It may be a cliché, however the Foundation’s existence and the work of the staff has never been more important. Like most communities across the world, our healthcare system is under stress, our vulnerable populations are worried, and our businesses face uncertainty.
We have organized our self around actions to address immediate health and human needs and start planning for the future. I could not be prouder of the Foundation, its staff, the heroes within our community, and the amazing generosity of our supporters.
The following is a summary of current planned response activities and actions:
- Office is closed office; staff is working full-time remotely on on-going projects and COVID-19 response initiatives.
- We have aligned and prioritized the operation for immediate coronavirus community response and support. Including:
- Expanded Good Neighbor Fund family/individual emergency assistance
- Updated Nonprofit Emergency Grants process for health and human services nonprofits
- Ongoing outreach and assessment of food banks, clinics, and meals for students while they are out of school
- Expanded internet access for school aged kids
- Organized local small business and entrepreneur support
- Community, board, and donors’ communications
- We created the local Coronavirus Response Fund, which has raised $80k+ to date, focused on three emergency funding areas, including:
- Additional money for the Good Neighbor Fund (including behavioral health treatment costs)
- Fund emergency health and human service nonprofits grants; for example:
- Rural medical clinics
- Food banks
- Schools to feed free and reduced meal kids
- Funds to help expanded internet access for school aged kids
- The Board formed Emergency Grants Committee to provide oversight and transparency for the above listed expenditures.
- Members include Sara Bachman (Grants Committee Chair), Dan Jansen (Investment & Finance Committee Chair) and Jesse Johnson (Executive Committee Member).
- We have created coronavirus response resource page, which provides information for direct support or directs people to other resources In English and Spanish.
- Staff is working with Towns of Telluride and Mountain Village on rent payment delays for vulnerable residents of VCA and Shandoka.
- We have been coordinating with Tri-County Health Network, which is serving as the point of contact for all volunteering and volunteer needs in the region.
- We have formed a Local Business Recovery Council to help organize information flow, structure resources help, and provide a unified voice for local small businesses.
- Members include Richard Betts, Danny Craft and Bonnie Watson (Capital & Transaction Advisor)
- Paul Major is serving on the Governor’s state-wide “Help Colorado Now” council. I have now been asked to be on the executive committee and the grants committee, which will allow me to be more involved in the decision-making of how state funds are distributed throughout the state, particularly southwest and rural Colorado.