RI COVID-19 Fund Awards $2.4 Million to Nonprofits Providing Services and Basic Needs

Dozens of nonprofits on the frontlines of responding to the COVID-19 crisis are getting $2.4 million in grants from a special fund created by the Rhode Island Foundation and United Way of Rhode Island, which has now awarded $3.6 million in grants, including the first round of grants made March 27.

Among the organizations receiving funding from the COVID-19 Response Fund are the Blackstone Valley Emergency Food Center, Clinica Esperanza, the Domestic Violence Resource Center of South County, the East Bay Community Action Program, Newport Mental Health and the Northern RI Food Pantry.

“As our state prepares for a coming surge in this crisis, these grants have the potential to save lives,” said United Way of Rhode Island President and CEO Cortney Nicolato. “I am grateful for every donor for their support, and equally thankful for the resilient nonprofit employees who step up every single day to take care of our families and neighbors.”

The grants ranged from $10,000 to $75,000. Many will help local nonprofits provide food, housing and health care to Rhode Islanders affected by the crisis. Additionally, funding was awarded for medical supplies as care providers face unprecedented challenges to maintain operations and deliver services to those most in need.

“There isn’t anyone in our community who hasn’t been touched by this crisis, and nonprofits are the boots on the ground for all of us. Seeing donors and service providers rise to this unprecedented and growing challenge is inspiring,” said Neil D. Steinberg, president and CEO of the Foundation.

Full list of grantees

Application Information

The Foundation and United Way established the COVID-19 Response Fund on March 17 and have combined to raise $5.8 million in contributions.

CharterCARE Foundation COVID-19 Fund Supports Local Nonprofits

The Chartercare Foundation’s COVID19 Response Fund has acted quickly to address needs of nonprofits in RI. To date, the Foundation has awarded nearly $100,000 to the following agencies:

· Meals on Wheels to address increasing food insecurities among elderly and shut-ins;

· Thundermist Health for a call center and outdoor triage unit serving 52,000 patients in 3 locations;

· Meeting Street School for stabilization for vulnerable families in the early intervention program through tele-health initiatives;

· RI Free Clinic for triage response for uninsured adults thru teleservice infrastructure;

· Comprehensive Community Action for a telehealth initiative at 4 sites

· Women’s Resource Center of Newport for remote clinical mental health support for victims of domestic violence.

In addition, the Foundation has partnered with Family Service of RI in broadening the scope of distribution of Be Safe Kits to disadvantaged families throughout Rhode Island.

The Foundation will continue to monitor community needs and may open a second round of funding. For details on this and other grant opportunities, please visit www.chartercarefoundation.org.

Champlin Foundation Gift Enables Rhode Island Nonprofit Hospitals to Increase COVID-19 Tests

The Champlin Foundation announced today a $1.6+ million, four-pronged philanthropic approach to support Rhode Island’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The commitment includes $600,000 that will allow four non-profit hospitals to acquire testing and diagnostic machines to dramatically increase the number of COVID-19 tests that can be taken and completed each day.

“No one has seen anything the likes of this public health crisis and the economic repercussions. While it’s created a good deal of uncertainty, it has also brought the community together even as we keep our social distance. The Champlin Foundation is taking unprecedented steps to support Rhode Island’s public health response and core members of our state’s nonprofit community,” said Champlin Foundation Executive Director Nina Stack. “The Foundation is making a $1.6 million commitment of new money and offering flexibility to ease restrictions on certain existing grants. Our grants are helping the state’s nonprofit hospital systems acquire the necessary testing equipment to increase COVID testing capacity as well as providing front-line and earned revenue-based nonprofits with capital liquidity during trying and uncertain economic times. Widespread events like this require a full community response and we’re proud to stand up with Rhode Islanders in every part of the state to do all we can to assist in this health and economic crisis.”

With Champlin’s support, Lifespan, Care New England and South County Health will be able to substantially increase the number of COVID-19 tests conducted each day, with the deployment of five new testing machines.  The support also allows Landmark Health in Woonsocket and Westerly Hospital to expand their laboratory equipment to more effectively determine non COVID-19 respiratory illnesses.  With faster testing and results it allows more efficient use of available resources.

“These are unpredictable times for everyone and especially for those on the frontline preparing for the inevitable surge of infected patients,” said Timothy J. Babineau, MD, President and CEO of Lifespan. “We’re all in this together, and the incredible generosity of The Champlin Foundation to equip Rhode Island Hospital with COVID-19 testing machines underscores their long history of support of our state’s vital health care system. Because of the foundation, we will soon have the ability to test three times as many patients in a single day. This gift will literally save lives in the days and weeks to come.”

“These machines are of vital importance in our fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to the grant that The Champlin Foundation has stepped up to provide, Care New England will soon be able to more quickly turn around in-house testing, and for more patients right when it’s needed,” said James Fanale, MD, President and CEO of Care New England.

 The $600,000 gift to the state’s nonprofit hospitals is one part of a four-pronged, $1.6 million response that Champlin’s Distribution Committee approved this week. The other components include:

  • $1M Emergency Capital Liquidity Fund: Working with its longtime grantees, Champlin will conduct an RFP process to award grants to eligible agencies or organizations. Priority will be given to organizations that are directly responding to the COVID-19 crisis and those organizations that have experienced a substantial loss of earned revenue (i.e. childcare tuition, program fees, ticket sales, etc.). The RFP details are currently being drafted and will be distributed to eligible grantees in the coming weeks.
  • Easing of Restrictions on Open Grants: The fastest and simplest way Champlin can help existing grantees who have had to ramp up in service delivery or have been cut off from earned revenue is to release restrictions on their existing open grants. On a case-by-case basis, organizations will be considered for flexibility to repurpose capital funds awarded through Champlin’s past grant allocations. This flexibility could potentially free up millions of dollars of revenue for nonprofits and agencies across the state.
  • Extended Deadline for 2020 Capital Grant Applications: Earlier this year, The Champlin Foundation introduced an easy-to-use online grant application portal. The Foundation began accepting applications on March 1, 2020. Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the Foundation has decided to extend the application deadline from April 30, 2020 to May 31, 2020. This extended deadline will allow agencies and organizations to better assess their needs and priorities that may have been impacted by COVID-19.

The Foundation’s first ever grant was $50 to Rhode Island Hospital in 1933 to purchase eyeglasses for Rhode Islanders in need. Since then, The Champlin Foundation has awarded nearly $600 million to fund capital projects for Rhode Island non-profit organizations. These investments have fostered better medical care, improved education, expanded access to social services, conservation of open spaces, preservation of historic buildings, enrichment of the arts, advancement of animal welfare and more. Over the years, the Foundation has proactively responded to catastrophic events and crisis situations, including Rhode Island’s credit union collapse, the Station Nightclub Fire, and the fallout from the Great Recession.

RI COVID-19 Response Fund Awards $1.2 Million to Local Nonprofits

United Way of Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Foundation have announced the first round of funding for local nonprofit agencies at the forefront of COVID-19 response.

$1.2 million in grants will be distributed to 27 local agencies in the coming days.

Grantees will use the funding to provide direct service to Rhode Islanders impacted by COVID-19. Funds will go toward food, personal care products, and assistance with household expenses. Additionally, funding was awarded to health centers, community centers, and shelters as they face unprecedented challenges to maintaining operations and delivering services to those most in need.

Read the full list of grantees.

A joint grants review committee — composed of team members from United Way and the Foundation — are working together to review applications and make funding decisions in real-time.

“We are hearing from the nonprofit community every day about the disruption to services caused by this pandemic. Being able to quickly support them, and Rhode Islanders with their most basic needs, has the ability to not only provide comfort but also to save lives,” said United Way of Rhode Island president and CEO Cortney Nicolato.

“As this health crisis will continue for some time, I am grateful for every donor who has stepped up so far, for the donations to come, and to every nonprofit employee who continues to show up, every day, to take care of our families and neighbors.”

Together, United Way of Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Foundation established the COVID-19 Response Fund on March 17 and have raised more than $5.2 million in contributions.

“Throughout the entire state, nonprofit organizations are stepping up to assist neighbors in need during this unprecedented and uncertain time. It’s truly heartening to see the response,” said Neil D. Steinberg, president and CEO of the Foundation.

“We’re committed to getting this funding to where it is needed the most. Thanks to our generous donors, these grants will provide a safety net to support many Rhode Islanders. We also welcome more donations to the fund, so that we are able to continue meeting community need.”

Gifts to the fund can be made in any amount. Donations will be accepted as long as the need continues.


 

Tufts Health Plan Foundation Commits $1 Million to Address COVID-19

Tufts Health Plan Foundation is making an additional $1 million available to efforts driven by community and to nonprofit organizations supporting older people affected by the coronavirus outbreak in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Connecticut.

Tufts Health Plan Foundation will continue to support healthy aging by funding organizations assisting with access to food, at-home support, housing, transportation, medical supplies and other services, especially for older people and those most vulnerable.  Those with underlying health conditions and people over 60 have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. It is especially important to ensure resources are available to provide these supports and services.

The Foundation announced that $125,000 will be given to Rhode Island efforts including Meals on Wheels of Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Community Food Bank, and the RI COVID-19 Response Fund (Rhode Island Foundation/United Way of Rhode Island). 

“We are grateful to the local, state and federal public health agencies, first responders, and the many community organizations who are stepping up to respond to this challenge,” said Tom Croswell, president and CEO of Tufts Health Plan. “We hope this funding will provide local organizations flexibility in their operations to respond to pressing and emerging needs in the communities they support.”

Tufts Health Plan Foundation also will provide current grantees the flexibility to adjust their budgets to support new work related to COVID-19. In addition, donations made by Tufts Health Plan employees to nonprofit organizations responding to COVID-19 are eligible for a two-for-one match, effectively tripling their donations. This double match will allow employees to give to where they see the biggest needs in their communities.

“We’re grateful to our board for their swift action,” said Nora Moreno Cargie, president of Tufts Health Plan Foundation and vice president for corporate citizenship at Tufts Health Plan.  “It’s our responsibility to listen to community, to be nimble, relevant and responsive.”

Rhode Island Foundation Supported Over 2,000 Nonprofits with Over $50 Million in Grants in 2019

The Rhode Island Foundation awarded a record $56 million in grants to more than 2,000 nonprofit organizations last year.

“We are grateful for the passionate and committed donors who have worked with us for more than a century to tackle the challenges and issues of the day,” said Neil D. Steinberg, the Foundation’s president and CEO. “Partnering with nonprofit organizations to support their crucial work in the community, engaging generous donors and providing leadership around key issues for our state all played a role in our outstanding growth as we rise to meet the needs of all Rhode Islanders.”

Of the $56 million in grants awarded last year, 72 percent were donor-directed awards and 28 percent were Foundation-directed. Many of the grants aligned with the Foundation’s three strategic priorities: educational success, healthy lives and economic security. Through these, the Foundation invests in organizations and programs that strive for long-term solutions to significant community issues.

“Working with committed nonprofit partners, our support helps to move every Rhode Island student closer to achieving educational success, encourages all Rhode Islanders to lead healthier lives and puts economic security within reach of even more of our state’s residents,” said Steinberg.

The Foundation also made grants to nonprofits doing critical work in a wide variety of sectors, such as arts and culture, basic human needs, the environment and housing.

In addition to grant-making and fundraising, community leadership is central to the Foundation’s work.

In 2019, the Foundation raised a record $620,000 for its Civic Leadership Fund (CLF). The annual fund enables the Foundation to go beyond traditional grant-making to meet emerging opportunities and challenges, and engage Rhode Islanders in civic and civil dialogue.

Last year, the CLF supported Foundation-led initiatives such as the creation of 10-year strategic plans to improve health and public education in Rhode Island.

Women’s Fund Releases Report on the RI Progress on Gender Equity

The Women’s Fund of Rhode Island has released a new research report, titled “An Uneven Path: State Investments in Women’s Economic Self-Sufficiency 2019.”

The report and accompanying executive summary drew on state budget documents, Rhode Island’s Standard of Need report, the U.S. Census Bureau, and other publicly available information to gauge the state’s progress on gender equity.  Report and summary

 

Centreville Bank Charitable Foundation Awards Jonnycake Center of Peace Dale $150,000

The Centreville Bank Charitable Foundation awarded a $150,000 grant to the Jonnycake Center of Peace Dale, for major renovations of a 120-year-old schoolhouse that was recently purchased to house the Center’s food pantry, social service department, and administrative offices, as well as to provide community space for workshops, special programs, and wellness initiatives.

Executive Director Kate Brewster said,  “The new space will provide our visitors with an enhanced, dignified experience. The ‘Jonnycake Market’ will recreate a true grocery store experience. Social service staff will be co-located with the Market, allowing for regular interactions and timely assistance with visitors, including those with disabilities who currently cannot climb our stairs.”

“Centreville Bank prides itself on supporting the local Rhode Island community by partnering with organizations that help serve our state’s less fortunate,” said Centreville Bank President and CEO Harold Horvat. “We are very happy to be in the financial position to support the Jonnycake Center of Peace Dale as they strive to fight hunger, provide critical social services, and offer those in need improved accessibility, and ultimately, a greater sense of hope.”

 

Tufts Health Plan Foundation Awards Three Year Grant to Age Friendly RI

Tufts Health Plan Foundation announced a three year grant to Age Friendly RI as part of nine new community investments totaling $972,000, all of which demonstrate the Foundation’s commitment to policies and practices that support healthy aging. These investments are in addition to $3.9 million in grants announced earlier this year.

“The Foundation is proud to support community efforts to be vibrant, healthy and equitable,” said Tom Croswell, Tufts Health Plan president and CEO and a member of the Foundation’s board of directors. “Advocating for public policy change is essential to achieving social change at scale.”
Tufts Health Plan Foundation is the only regional funder exclusively focused on healthy aging. The new grants support engagement of older people as advocates on critical policy work to include addressing gaps in food and health care access, transportation and community safety.

“We value advocacy and leadership among older people,” said Nora Moreno Cargie, president of Tufts Health Plan Foundation and vice president for corporate citizenship at Tufts Health Plan. “The organizations we are supporting demonstrate collaboration with state agencies and other community groups that spurs innovation and makes our communities better places to grow up and grow old.”

Age Friendly Rhode Island was awarded $360,000 to strengthen its organizational capacity and engage, encourage and expand cross-sector collaboration and information sharing.

 

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Blue Cross & Blue Shield of RI Awards $200,000 to Support Safe and Affordable Housing

Recognizing the impact that access to safe and affordable housing has on health and well-being, Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) has awarded a total of $200,000 to five organizations focused on increasing awareness of the need for, and improving access to, affordable housing in Rhode Island.  BCBSRI has expanded the scope of its grantmaking to include funding for housing-related initiatives.

BCBSRI’s decision to expand philanthropic giving to include housing followed the recent release of the RI Life Index, a new data resource focused on life factors, or social determinants of health (SDoH), which influence health and well-being. Specifically, the RI Life Index found availability of, and access to, safe and affordable housing is a significant concern and challenge for many Rhode Islanders.

“I’m excited that as a first step in activating the findings of the RI Life Index we are making investments that address the critical role of safe and affordable housing on the overall health and well-being of Rhode Islanders,” said BCBSRI President & CEO Kim Keck. “Extensive research shows that housing is a crucial factor influencing not only health outcomes, but also, significantly, school performance. Our company is proud to support organizations making a difference for Rhode Island families by addressing this critical need.”

Recipients of BCBSRI’s end-of-year grants include Housing Network of Rhode Island; Crossroads Rhode Island; HousingWorks RI;  The Village Common; and Family Service of Rhode Island.