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March 18, 2020 News

COVID-19 Grantmaking Announcement

The Weingart Foundation will be making an initial $1 million in direct response to the COVID-19 relief effort. These dollars will be distributed through pooled funds, primarily in partnership with community foundations throughout our Southern California service area. We will send information out shortly on these funds.

Our priorities for this funding are:

  • Emergency response funding for people experiencing homelessness
  • Emergency assistance to individuals and families impacted by the COVID-19 crisis
  • Operating support to community-based organizations serving and advocating for vulnerable populations impacted by the COVID-19 crisis

In addition to this targeted response, our Unrestricted Operating Support (U.O.S.) program continues to provide flexible funding to organizations and collaboratives working to meet essential needs, expand opportunity, and eliminate structural barriers to equity. Nonprofits will be able to use these dollars to help them adjust to the demands of the crisis. The Foundation is in the process of making plans to allocate approximately $4 million in U.O.S. grants between now and the end of our fiscal year in June, adding to the $12 million in unrestricted grants we’ve made to date this year.

We currently plan to maintain this commitment to providing U.O.S. in the upcoming fiscal year. Nonprofit partners have long shared that unrestricted, multi-year grants are the most effective form of funding. In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, we saw first-hand how groups used our unrestricted dollars to maintain essential infrastructure and sustain support to communities. The COVID-19 crisis requires the same approach, and we have urged our foundation colleagues to adopt or increase operating support grantmaking.

The Weingart Foundation is deeply grateful to the community organizations, first responders, frontline providers, and advocates for the work you are doing. We will continue to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and share any new developments in our approach. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to reach out to us with your questions or concerns.