As the community grapples with the negative impacts of the coronavirus, on the positive side, volunteering and giving have surged. Within the first few hours of the establishment of the Telluride Foundation Coronavirus Response Fund, donations started pouring in– of every size and from everywhere. To date, over 100 donors have given more than $500,000 to this Fund, as well as to a companion emergency assistance fund specifically for families in Ouray County. The Ouray County Response Fund was recently established and, with its dollar for dollar matching incentive, could generate $400,000 in emergency assistance for Ouray County families and individuals.
In the second week of the Coronavirus Regional Response Fund, five emergency nonprofit grants have been awarded totaling $102,000 and three are pending totaling $96,000. Recently awarded grants include $30,000 to Tri-County Health Network for additional staffing necessary to organize over 350 volunteers for community testing, food banks, and other needs and $2,000 to the regional WIC (Women, Infants and Children) food program. Pending grants include support for a reginal medical center and additional funding for food banks, which are experiencing a dramatic increase in demand and costs. Along with emergency grants, over 25 Good Neighbor Fund grants to vulnerable families and individuals in San Miguel, Ouray, and west Montrose counties, for everything from food, medicine, transportation and rent assistance, have been approved. In addition, San Miguel County is providing funding through the Good Neighbor Fund, specifically for who need help paying for mental health services.
The Coronavirus Regional Response Fund allows the Telluride Foundation to quickly respond to emergency requests and emerging needs as a result of the pandemic. The Response Fund priorities include: 1) hardship grants to individuals and families through the Good Neighbor Fund; 2) emergency grants to nonprofits, focusing on health and human service organizations that need to increase services due to COVID 19 grants; and 3) students needing internet access or infrastructure to participate in on-line learning.
For more on how to donate or information about resources, please visit the Telluride Foundation’s website: the Regional Response Fund donation page at https://telluridefoundation.org/responsefund/; community resources and how to apply, https://telluridefoundation.org/covid-19-community-resources/; or for more information about the Ouray County Response fund, https://telluridefoundation.org/ouray-county-response-fund/.