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Donations still sought for COVID-19 Response Fund, grant applications for nonprofits available

Fri, Apr 3rd 2020 11:00 am

The COVID-19 Response Fund for Cattaraugus County has raised almost $30,000 in donations, but additional donations are still being sought to meet increasing needs from nonprofits.

Since a group of local funding organizations, including the Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation, Dr. Lyle F. Renodin Foundation and the United Way of Cattaraugus County created a centralized fund, COVID-19 Response Fund for Cattaraugus County, individuals and organizations have committed or donated nearly $30,000 to the fund to support nonprofits working on the front lines to help those impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Key donations to establish the fund came from CRCF, National Grid, United Way, the Renodin Foundation and several individuals.

In addition, Foundant Technologies has donated a new grant application software to help nonprofits quickly and easily apply for grants from the fund online.

“We are always amazed by the generosity of this community, and this is yet another example,” said CRCF Executive Director Karen Niemic Buchheit. “As soon as the call for donations was put out we saw individuals and organizations stepping up to help those who need it during this difficult time.”

Nonprofits working on the front lines to support Cattaraugus County residents impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak can now apply for grants from the COVID -19 Response Fund for Cattaraugus County.

The online grant application can be found and completed at cattfoundation.org/covid-19-response-fund.

Priorities for funding include:

  • General operational support
  • Flexible funds to help individuals and families
  • Food security
  • Housing
  • Service for older adults
  • Child care services
  • Mental health and wellbeing
  • Other basic human needs

Priority will also be given to applications that demonstrate high levels of collaboration between organizations in their efforts.

Individuals will not be eligible to receive grants due to the charitable restrictions of the fund. Grants will be limited to 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations and charitable organizations that receive tax-deductible contributions, including schools, government organizations, faith-based organizations and other public entities.

Funding will take place in two phases, Buchheit added, with the first phase focusing on immediate needs and priorities and the second to support effort a return to normalcy for county residents and a restoration of affected organizations.

“We are amazed and humbled by the support that has been provided to this effort so far,” Buchheit said. “We know that this work will be some of the most important we have ever done, so our fundraising efforts will continue.

“But now we are ready to turn our attention to giving our nonprofits the support they need to help those that are being impacted,” she continued.

Applications for grants from the first phase of funding will be due Friday, April 10. After the initial round of grants are made, funding will be released on a rolling basis.

“We are already seeing that organizations are losing revenue due to the cancellation of fundraising events and normal programming,” said Buchheit. “As the spread of the virus begins to subside there will be a need to help those organizations and ensure that they continue to serve the community.”

Donations can be made to the fund online at cattfoundation.org or mailed to the CRCF office at 301 North Union St., Suite 203, Olean, NY, 14760.  Checks should be made payable to CRCF/COVID-19 Fund. More information can be found at cattfoundation.org/covid-19-response-fund.

The Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation is the area’s supportive, responsive and trusted community foundation. Established in 1994, CRCF is growing good by connecting donors to the causes they care about most in the region. Grants from the foundation support many areas, including education, scholarships, health care, the arts, community development, human service, and youth development. To learn more, call (716) 301-CRCF (2723), email [email protected], or visit online at www.cattfoundation.org. CRCF is also on Facebook (facebook.com/cattfoundation) and Twitter (@CattFoundation).