$1.1 million raised for pandemic relief

Today, the Palo Alto Community Fund distributed its 8th round of COVID-19 Relief Fund grants into the Palo Alto, East Palo Alto and Menlo Park community, this time for $100,000.

This brings the total funds given by you – the community  – to address COVID-19-related hardship to $1.1 million. A huge THANK YOU to all of you who have donated since April.

Where have you helped? Local Programs.

One benefit of giving locally is that you can see where your donation makes a difference. 100% of the $1.1 million raised has supported our neighbors in need. Your generosity has provided immediate relief to provide much needed food security, housing stability, child care, healthcare and mental health support.

Providing $ for Basic Needs

A grassroots effort driven by community volunteers, partnering with LifeMoves, provided immediate financial relief to 500 vulnerable families in the Palo Alto Unified School District (PAUSD). In addition, PACF made  grants to Ravenswood Education Foundation and the Menlo Park Atherton Education Foundation for their direct relief programs.

Pivoting to support our Elders

Avenidas has pivoted their services to reach our older population in their homes, rather than at their centers. The organization has ensured grocery and medicine delivery and – to help with isolation – switched 80% of their classes to Zoom. Aides visit homes of the most frail, supporting both the patient and their families. Avenidas’ state funding has been reduced by 30% as it is based on in-attendance community centers.

Reconfiguring Child Care

Palo Alto Community Child Care (PACCC), has the challenge of accommodating COVID-19 directives, for example, only 12 children in a room (usually 35), with two teachers per room, and still offering affordable, quality child care to Palo Alto families. Grants help with equipment and salaries.

Stabilizing Housing

Live in Peace’s “First of the Month” program helps those in our community currently unemployed due to COVID-19, many of whom are one bill away from losing their home. This program has helped more than 300 households and is one of three local nonprofits we support to help with housing stability.

Helping our most Vulnerable Neighbors

Partnering with Kafenia Peace Collective and local community organizers, we have financed gift cards, water and basic groceries delivered to 60 families who live in the vehicle and RV community along El Camino in Palo Alto.

Relieving Hunger

The Boys & Girls Club of the Peninsula, one out of five organizations we support focused on food security, continues to distribute 2,200+ to-go meals EACH WEEKNIGHT.

We are proud to stand with our 26 local nonprofit partners, who are working relentlessly to ensure that everyone in our community during this unprecedented time. To see a full list of where your donation is being utilized, please visit our COVID-19 Relief Fund FAQs.

What is needed most now? Child Care and Housing Stability

Sadly, we expect the situation to remain difficult for the foreseeable future, as uncertainty around the control of the epidemic continues, unemployment persists and government funding remains unreliable. In addition, many of our neighbors are hurting from the ever present disparity of opportunity and systemic racism that continues to hold back people of color, all of which has been magnified by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our local nonprofit partners and community leaders are most concerned about food and housing stability, lack of child care for working families whose children remain home, and a sudden drop of income for many households.

Posted Sept. 9, 2020