The Community Relief Fund
Community foundations can play an important leadership role any time a sudden, calamitous event seriously disrupts a community.
The Community Foundation stands ready to help in the event of any disaster effecting our region. One of our primary means of intervention is The Community Relief Fund, which was established in October 2019 in case of a possible future threat to our community.
In March 2020, when the significant impact of the coronavirus pandemic on our region became clear, foundation staff and board mobilized to activate the Community Relief Fund, secure funding assess community needs and distribute rapid response grants to area nonprofits.
Our goal is to work collaboratively with the nonprofit, government, philanthropic and private sectors to accelerate recovery for a thriving, resilient and even stronger Rappahannock River Region. We support organizations that are addressing immediate needs, longer term effects of the pandemic, and community recovery.
The Community Foundation seeded the fund with $50,000 from our board-directed, unrestricted Community Fund. By June 30, 2020, our generous community had donated another $516,614 to the Community Relief Fund to support area nonprofits as they increased and adapted their programs to meet new needs.
The Community Relief Fund concluded its Phase I rapid-response Immediate Relief grants to area nonprofits in June 2020. Our local nonprofits continue to demonstrate incredible resilience, ingenuity and tenacity and its an honor to play a part in implementing local solutions.
Phase II Community Recovery grant applications are now closed. In its second phase of grantmaking, the Community Relief Fund will provide funding to meet any operational or program needs of nonprofit organizations serving the region. Our goal is to support community organizations impacted by COVID-19, especially as they support vulnerable communities and communities who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. Nonprofit applicants will be notified in late January 2021.
The Community Foundation understands that the effects of the pandemic are far-reaching; that recovery is a marathon, not a sprint. The Community Relief Fund next steps include consulting with our nonprofit partners about the evolving needs in our community and identifying the most efficient and effective for continued support.
The Community Foundation urges everyone to include regional nonprofits in your crisis response giving by making a donation to the Community Relief Fund or by giving to them directly. Click here to donate now.