NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — United Way of Greater Nashville is requesting support from any who can manage to help out those who are now out of work due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Anybody interested in helping can donate to the COVID-19 Response Fund. All of these funds will go directly to nonprofit organizations. Through the nonprofits, the funds will go to individuals who have been impacted by wage loss because of the coronavirus.
The COVID-19 Response Fund is led by Mayor John Cooper, as well as philanthropic, corporate and government partners. It will deploy resources to community-based organizations to offer emergency assistance. This includes rent/mortgage, utilities, food and direct financial assistance to those who are in need.
"Government programs can only go so far," said President and CEO of United Way of Greater Nashville Brian Hassett. "It's up to us to take care of our neighbors, to lift them up when they cannot. Unemployment is spiking. Paying rent and utilities, getting food and finding basics like diapers is tougher than ever before. We owe it to each other to show up."
Thanks to gifts from the Frist Foundation, the Nashville Convention and Visitors Corporation, as well as Music City Center, the fund currently has just over $2 million. United Way says, though, that the need is vast and those funds are already dwindling.
This first round of grants was distributed to five organizations that are working directly with individuals. They are the Salvation Army, NeedLink Nashville, Catholic Charities, Martha O'Bryan Center, Conexion Americas and Rooftop Nashville. United Way says the committee will review applications and push funds out to the community as quickly as possible.
"Just days after the Fund was activated, individual donations began to pour in. But we know that these funds go quickly," said Hassett. "Our neighbors are suffering; they don't know how they will provide for their families. We desperately need community support. All gifts - big or small - will make a real difference for those who are struggling: the servers, the musicians, the moms and dads who have kids to feed."
To contribute to the COVID-19 Response Fund, you can visit the COVID-19 Response Fund website, or text NashvilleUnited to 41444. As funds are distributed, United Way will publish the receiving agencies, the help they can provide and contact information on the COVID-19 Response Fund website.