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Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund raises $4.1M to date

APRIL 7, 2020 — The Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund, created by the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond and the Emergency Management Alliance of Central Virginia, has raised $4.1 million to date with support from 18 lead foundation and corporate partners, as well as generous donors in our region. 

But with the impact from the COVID-19 crisis likely to stretch out for weeks and months, the need is just beginning. Philanthropic organizations are coming together to raise money and are calling on local individuals and organizations to make donations. 

“The best way to get through this crisis is to do it together,” says Sherrie Armstrong, CEO of the Community Foundation. “That’s how we’ve overcome challenges of the past, and it’s how we will build resiliency for our future. As we gain greater understanding of the immediate effects of this public health crisis, while also anticipating what is yet to come, we are asking the community to help with a gift of any amount to the fund.”

United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg is providing $100,000 in matching dollars to incentivize new donations made through United Way’s website from individuals. Donors may also make gifts of cash, securities or other assets through the Community Foundation. 

“Bringing communities together to solve big problems is a fundamental part of who we are,” said James Taylor, president & CEO of United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg. “We don’t know what the future holds, but we do know local nonprofits and the vulnerable populations they serve need our help now. I believe the Central Virginia COVID-19 Fund is the best way to provide that help, but we need the entire community’s support. Please donate today.” 

The Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund is the first activation of a coordinated, regional disaster response campaign to mobilize and deploy as many resources as possible in times when the community needs them most. Currently, the COVID-19 Response Fund is looking to provide rapid support to nonprofit organizations and public agencies providing health-related crisis response services and 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.

“Over the past year, we have worked closely with the Community Foundation to establish a regional disaster preparedness and response fund to ensure there would be a way for people to give if a disaster were to hit our region,” said Ben Ruppert, finance chair of the Emergency Management Alliance of Central Virginia. “That shared commitment to planning and coordination is paying off now as we come together to tackle a crisis at a scale few could have predicted.”

Informed by those with emergency management expertise and on-the-ground insight, an advisory committee is currently reviewing requests and will plan to announce an early round of grants soon. The fund will be used initially to support essential services such as health care, housing, food access, childcare and senior care. They are also working with schools and government agencies to support the procurement of food and safety supplies for scaled distribution. 

Learn more about the Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund and make your contribution at

COVID-19 Response Fund Founding Contributors

  • Foundation and Community Partners: The Cabell Foundation, the Community Foundation for a greater Richmond, Jenkins Foundation, Mary Morton Parsons Foundation, Richmond Memorial Health Foundation, Robins Foundation, United Way of Greater Richmond & Petersburg, VCU Health System
  • Business Partners: Altria, Atlantic Union Bank, Bank of America, Capital One, CarMax Foundation, Dominion Energy, Genworth, Markel, Wells Fargo
  • Local Government Partners:  Emergency Management Alliance of Central Virginia, which represents 25 localities in Central Virginia

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