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Hello Tom,

Been a while. Hope all is well despite COVID-19. Your cousins to the south here have also jumped into the COVID-19 fray. We have done the following:
1) Activated our previously established Natural Disaster Assistance Program that is administered by the City of Rockford to assist individuals in need as a result of a natural disaster.
2) Joined in a coalition with our United Way, another sizable private foundation, a nonprofit capacity building organization, and a community convener to brainstorm and coordinate our community's response to the crisis.
3) Part of this is promoting and helping administer an Emerging Needs Fund that our local United Way established to collect donations and meet some of the immediate needs of individuals through nonprofit orgs. We're contributing $67,000 to that for the time being.
4) The coalition is looking at ways to support a longer-term recovery phase as we start to turn the corner. This will probably focus on replacing lost revenue and supporting additional expenses brought on by COVID-19.
5) We're hosting a Zoom webinar for our nonprofits next week. We'll share some info but it's mostly an opportunity for them to connect with each other and let us know what their greatest challenges are, etc.
6) With our current grantees, we are freely offering reporting deadline extensions, event rescheduling, timeline revisions, evaluation plan revisions, and looking at removing restrictions on defined purpose grants on a case-by-case basis.

We are working from home as well and I've never been busier!! Best of luck on all your efforts!

Original Post by Tom Linfield

COVID Grantmaking

Hi Folks,

Everyone scrambling as fast to deal with COVID era grantmaking as we are in Madison? I'd love to hear what others are doing. Here are few things we've done at MCF:

1) All remaining Community Impact and Field of Interest funds are being focused on helping agencies deal with new priorities as dictated by COVID circumstances.

2) Grantees have been invited to submit revised action plans/outcomes if they need to repurpose their grant (our grantmaking committee will then have 24 hrs to affirm the change via email)

3) We've worked with our United Way to help them raise basic needs/social services funds

4) We've started our own COVID fund to gather money for non-social service needs (arts, environment, learning, public libraries, etc). Right now just a place for people to donate. We're not actively fundraising yet because we don't want to compete with the United Way fund. We'll likely use some of our own unrestricted funding to seed it.

5) We've contracted with a law firm to offer webinars, work sessions and one-on-one consultation to help nonprofits learn about, and apply for, all the stimulus money, federal and state aid, etc.

6) We're all working remotely.

Hope you're all doing ok, staying sane and healthy, and finding time for your own balance. This is pretty emotionally taxing. In phone call after phone call with fragile non-profits I feel like I'm in a confessional. Don't forget to find time for yourselves – read a juicy novel, binge watch something, bake a cake, make some art, listen to album (turned up to 11!).