Baltimore Community Foundation Deploys COVID-19 Response Grants, Plans for Intermediate and Long-Term Needs Ahead

The Baltimore Community Foundation (BCF) announced the latest in a series of grants to mitigate the effects of COVID-19 on vulnerable individuals and communities in the Baltimore region on April 22.

The effort began in mid-March when, as the COVID-19 pandemic spread, BCF swiftly made emergency grants to 18 frontline organizations to support distribution of essential supplies such as diapers, formula, food, and hygiene products. Simultaneously, the foundation launched the COVID-19 Evolving Community Needs Fund to address immediate needs and those yet to come. The fund was seeded with $50,000 of BCF’s unrestricted grantmaking dollars and quickly augmented with generous gifts from many organizations.

While fundraising continues for the effort – which has $1.5 million committed to-date – grants have been flowing to communities in need. In a few short weeks, BCF has awarded nearly $300,000 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic from existing and emergency funds to organizations embedded in communities hit hard by the crisis, with a focus on reaching especially vulnerable populations and youth whose educational outcomes could be seriously impacted by the closure of schools and childcare centers.

BCF also invested in several nonprofits that have been critical to neighborhoods’ economic development and will be much needed in the recovery process. With these strategic priorities in mind, grant recipients range from frontline responders like Healthcare for the Homeless, to providers of day care services for essential workers such as Little Flowers Early Childhood and Development Center.

As noted, BCF moved quickly in March to deploy existing funds in response to immediate community needs, but going forward applications for BCF’s COVID-19 Evolving Community Needs Fund are being accepted through the COVID-19 Response Funding Collaborative of Greater Baltimore.

Beyond grantmaking, BCF, with guidance from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the Abell Foundation, the Aaron and Lillie Straus Foundation, PNC, J.P. Morgan Chase, and Goldman Sachs, is redirecting the pre-existing Small Business Technical Assistance Fund at BCF to help women and minority-owned businesses work with the Baltimore Development Corporation and regional CDFIs. The goal is to aid them in accessing much needed relief from federal, state and philanthropic sources.

For more information on the grants, visit Baltimore Community Foundation’s website.

Source: Baltimore Community Foundation

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