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COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund Awards First Round of Grants

April 03, 2020 5:28 PM | Cynthia Pritchard (Administrator)

$350,000 in Grants Awarded from the Delaware COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund

First round of grants goes to 11 nonprofits statewide

In its first round of grants, the Delaware COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund today awarded $350,000 to 11 nonprofit organizations providing services to communities throughout the state.

The grants will address a broad range of community needs during the pandemic. Grantees are:

  • Modern Maturity: $50,000 to deliver additional meals to seniors at their homes.
  • Brandywine Counseling: $25,000 to meet increased demand for recovery services.
  • Family Counseling of St. Paul: $22,000 to meet increased demand for family counseling services.
  • Westside Family Healthcare: $50,000 for telehealth equipment to provide care for prenatal and chronically ill patients.
  • YMCA: $50,000 for childcare for essential workers statewide.
  • Easterseals of Delaware & Maryland’s Eastern Shore: $29,000 for telehealth equipment to provide child intervention services.
  • CHILD, Inc: $36,000 to provide housing for battered women and their children, meeting increased demand because of social distancing requirements.
  • CHEER: $38,000 delivering additional meals to seniors at their homes.
  • Housing vouchers for the homeless: $50,000

o Friendship House for New Castle County - $30,000

o Community Resource Center for Sussex County - $10,000

o Catholic Charities for Kent County - $10,000

In this first round, 95 applicants requested a total of $3.9 million. The initial awards represent 23% of the total $1.5 million raised to date for the COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund, which is housed at the Delaware Community Foundation (DCF).

The fund will award an additional $350,000 in grants next week.

The goal is for the fund, which launched March 18, to provide grants for several months, said DCF President and CEO Stuart Comstock-Gay, who chairs the fund’s decision-making council.

To do that, additional dollars are needed, Comstock-Gay said.

“In the coming weeks, the needs of the community are going to evolve and grow,” he said. “We are doing deep work to make sure these dollars go to the organizations who have boots on the ground, providing food, shelter, medical attention, childcare and other essential services to the people who need help most.”

About the Fund

Grants from the Strategic Response Fund will initially focus on urgent needs related to COVID-19, then expand over time to more structural and long-term needs. Target applicants are nonprofit organizations with deep roots in the community and a strong track record of serving people who are immediately and disproportionately suffering from the crisis.

Grantees are selected through a rigorous process that involves a diverse team of more than 50 community leaders representing all three counties and a range of areas of expertise. Final decisions are made by the COVID-19 Grants Council:

Stuart Comstock-Gay, president and CEO, DCF

Sheila Bravo, president, Delaware Alliance for Nonprofit Advancement (DANA), ex officio

Vernita Dorsey, WSFS

There du Pont, president, Longwood Foundation

Alan Levin, SoDel Concepts

Leslie Newman, retired CEO, Children & Families First

Enid Wallace-Simms, Delmarva Power

Amy Walls, Discover Bank

Applications are being accepted weekly on a rolling basis and grants will be awarded weekly for as long as funding is available and community needs exist related to COVID-19. Each week, applications received by noon on Monday will be reviewed, grantees will be selected Friday morning, and funds will be transferred Friday afternoon.

The application is open at delcf.org/covid-grants. The deadline for the next round of awards is Monday, April 6, at noon.

The fund, which is being directed by Philanthropy Delaware President Cynthia Pritchard, already includes generous gifts from the Longwood Foundation ($1 million), Welfare Foundation ($200,000), Laffey McHugh ($100,000), Discover ($75,000), DCF ($75,000), WSFS Bank ($25,000) and others. The DCF also has waived all administrative fees for this fund, so that 100 percent of the funds are going to organizations helping people in need.

The Delaware COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund is part of the Delaware COVID-19 Emergency Response Initiative, a nonprofit collaborative response to the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. The DCF, DANA, PD and United Way of Delaware are partnering to coordinate charitable resources to maximize impact statewide during this crisis.

To contribute, visit delcf.org/covid19-fund.

About Philanthropy Delaware

Philanthropy Delaware serves as the state association of grantmakers to advance philanthropy in the first state by connecting key stakeholders to drive meaningful impact for all Delawareans.

About the Delaware Community Foundation

The mission of the Delaware Community Foundation is to improve the lives of the people of Delaware by empowering and growing philanthropy through knowledge and relationships, now and in the future. As a facilitator, information resource and manager of charitable funds, the DCF helps communities and philanthropists focus charitable resources for the greatest community benefit statewide. For more information, visit delcf.org or call 302.571.8004.


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