Building Community Resilience
The Community Foundation has granted $543,426 to 37 local agencies since the pandemic was declared in March. And more funding will be granted this Fall.
COVID-19 has affected all facets of society. The impact on charities and the people they serve were significant and immediate; and will certainly continue into the foreseeable future.
The Community Foundation for Kingston & Area has been (and will be) there to help understand and respond to emerging community needs.
COVID-19 grants to date (as of September 1, 2020)
Spring Community Grants
(3 projects totalling $31,411)
When COVID-19 restrictions were announced, it became clear that community needs would change significantly. We made the difficult decision to put our regular granting on hold even though reviews had already been completed. Normally funding dozens of projects, we chose to fund only three projects that, by their nature, remained relevant and would help respond to increased needs caused by the pandemic. The three projects funded addressed the issues of food security, seniors’ isolation, and the transition of services to remote delivery.
Government of Canada Emergency Community Support Fund
(29 projects totalling $413,720)
In April 2020 the Government of Canada announced the $350 million Emergency Community Support Fund (ECSF) to be delivered through Community Foundations of Canada, United Way Centraide Canada and the Canadian Red Cross. CKFA applied to participate and was allocated $413,720 to grant locally to meet the immediate needs of vulnerable populations magnified by COVID-19.
We worked quickly to launch a call for proposals, and our volunteer grant review teams evaluated 68 grant applications with funding requests totalling $1.6 million. Working in close communication with the local United Way to ensure no duplication of funding, collectively our two organizations granted over $1.2 million in federal funding locally.
Regina Rosen Food First Fund Grants
(9 grants totalling $9,000)
Emergency meal providers were hit with an increased demand as they were also dealing with new logistical challenges and safety precautions. Local agencies responded quickly to these changing requirements, changing their operations to provide take-out meals. To facilitate their efforts, we disbursed available funding through the Regina Rosen Food First Fund immediately.
Click here to see list of Food First Fund grants. In addition to those listed, we provide an emergency grant of $1,000 to the North Frontenac Food Bank when we learned that their pantry was running low.
Supporting Summer Camps
($25,000 to the Boys & Girls Club of Kingston & Area)
When restrictions lifted making summer camps possible, the Boys & Girls Club of Kingston & Area rose to the challenge of how to provide safe summer day camps for kids. To help make summer camps possible this year, the Foundation awarded $25,000 from its three existing recreation focused funds (The Marion and John Dunn Fund, the Bill and Gladys Kelly Community Fund, and the Ontario Endowment for Children and Youth in Recreation Fund).
Smart & Caring Community Fund Grants
(6 grants totalling $20,200)
Our Smart & Caring Community Fund was purposefully designed to be nimble and flexible to get money to where it was needed most in our community. During this unprecedented time, the Foundation acted swiftly to enable this fund to support our community’s response to, and recovery from, the effects of COVID-19.
It further enabled some targeted granting from this fund outside of the Foundation’s regular competitive granting cycle to get funds where they would have immediate impact.
Funded projects include:
- Community Living North Frontenac ($2,700) to develop a peer led mini COVID workshop
- Epilepsy South Eastern Ontario ($1,500) to purchase cell phones needed for staff to work remotely
- KFL&A Children & Youth Services Planning Committee ($5,000) to have Resolve Counselling Services provide services and resources to support member agencies in their return to work after COVID. (We are proud of this very strategic investment as it is a small investment which has a big impact on an entire sector. This one grant will benefit staff and managers in over 50 local agencies that provide services to children, youth and families. Read about this project that is all about supporting those who support us.
- Resolve Counselling Services Canada ($5,000) to implement a Virtual Walk in Counselling Service
- Sexual Assault Centre Kingston ($3,000*) for staff training and purchase of needed equipment provide support virtually (*matching funds provided through the Fearless Generosity Fund)
- St. Vincent de Paul Society of Kingston ($3,000) for emergency purchase of new fridge to safely store food to provide take out lunches
Donor Directed Funds
(grants totalling $44,095)
Some of our donors and fundholders contacted us when the pandemic first hit for advice on how they could best help. In the first few weeks, our response was to hold tight: immediate needs were being met by other funding sources, but we knew needs would emerge. When they did, we reached back out and our donors responded!
Thank you to some individual anonymous donors, the Cameron & Laurie Thompson Fund, the Jim & Julie Parker Fund, the Thompson & Beaman Fund, and the Anglican Diocese of Ontario Foundation Fearless Generosity Fund who made the following grants possible:
- Isthmus ($2,848) to support food delivery to students and families during COVID
- Kingston Frontenac Public Library ($14,399) to establish a wireless internet hot spot and a tablet lending program
- Lionshearts ($2,848) to provide meals to those in need
- Resolve Counselling Services ($1,250) so that they could receive the full funding request to support their integrated multi-service clinic
- Sexual Assault Centre Kingston ($3,000*) for staff training and purchase of needed equipment provide support virtually (*matching grant from the Fearless Generosity Fund)
- St. Lawrence Youth Association 9,750 to provide access to specialized counselling services to three local youth who otherwise would not have been able to receive needed support
- YMCA of Eastern Ontario ($10,000) to support their safe re-opening
With more grants to come…
Our Fall 2020 Granting Round has been launched. Understanding that demands will be high and charities are already stretched responding the new challenges caused by COVID, we streamlined the granting process. Application forms are shorter, and the funds will be dispersed sooner (November 2020). In addition, applicants can apply for funds to support operations (ordinarily, operational grants are not eligible for funding).
The Community Foundation has been supporting community well-being for 25 years, and we will continue to be here to support local charities and the people and causes they serve during these challenging times – and beyond.
A big thank you to all our donors – big and small – who make all this possible!