CSRA COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund Announces Additional $160,000 in Grants

United Way of the CSRA and the Community Foundation for the CSRA partnered to create the CSRA COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund to provide needed resources to nonprofit organizations on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic serving our most vulnerable populations.

Today, the organizations announced $160,000 in its second round of grants will be directed to the following organizations to assist their efforts:

ACTS of Aiken ($50,000) – This grant will support vulnerable populations in the communities of Aiken, Wagner, Jacksonville and Graniteville. Services may shift based on the changing needs of those communities but will include assistance with food, prescriptions, rental and utility assistance.

Community Ministries of North Augusta ($40,000) – This grant will help individuals in need due to COVID-19 in the greater North Augusta and Edgefield areas. Support services will include food, rental and utility assistance.

Child Enrichment ($35,000) – Due to sheltering in place and family stresses related to COVID-19, Child Enrichment is seeing an increase in reported incidents of child abuse.  The increase has required them to perform more forensic interviews and offer additional support and counseling services than normal. This grant will help facilitate the additional staffing hours needed to provide these services and help with costs associated with the technology needed to safely provide internet-based services.

New Bethlehem Community Center ($20,000) – Even in good times, the Bethlehem community relies on the New Bethlehem Community Center to help with food security and other essential services. Due to COVID-19 and school closures, the Center is seeing a large increase in need for food, medical supplies and other essential services related to both the elderly and families with children. This grant will help with their food and medical supply distribution programs.

Broad Street Ministries ($10,000) – While this ministry serves individuals regardless of where they live, it is a lifeline to individuals in need living in the greater East Augusta area. Due to COVID-19, they have seen a dramatic increase in the number of individuals seeking their help. This grant will help purchase food and other essential items.

Concerned Women ($5,000) – This grant will allow Concerned Women to purchase additional food to meet the growing need for their assistance. Although they work with individuals from multiple counties, they are based in Columbia County and are readily available to those residents who have been impacted by the current crisis.

These grants have been made possible by contributions to the CSRA COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund from Augusta National Golf Club, Community Foundation for the CSRA, United Way of the CSRA, Chestnut Family Foundation, The Wilbur and Hilda Glenn Family Foundation, Georgia Power Foundation, Graphic Packaging International, Truist, Betty and Davis Fitzgerald Foundation and scores of individuals in our community. As the need continues to rapidly increase throughout the region, please join these community leaders and donate to the CSRA COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund today at www.uwcsra.org or www.cfcsra.org.

United Way and Community Foundation staff, with guidance from a volunteer advisory committee comprised of respected community leaders, are working together to identify needs and gaps in resources during this ongoing pandemic. Nonprofits in the community can submit grant applications through the Community Foundation website. Support funds will be released on a rolling basis throughout the outbreak and recovery phases of this crisis, making it possible to deploy resources quickly and adapt to evolving needs in subsequent funding phases.

The first few phases of grants will focus on the immediate basic needs of financially vulnerable individuals and families to help bolster resilience in affected communities. These vital needs range from housing support (including shelter, rent and mortgage); utilities and transportation assistance; and food, personal hygiene items, childcare, etc.

We anticipate our region will continue to experience economic burdens during this time. The Community Foundation for the CSRA and the United Way will continue to assess the short and long-term impacts of this health and economic crisis on this area. Funding priorities may shift as our understanding of need and where we can be most impactful deepens.

In an effort to direct those most in need of immediate assistance to critical resources, individuals can get connected to United Way’s free information and referral service by dialing 2-1-1, or by visiting www.211csra.org  to use the Community Resources Database. Each call is completely free and confidential.