NEW BEDFORD – Given the ongoing pandemic, the SouthCoast Community Foundation announced it will continue to raise support for and issue grants on a rolling basis from its SouthCoast Emergency Response Fund in 2021.
The fund was established in March 2020 to swiftly distribute aid to the most vulnerable communities and regional nonprofits experiencing the detrimental impact of COVID-19. At the beginning of the new year, the foundation received new commitments of nearly $1.5 million which enables the organization to mobilize and maintain, for the foreseeable future, its relief efforts as the crisis and the demand for critical services continues.
“Last year, thanks to philanthropic-minded community partners and residents, we were able to rapidly deploy resources to nonprofits serving those disproportionately impacted. Donors understand that we have a good handle on where the local needs are and have shown we can move quickly to get relief into the right hands,” stated SouthCoast Community Foundation President John Vasconcellos. “Even though vaccine distribution is encouraging, the counties we serve are still going to require ongoing support well into 2021 so we will remain vigilant in our relief efforts.”
Last year, the SouthCoast Emergency Response Fund received $6 million from a wide range of government, foundation, corporate, and individual donors and distributed $5.4 million. The foundation issued 276 grants to 122 nonprofit organizations, spanning the entirety of the Southeastern Massachusetts region, addressing a wide range of educational, economic, and cultural focus areas including: Basic Needs ($1,516,421), Food Security ($1,431,889), Remote work/learning ($1,134,210), Housing ($1,032,000), Hazard Pay/PPE ($300,000), Public Health ($225,000), Mental Health ($120,000), and Summer Programming ($55,000), to offset costs due to adherence of COVID-19 advisories.
The fund will continue to target these focus areas in 2021 as well as equal access to the vaccine for all members
of the communities it serves. The organization will also deepen its collaboration with the nonprofit, government,
philanthropic and private sectors to accelerate recovery for a thriving, resilient and even stronger Southeastern
In addition to the Emergency Response Fund, the Foundation plans to continue providing nonprofits with access
to capability-building programs and networking opportunities.
Significant support in 2020 came from the Massachusetts COVID-19 Relief Fund. To view last year’s recipients, go to southcoastcf.org