Greene County United Way Executive Director MaChal Forbes said 2020 has shown our community two things: the world as we know it can shift in an instant and how valuable Greene County nonprofits and their services are to our community.
To address the needs of local nonprofits during these unprecedented times, the Community Foundation of Greene County and the Greene County United Way have partnered to provide relief funding for local nonprofit organizations through an Emergency Response Fund.
The fund, created March 19, assists local nonprofits that are experiencing immediate, short-term or long-term effects in response to the pandemic. To date, the fund has received $129,777 from donors and has awarded $105,285 to 26 local nonprofits. The nonprofits include:
- Salvation Army / Greene County Service Center Comprehensive Services
- Corner Cupboard Food Bank / Operational Support
- Domestic Violence Services of Southwestern Pa / Keeping Domestic Violence Survivors Safe
- Greene Arc / Psychiatric Rehabilitation Services
- Teddy Bear Care, Inc. / Corona Crisis Fund
- The Washington Hospital Foundation / PPE for WHS Greene
- TRPIL / Taking Care of Our Direct Care Workers
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Pittsburgh / One to One Mentoring in Greene County During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Carmichaels Senior Citizens, Inc. / Senior Center Emergency Fund
- Dress for Success Pittsburgh / Specialty Work Wear for Essential Healthcare and Food Service Workers
- Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Pittsburgh / Counseling at Greene County Outreach
- Washington Greene Job Training Program / SCWDB Board PA CareerLink Greene County COVID-19 Emergency Response Remediation
- Pennsylvania Elks Major Projects, Inc. / Support Service for Persons with Disabilities
- Greene County Historical Society / GCHS Virtual Educational Programming
- Blueprints / Waynesburg Senior Community Center Site
- Coalition for a Brighter Greene / Ray of Light
- Greene County Regional Police Department / Pandemic Response
- Cornerstone Care / COVID-19 Contact Tracing Project
- Children’s Bible Ministries of SWPA / COVID-19 Thermometers
- Eva K. Bowlby Public Library / Emergency Response Fund Grant
- Flenniken Public Library / COVID-19 Readiness
- Greene Arc / Psychiatric Rehabilitation part 2
- Waynesburg University / Waynesburg University PPE
- 2nd Sam 9 / COVID-19 Reopening
- Blueprints / Waynesburg Senior Community Center part 2
- Greene County Chamber of Commerce / Re-Invent Greene
Community Foundation of Greene County Executive Director Bettie Stammerjohn said they wanted to make sure the basic needs of the community were able to be met and that nonprofits had the ability to do that.
“There’s expenses that they for sure weren’t expecting, and we knew that was going to happen, so that’s why we started the fund to be able to help those nonprofits through this period,” Stammerjohn said. “Whether it’s to buy PPE’s or help [financially] because now a nonprofit is experiencing a loss of income, because they can’t do fundraising and they still have to keep their space open to provide certain services.”
Local nonprofits can apply to the fund by filling out the application on CFGC’s website.
The Emergency Response Fund Committee, consisting of Greene County business and community leaders, will then review the application and decide whether or not a grant will be distributed.
Stammerjohn said their application is easy to fill out; however, they are looking for two essential components.
“What we’re looking for are: ‘how is this serving Greene County residents?’ and ‘how is this impacted by COVID?’” she said.
The fund is not about starting a new program, Stammerjohn explained. The emergency fund is to
assist the existing organizations and the needs they have experienced in the wake of the pandemic.
MaChal said the Emergency Response Fund looks to assist these organizations because “as long as the agencies continue to provide their programs, the people in Greene County will continue to get the resources they need.”
Through these grants, the nonprofit organizations have been able to continue serving community members’ needs – mental health, food insecurity, financial stability and on-going education – while keeping themselves and their employees safe.
MaChal and Stammerjohn said they hope this fund will be able to be used for future emergencies, as well as current COVID-19 needs.
“We have no way to know how the Emergency Response Fund will be used in the future. But, I find it comforting to know if and when an emergency arises in our community, we will be able to take immediate action to help the people in Greene County,” MaChal said.
Stammerjohn emphasizes that the current success of the Emergency Response Fund and the future of the fund would not be possible without the community’s support.
“Without the people and the partnerships, I don’t think this would’ve had the impact it does … We’ve had organizations that have made significant contributions and we’ve had people make small contributions of $10-$20. Every little bit helps and we appreciate that,” Stammerjohn said.