.: $10,000 for immigrant assistance services. Somali refugees bring with them a wealth of knowledge, talent, hard work, enthusiasm, and diversity to the local economy. To use these assets to best benefit their families and the community-at-large, these individuals need support in navigating new and complex systems related to starting a business, job searching, computer classes, educational programs, and completing government documents. Somali Community Service works to meet the basic needs of the Somali community and other immigrants in Omaha, with a focus on workforce and economic opportunity.

> Somali American Heritage Society of Nebraska: $4,200 for immigrant support for unemployment. The Somali American Heritage Society of Nebraska helps more than 20 individuals every week for filing unemployment and employment applications. They are also planning to help people to find jobs and to prepare for interviews. The organization needs support to be able to operate in its full capacity and continue helping the Somali community in navigating the workforce.

> OneWorld: $25,000 for rent and utilities for vulnerable populations. As a result of the pandemic and related economic fallout, OneWorld patients are facing greater socio-economic obstacles to well-being and see worsening health outcomes. OneWorld plans to provide targeted housing solutions for the community’s most vulnerable families. OneWorld will direct rent and utility assistance for patients who do not qualify for other housing assistance to keep families in their homes and out of risk of falling into homelessness. This funding will provide bridge funding toward rent and utilities up to two months so patients such as these extremely vulnerable people (e.g., domestic abuse, unemployed, status as undocumented people) can avoid falling into homelessness.


Community Resilience Fund Awards Over $100K for COVID Recovery
Post-Pandemic Priorities for Youth Focus on Learning Recovery
COVID-19 Magnified Omaha’s Housing Issues
How the Pandemic Has Impacted Our Community’s Mental Health