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COVID-19 Fund Grants $100,732 to 11 Nonprofits

Posted on Oct 7, 2020, by

From homelessness to coming home, Pillars provides shelter, support and solutions to address the housing needs in our community.

Thanks to gifts generously donated to the COVID-19 Community Response Fund established by the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region and United Way Fox Cities, 11 nonprofits were recently awarded $100,732 in grants to assist their efforts as during the COVID-19 public health and financial emergency. In total since the fund was created March 17, 94 local nonprofit organizations have received $1,311,289 in grants.

Currently, grants are being given to nonprofit organizations in Outagamie, Calumet, Shawano, Waupaca and the Neenah-Menasha area of Winnebago counties providing basic needs services to marginalized and vulnerable groups of people who are disproportionately affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and economic crisis. This includes providing short-term support to these organizations as they reopen facilities and restart or reinvent their services.

Areas of funding priority:
• Housing and Safe Shelter – stable housing, eviction prevention, and safe shelter for homeless individuals.
• Health and Well-Being – physical, mental and behavioral health.
• Child Care – adequate access and availability.
• Financial Assistance – programs providing emergency assistance to individuals.
• Food – rural access and availability, underserved groups, emergency response.
• Vulnerable and Marginalized Populations

Heart of the Valley Food Pantry received a new pallet stacker to them do their work more efficiently and safely.

Grants are being awarded on an ongoing basis and listed at

Financial assistance

Children’s Cancer Family Foundation – A $6,000 grant provides financial assistance to families facing pediatric cancer in the Fox Valley region.

Options for Independent Living – A $10,000 grant helps people with disabilities and older adults in Outagamie, Calumet, Waupaca, Shawano and the Neenah and Menasha area of Winnebago counties meet their basic needs related to housing, food and equipment to enable them to live safely at home.

Heart of the Valley Food Pantry – A $2,400 grant helped purchase a pallet stacker for volunteers to safely unload food from trucks, helping to ensure continuation of food distribution.

Hortonville Food Pantry – A $5,000 grant helps the organization meet an increasing need for food assistance in Outagamie and Waupaca Counties.

Apricity – A $10,000 grant will be used to purchase HIPAA-compliant laptops to enable therapists working remotely to securely access information about clients from Outagamie and the Neenah and Menasha area of Winnebago counties who are in treatment and recovery for substance use disorders.

Friendship Place – A $10,000 grant enables the organization to adapt in-person and online services to continue helping adults with mental illness who need support, especially during the COVID-19 crisis, which is causing an increase in severe mental health symptoms of members.

Vulnerable Populations
Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Central Wisconsin – A $7,500 grant provides technology to develop and implement an e-mentoring platform to ensure safe communication for site-based matches in Outagamie, Calumet, Waupaca and the Neenah/Menasha area of Winnebago counties.

Casa Esther – The organization, which works with a large network of Spanish-speaking people in Northeast Wisconsin providing support, education and financial assistance, will use a $15,000 grant in the Fox Valley to provide basic needs financial assistance and legal advocacy and help people applying for immigration documentation.

CP Fox Cities – An $8,000 grant helps them transition their expressive therapies music therapy and courage martial arts programs to a virtual environment to help their clients engage in exercise and movement in a new way due to COVID-19.

Harbor House Domestic Abuse Programs – A $3,000 grant helps the organization convert space into a school room with supplies for children and teenagers staying in the shelter who need to engage in virtual learning.

Safe Shelter
Pillars – A $23,832 grant supports a four-month pilot effort in partnership with ThedaCare to address a significant increase in the number of homeless patients being admitted for inpatient psychiatric care. The pilot will provide a safe place for homeless patients to stay and receive support after being discharged from the hospital.

Donations Still Needed for COVID-19 Community Response Fund
To date, 384 individuals, businesses and foundations have stepped up generously to contribute more than $1,552,105. A list of donors is available at

With a public health emergency declared in the Fox Cities and many other northeast Wisconsin communities, the needs of local nonprofit organizations are significant. Ongoing donations to the fund, as well as direct donations to nonprofit organizations from individuals and businesses with a passion for specific organizations and causes, continue to be critically needed.

How to donate to the COVID-19 Community Response Fund 
The Community Foundation is waiving all credit card and administrative fees for this fund. Every dollar donated into the fund will be put into action in the community.
• To donate online, please visit
• Checks can be made payable to the Community Foundation/COVID-19 and mailed to Community Foundation, 4455 W. Lawrence St., Appleton, WI 54914.

About the COVID-19 Community Response Fund Granting Approach
In order to move resources quickly and not further burden nonprofit organizations, there is not a formal application process. Eligible nonprofits can email United Way to share their needs so they can be considered during the granting process.

We invite you to donate now to the COVID-19 Community Response Fund. You can also learn about who has given to the fund, the fund’s grant recipients, and check out our latest news and updates.

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