COVID-19 Community Fund Awards More than $880,000 in Grants
Grants awarded to help residents stay in their homes, access food, receive direct assistance, access vaccinations and more as challenges from the impacts of COVID-19 persist
New Haven, CT (March 24, 2021) – Tens of thousands of Greater New Haven residents will receive food and housing assistance and other crucial services thanks to the Greater New Haven COVID-19 Community Fund distributing $881,275 to 52 nonprofit organizations. This fifth round of grants was approved on March 12, 2021; the Fund was established a year ago on March 20, 2020 by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven in partnership with United Way of Greater New Haven. As the need in the community continues there will be at least two more grantmaking cycles through the COVID-19 Community Fund. The next application deadline is March 26; the following cycle opens April 5 with applications due on April 23. Nonprofits are encouraged to visit cfgnh.org or uwgnh.org for application information.
“This round of critical funding could not have been possible without the continued support from our donors and community. As the weather warms and vaccination eligibility expands to more people, it may give the illusion that the needs are waning, but this funding cycle has made clear that the need for direct assistance has not diminished for people of color and women in particular in our region. Our community still has a long way to go to recover stronger from this pandemic, and we are grateful to all the donors who have and who will continue to help meet the needs brought on by the pandemic,” says William W. Ginsberg, the President & CEO of The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.
Even with new federal stimulus funds under the American Rescue Plan Act, many households in the region face difficult choices because of lost jobs and incomes. Women, especially Black women and Latinas, have suffered the majority of pandemic-related job losses, according to the National Women’s Law Center. For the first time in Connecticut's history, females surpassed males in unemployment claims according to data published in “Essential Equity: Women, COVID-19 and Rebuilding CT.” The report also revealed that 76% of parents who left the workforce in 2020 because of child care are female.
The lost incomes are forcing households to choose between priorities: to put food on the table, to catch up on rent or mortgage payments or to help extended family struggling to make ends meet. Relief from rental assistance programs has not come quickly enough which has prompted some nonprofits such as IRIS and APT Foundation to help their clients pay bills.
"The large number of applications to the joint Covid Fund underscore the continuing need in the community. The hope offered by the vaccines is so encouraging, and yet we can't forget how many people have had their lives turned upside down during the pandemic, and that they still need help to rebuild. I'm so pleased that United Way and The Community Foundation are able to continue our partnership to help our community," says Jennifer Heath, Executive Director of United Way of Greater New Haven.
Even with new stimulus funds under the American Rescue Plan Act, difficult choices about where to allocate the money have to be made, especially in households at or below the poverty level; in New Haven the low-income rate, a term applied to households with annual incomes of less than twice the federal poverty level, is substantially higher (approaching 50%) than the region overall (26%) according to DataHaven’s 2019 Greater New Haven Community Index. Low income households are choosing between priorities: to put food on the table, to catch up on rent or mortgage payments or to help extended family struggling to make ends meet. Relief from rental assistance programs has not come quickly enough which has prompted some nonprofits such as IRIS and APT Foundation to help their clients make payments.
Residents eligible for vaccination may have transportation issues, child care barriers and/or concern over vaccination effects. Grantees like the Agency on Aging and Interfaith Volunteer Care Givers of Greater New Haven have partnered on a Vaccine Buddies program that is helping schedule appointments for seniors and provide transportation to get to appointments and receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Several nonprofits serving the Valley region have received funding to address the particular needs of that locale; grant recipients include Griffin Hospital, Team Inc., Seymour Ambulance Association, St. Vincent de Paul of the Valley, and STORM Engine Company Ambulance Corps.
Funding decisions regarding The Greater New Haven COVID-19 Community Fund are made by a volunteer Committee; members of the Committee consist of current and former Community Foundation and United Way board members, including: Khalilah L. Brown-Dean (bio), Andrew Eder (bio), Judith Meyers (bio), Flemming Norcott Jr. (bio), Marcella Nuñez Smith (bio), and Diane Young Turner (bio).
“Working closely with my cohorts on the Fund’s distribution Committee and the staff of both The Community Foundation and United Way to help make the best possible grant decisions has not been an easy task. The knowledge I have gained about the depth of the needs in our community has far exceeded my assumptions. I am no stranger to this type of work, but what we are currently seeing is well beyond our ability to help everyone with even the most basic of needs. This makes our teamwork both rewarding in our ability to be of help, but, at the same time, painful in that we don’t have enough funds to be able to do more,” says Andrew Eder, Greater New Haven COVID-19 Community Fund Committee member and Chairman of Eder Brothers, Inc.
A complete list of Greater New Haven COVID-19 Community Fund grant recipients to date and ways to donate to the Fund are at www.cfgnh.org/covid19fund.
Support assistance for seniors to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, as well as groceries for food-insecure seniors.
APT Foundation Inc. - $25,000
Support clients with food, clothing, and rental assistance.
Boys & Girls Club of Milford - $20,000
Support increased staffing needs due to decreased group sizes as well as to offer scholarships for youth and families that are unable to pay membership fees.
Breakthrough Church - $15,000
Support food and supplies for the food pantry.
Cathedral of Higher Praise - $14,500
Support food and educational assistance for families with multi-challenged children (mentally, intellectually, and physically).
Central Connecticut Coast YMCA - $25,000
To support youth mentoring and childcare programming in Greater New Haven.
Christian Love Center - $7,500
To support food and supplies for the food pantry.
Christian Union Baptist Church dba Christian Union Full Gospel - $2,500
Support personal hygiene items to low-income community members and families.
To provide free services for elderly residents living with Alzheimer's and related dementias.
Community Soup Kitchen - $25,000
Support the cost of food and take-out supplies.
Connecticut Cancer Foundation - $10,000
Support financial assistance to cancer patients in Greater New Haven for basic living needs such as rent, mortgage, electricity, food, and heat.
Cornell Scott Hill Health Corporation - $25,000
Support for a COVID-19 vaccine public messaging and education campaign.
Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen - $30,000
Support to the Downtown Drop-in & Resource Center.
Elm City Internationals - $15,000
To support tutoring, food, personal protection equipment, and supplies for academic and athletic programs for immigrant and refugee middle school and high school students.
Fellowship Place - $18,000
To support the expansion of weekend hours for the Fellowship Inn Homeless Daytime Drop-in program.
FISH of Greater New Haven, Inc. - $15,000
To support personal protection equipment and staffing for food delivery to homebound individuals.
Greater Mount Carmel Pentecostal Church - $2,500
To support groceries and personal hygiene items for community members in need.
Griffin Hospital - $25,000
To support the community mobile vaccination clinics.
Haven's Harvest - $26,000
Support the distribution of recovered food to New Haven-based organizations serving residents who are food insecure.
To support the Future Summer Enrichment program.
To support the Vaccine Buddies program providing activities that assist seniors to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
To support food and rental assistance for refugees.
Kadiwaku Family Foundation - $6,000
To support food and personal protective equipment for undocumented immigrants living in New Haven.
Loaves & Fishes - $15,275
Support food and equipment for the food pantry, as well as the cost to deliver food.
Montessori School on Edgewood, Inc. - $10,000
To support the purchase of UV-C lights for the classroom.
To support the food pantry.
To support legal services for individuals impacted by the pandemic including frontline workers facing health risks; children with special needs unable to access distance learning opportunities because of lack of technology or other barriers, victims of domestic violence, and the newly unemployed.
New Haven Pride Center - $30,000
To support the expansion of programming for LGBTQ+ youth.
New Opportunities, Inc. - $5,000
To support meals for homebound Cheshire residents who are on the Meals on Wheels waiting list.
Nutrition Security Solutions, Inc. - $15,000
To support the delivery of food to elderly and mobility impaired residents in Greater New Haven.
Omega Seventh-day Adventist Church - $5,000
To support the distribution of food, clothing, and hygiene products.
One Village Healing - $20,000
Support health and wellness services to communities of color.
Operation Fuel, Inc. - $25,000
To support fuel assistance for Greater New Haven low-income families impacted by the pandemic.
Project MORE, Inc. - $15,000
To support the purchase of additional technology for the Reentry Welcome Center.
Ronald McDonald House of CT, Inc. - $5,000
To support personal protective equipment and cleaning supplies for families in residence.
SARAH Foundation - $10,000
To support personal protective equipment for staff and clients during in-person service delivery.
Second Star of Jacob Pantry - $2,500
Support equipment for the food pantry.
Seymour Ambulance Association - $5,000
To support personal protective equipment-related supplies.
Solar Youth - $22,500
To support a new space and staff to enable an in-person after-school teen program.
Squash Haven, Inc. - $10,000
Provide financial assistance for housing, utilities, and/or food costs for undocumented families and/or families whose financial circumstances have been negatively impacted by the pandemic.
St. Martin de Porres Academy - $20,000
Support the purchase of replacement windows to improve air circulation.
St. Vincent de Paul of the Valley - $15,000
To support the purchase of food for the food pantry and grocery gift cards.
The Storehouse Project, Inc. - $20,000
Support food delivery to homeless and homebound individuals, as well as the purchase of personal protective equipment for staff.
Storm Engine Company Ambulance Corps, Inc. - $20,000
To support the purchase of a Lucas Mechanical CPR Device.
TEAM, Inc. - $50,000
To support financial assistance for basic needs for Valley residents.
The Towers Foundation - $20,000
To support meals for low-income elderly residents.
Ulbrich Boys & Girls Club - $10,000
To support food for youth, and personal protective equipment for program staff.
Unidad Latina Accion - $20,000
To support food for youth, and personal protective equipment for program staff.
Vertical Church - $25,000
To support the emergency food pantry and free clothing distribution.
Walk Of Faith Church, Inc. - $7,500
To support the Community Food Pantry and the senior home food basket deliveries.
Whitneyville Cultural Common - $25,000
To support the Distance Learning Hub at the Whitneyville United Church of Christ.
Women and Family Life Center - $20,000
To support cash assistance, gift cards, toiletries, and cleaning/laundry supplies for clients, as well as staffing costs for social workers.
About The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven
The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven in Connecticut is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the U.S. and was established in 1928 as the permanent charitable endowment for New Haven and its surrounding communities of: Ansonia, Bethany, Branford, Cheshire, Derby, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Madison, Milford, North Branford, North Haven, Orange, Oxford, Seymour, Shelton, Wallingford, West Haven, and Woodbridge. In 2020, The Foundation began implementing a 5-year strategic plan and enacted new mission and vision statements toward expanding opportunity and equity in Greater New Haven. In 2021, it launched Stepping Forward, a $26 million commitment to addressing the impact of COVID-19 and advancing racial equity. The Foundation’s mission is to inspire, support, inform, listen to and collaborate with the people and organizations of Greater New Haven to build an ever more connected, inclusive, equitable and philanthropic community.
For more than three generations, generous local donors have built The Community Foundation’s endowment by establishing permanent funds or making gifts to existing funds that distribute grants to a broad variety of issues and organizations. These donors, past and present, make their gifts to ensure that programs and causes that matter most to them will be supported today and forever. As of December 31, 2020, The Foundation’s assets were valued at more than $720 million. For more information about The Foundation visit www.cfgnh.org or follow @cfgnh on facebook and twitter.
About United Way of Greater New Haven
United Way of Greater New Haven fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in greater New Haven. The organization, which celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2020, brings people and organizations together to create solutions to the region's most pressing challenges. We tackle issues that cannot be solved by any one group working alone. Join the movement to Live United at https://uwgnh.org/.
The Community Foundation
Senior Director, Marketing and Engagement
United Way of Greater New Haven
Correction March 30: one instance of the name of a grant recipient was corrected to its full, proper name, Interfaith Volunteer Care Givers of Greater New Haven.