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Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund

It is times like this when philanthropy can lean into its leadership role and unite our community for the greater good. At the Community Foundation, we are responding to the uncertainty with proactive action and collaboration.

The Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund, activated by the Community Foundation and the Emergency Management Alliance of Central Virginia, is providing rapid support to community organizations and public agencies that are meeting the needs of individuals and families most affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The fund is designed to be flexible in focus as needs change over time, and to complement other resources and responses at the national, state and local levels.

As a community, we will get through this…together. It’s how we have overcome challenges of the past, and it’s how we will build resiliency for the future. Our goal is to do the most good for the most people in our region. We are working collaboratively to be sure we’re leveraging everyone’s generosity and expertise to meet as many needs as possible.

How the Fund Works

This fund was created with flexibility to support multiple phases of funding, focused on meeting acute response needs and recovery over the longer-term. The fund initially addressed emergency response strategies such as health services, shelter for the homeless, food access, and the procurement of procurement of food and safety supplies. However, as the region began to reopen for business, the fund expanded its scope to also address longer term recovery. In this category, requests are considered for eviction prevention and rental assistance, employment support services, and assistance to public school systems that enable continuation of virtual learning and/or the safe return of students to the classroom.

An advisory committee consisting of representatives from the philanthropic, business and public sectors will review and distribute grants from the fund.

How to Apply

The fund's advisory committee remains committed to moving resources quickly by reviewing requests on a rolling basis. In the final phase of review, grant applications will be considered by invitation only.

Eligibility is limited to 501c3 organizations and public entities based in or primarily serving the Central Virginia area as defined in the Grant FAQ. Priority will be given to organizations that are serving those most affected by the COVID pandemic and that have demonstrated an ability to deploy resources quickly, effectively and to scale their efforts.

If you are an individual seeking assistance, please visit 211 as a comprehensive source of locally curated social services. If you are a small business, you may wish to learn more about the Small Business Administration Disaster Loan Program.

Grant applications are currently being considered by invitation only.

How to Give

The Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund was created to collaboratively mobilize and organize as many resources as possible in times when our community needs it most. That time is now. As we learn more about the impact of the pandemic in our area, we know that many of our neighbors are struggling and they need our help. Join us to demonstrate that we are stronger together!

No administrative fees will be deducted from gifts to this fund, ensuring your full gift amount will directly support community organizations and initiatives.

  • Donate online – Credit cards gifts can be made through our secure online donation portal.
  • Donate by check – Make checks payable to the Community Foundation and send to our secure lockbox at P.O. Box 76495, Baltimore, MD 21275-6495. Please note “Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund” in the memo line.
  • Donate securities or other assets, or make a recommendation from your donor advised fund – Please contact us here.


Other Ways to Help


  • Volunteer your time – HandsOn Greater Richmond is working closely with organizations providing essential services. Visit the website to learn how you can help through in-person or virtual volunteering.


Founding Contributors

Thank you for your support

The COVID-19 Response Fund is the first activation of a regional emergency management and disaster response fund established through a partnership between the Community Foundation and the Emergency Management Alliance of Central Virginia. Launched with an initial gift from the Community Foundation in March 2020, the fund has grown in to $6.8 million with gifts from a cross-section of individuals, private foundations, corporations and other generous donors of the region. Many thanks to the following founding contributors that helped seed the fund:

Foundation and Community partners: The Cabell Foundation, Community Foundation for a greater Richmond, Humana Foundation, Jenkins Foundation, Mary Morton Parsons Foundation, Richmond Memorial Health Foundation, Robins Foundation, Rotary Club of Richmond, Bob & Anna Lou Schaberg Foundation, United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg and their donors, VCU Health System

Business partners: Altria, Atlantic Union Bank, Bank of America, Capital One, CarMax Foundation, Dominion Energy, Facebook, Genworth, Markel, Wells Fargo, West Cary Group

Local Government partners:  The Emergency Management Alliance of Central Virginia (representing 25 localities in Richmond and Central Virginia)

Media partner: NBC12

See a full list of contributors

Grant Results


The Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund has awarded hundreds of grants to local nonprofit organizations thanks to the collective generosity of community members in the Richmond region and beyond. See a full list of grants with descriptions here.

We also shared stories throughout the year to offer insight into the needs that emerged from the pandemic and the incredible response of our local nonprofit partners in addressing those needs. Please see a sampling below.


The Critical State of Childcare during COVID-19 

Read how FRIENDS Association for Children continues to innovate to keep their children healthy, safe and cared for, and how the childcare sector is planning new strategies to bring stability to this vitally important industry.



Bridging the Digital Divide in Schools through the COVID-19 Response Fund 

The Response Fund and individual Community Foundation donors have granted over $1.16 million to bridge the digital divide in ten local school districts.


Food Access

Healthy Food Access during COVID-19 

Shalom Farms and Greater Richmond Fit4Kids both focus on food access and health education, and they are finding innovative ways to continue serving our community during this time.


Thousands of Volunteers Support RPS Meals Program 

When school buildings closed in March as a precaution against COVID-19, RPS knew they needed a system to ensure kids still have access to the food they need – and thousands of volunteers are stepping up to help.



Daily Planet Builds Strategies for Homeless Healthcare Delivery during COVID-19  

Many of the clients at Daily Planet Health Services are experiencing homelessness, which presents unique challenges to administering care during this health crisis. Preventing outbreaks at homeless shelters continues to be a top priority.


Cross-Sector Coalition Crafts Thousands of Masks for Richmond Community 

When health officials began advising the use of protective face masks to slow the spread of COVID-19, many individuals and agencies had difficulty finding or affording the masks they needed. In response, businesses, nonprofit staff, universities, and thousands of volunteers across the region stepped up to create and source masks for our community.


Mental Health Services Expand for Students in Powhatan Despite Pandemic 

Although the clinic has yet to see any COVID-19 patients at this time, their services are needed more than ever.


Q&A with Dr. Vivian Bruzzese, CrossOver Healthcare Ministry

An infectious disease specialist who serves as the Director of HIV Programs with CrossOver, Dr. Vivian Bruzzese shares what her position entails and how CrossOver is responding to the needs of their clients during the COVID-19 pandemic.



Looming Eviction Crisis Accelerates Regional Collaboration 

Led by Partnership for Housing Affordability and ACTS, a new collaborative effort is underway to provide emergency rental assistance to those facing possible eviction in the wake of COVID-19.


Latino Community

Cross-Sector Initiative Aids Local Latinx Community

Latinx communities across the U.S. are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19—and CDC Leaders have found that the cross-sector supportive approach being taken in Richmond is a model for the rest of the country, when dealing with vulnerable communities.


Sacred Heart Center: Supporting the Latino Community during COVID-19

Even though many local nonprofits are limiting on-site programs as part of their COVID-19 precautions, Sacred Heart Center is still finding creative ways to support Richmond’s Latino community. 

Contact Us

For general inquiries, contact us at or 804-330-7400.

For media inquiries, contact us at or 804-409-5603.