News May 1, 2020

Partners announce latest round of Greater Cleveland COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund grant recipients

CLEVELAND (May 1, 2020) – The Greater Cleveland COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund coalition announced today its latest round of grants to support the nonprofit community, which continues to face unprecedented challenges during the ongoing pandemic. In total, $507,000 was awarded to 14 organizations and groups serving Cuyahoga, Lake and Geauga counties. Since the Fund’s creation in mid-March, partners have granted more than $3.8 million to 65 nonprofit groups and organizations. This week’s grantees are:

Food & Shelter

  • Cleveland Chesed Center ($25,000): To continue to provide food, including kosher options, via drive-through distribution to financially vulnerable families in Cuyahoga and surrounding counties.
  • Denison Avenue United Church of Christ ($25,000): To provide food, shelter, counseling and therapy for unsheltered individuals on Cleveland’s near west side.
  • Grace C&MA Church ($25,000): To provide assistance with medication and grocery acquisition and delivery, including cleaning supplies, toiletries and other basic needs for at-risk populations in Middleburg Heights.
  • Little Africa Food Collaborative ($47,000): To deliver the needed equipment, supplies, information and most importantly food to seniors, mentally and physically disabled residents and homeless populations on Cleveland’s near east side.
  • McKinley Community Outreach Center ($20,000): To provide food and basic needs items for underserved, low-income individuals in western Lake County.
  • Cleveland Kosher Food Pantry ($25,000): To meet the increased demand for food deliveries among seniors and low-income families in eastern Cuyahoga County.
  • Smart Development Inc. ($50,000): To provide food, basic needs items, language translation and shelter for new immigrants, people of color, and refugees in Cuyahoga County.
  • St. Herman’s FOCUS Cleveland ($25,000): To purchase additional supplies to better protect shelter residents and staff, including cleaning supplies and personal protective equipment, and to provide emergency and transitional housing assistance for unsheltered men in Cleveland.
  • St. Paul’s Community Outreach ($22,000): To provide funding to assist with utility bills, home repairs, food and employment services for at-risk and low-income residents in the Ohio City and Detroit Shoreway neighborhoods on Cleveland’s near west side.
  • Thea Bowman Center ($25,000): To provide food deliveries to at-risk seniors, and to accommodate the increase in general food bank needs for residents in Cleveland’s Mt. Pleasant neighborhood.
  • Union Miles Development Corporation ($50,000): To assist the Little Africa Food Collaborative with food and crisis preparation kit distribution throughout the Union-Miles, Harvard and Mt. Pleasant communities.

Behavioral Health

  • Beech Brook ($47,000): To continue to provide mental and behavioral health services via telehealth solutions to low-income individuals and children in Cleveland.
  • New Directions, Inc. ($27,000): To continue providing residential and recovery housing, as well as intensive outpatient and recovery services for individuals and their families seeking substance use recovery and mental health assistance in Cuyahoga, Lake and Geauga counties.
  • Recovery Resources ($94,000): To continue providing services via telehealth including assessments, individual and group therapy, psychiatry, nursing, prevention and employment support, while increasing access to food, for residents in Cuyahoga County seeking assistance with mental illness, alcoholism, drug and other addictions.

Overall contributions to the Rapid Response Fund now total more than $8.1 million from 70 different corporate, civic and philanthropic partners, including individuals and families across the region. New funding partners (since April 24) include Catch Meaning Fund; Pam Conover and Jon Adams; Barbara and Peter Galvin; The Meisel and Pesses Families; and Sandy and Tim Wuliger. Funding partners urge other foundations, corporate entities, individuals and organizations to contribute to the fund via, where you can also view a list of partners to date. Donations of any amount are welcomed, and all contributions are tax deductible.

After today’s announcement, the Rapid Response Fund will transition to biweekly grantmaking, with the next round slated for Friday, May 15. As state and local officials begin to implement the Responsible RestartOhio plan, the new cadence will give grantmaking staff time to collect better and deeper information from community partners, leverage and complement Fund resources with those of other sectors and make even more targeted grants with an eye toward scale. This change of pace is a pilot for now, as learning continues in real-time as to how the Fund can most effectively support those organizations working on the frontlines as our communities begin to re-emerge and navigate what’s next together.

The partners still plan to continue to make grants through June, with the potential to extend grant opportunities as needed and as additional funding resources become available through new partners joining the effort. Frontline nonprofits that have pressing needs related to the COVID-19 crisis response should email to receive more information about the streamlined funding process. The funding collaborative will continue to identify potential grantee partners, solicit guidance on proposed projects from community advisors and recommend final awards. Organizations that have already submitted funding requests will remain in consideration for future grant distributions until further notice.

Based upon the charitable structure of the Rapid Response Fund, grants are limited to 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, groups fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, or other charitable organizations able to receive a tax-deductible contribution, such as schools, faith-based organizations and other public entities. The partners are not able to fund individuals or businesses directly, labor unions, or other 501(c)(4), 501(c)(5) and 501(c)(6) organizations.

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