What Can You Do to Respond to the COVID-19 Crisis?
In times like these when we’re all wrestling with uncertainty, it helps to remember that we are all in this together. Our team is working closely with local and regional partners, including Whatcom Unified Command, to anticipate and monitor local needs – both short and long term. Each day we focus on connecting the people, ideas, and resources that our community needs most right now.
How You Can Help Our Neighbors:
Contribute to the Resilience Fund – the community’s bounce-back fund. It’s here to help anyone and everyone —individuals, families, nonprofits, businesses—recover from a crisis or disaster through a combination of emergency preparedness investments and response funding.
We grateful to the Lhaq’temish Foundation, the community foundation of the Lummi people, for their partnership in the Resilience Fund. We’re also staying in close communication with the Chuckanut Health Foundation, United Way of Whatcom County and the Mount Baker Foundation so that critical resources are available when and where they’re needed.
About the Resilience Fund
The Resilience Fund is helping nonprofits that are working on the frontlines of COVID-19 response, helping our community’s most vulnerable people with emergency assistance, such as financial support, healthcare, and childcare.
The first round of grants prioritizes the communities listed below, all of whom are disproportionately impacted by this crisis:
– Children and families, elders and those with compromised immune systems and/or disabilities
– Residents without health insurance or access to sick days
– Communities of color and residents with limited English language proficiency
– Economically vulnerable people, or those impacted by reduced and lost work
– People at risk of intimate violence
In order to move resources quickly without further burdening organizations already delivering critical services and support, we are not currently hosting a formal application process.
Over the last few weeks our team has been working hard to support the people in our community who are already experiencing challenges during this crisis. For many, these are familiar challenges amplified by COVID-19. Our priority has been to raise money and get it out the door as quickly as possible to meet pressing needs. So far, we have granted more than $320,000 to community organizations who are helping our neighbors with housing, childcare, healthcare, family support services, food security, meals for seniors, small business assistance and other emergent needs.
Our team is working closely with Whatcom Unified Command and with the Chuckanut Health Foundation and United Way of Whatcom County, our partners in the Whatcom Center for Philanthropy, to ensure that together we are meeting the most important needs of our neighbors in a coordinated and strategic way.
Grants are made on a rolling basis. As fundraising continues through the next phases of emergency response and recovery, the Resilience Fund will adapt to changing needs.
Stay Home, Stay Healthy – Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed a statewide order that requires everyone in the state to stay home until May 4.
– Requires every Washingtonian to stay home unless they need to pursue an essential activity.
– Bans all gatherings for social, spiritual and recreational purposes.
– Closes all businesses except essential businesses.
The proclamation states it’s still safe for people to go outside as long as they remain at least six feet from each other. Grocery stores, doctor’s offices and other essential businesses will remain open. People can still participate in activities such as bike rides, gardening, and dog walking — as long as they follow social distancing rules.
Give blood! The blood supply in the Pacific Northwest in currently in very high demand. Book your appointment here.
Support local businesses – Sustainable Connections has some tips for how you can help ensure that Whatcom County’s local business community is still here when the current public health crisis subsides.
Remember that we are all in this together – Racism, xenophobia and other biases cause harm – emotional, physical and economic – and undermine our ability to minimize the impacts of the virus. People of Asian descent are no more likely to contract or carry the virus than anyone else. And yet, people of or appearing to be of Asian descent are experiencing discrimination and abuse. You can play an important role in ensuring that everyone who lives here knows we’re all in this together.
Additional Community Resources:
Whatcom Unified Command Website with COVID-19 Resources
Business Continuity Resources – WWU Small Business Development Center