An Update From the President & CEO: SWVA COVID-19 Relief
The global pandemic has impacted every individual in our region in one way or another. Members of our team, leaders of the COVID-19 Advisory Council, and trusted partners are fighting alongside each of you to bring relief to our friends and neighbors who need it the most. We know that the crisis will have a significant detrimental impact in Southwest Virginia, especially on the ALICE population.
Although the fight has been lengthy, it is not over yet. We are continuing to make strides in Southwest Virginia, and are proud to share these updates:
- To date, we have secured about $325,000 for COVID-19 relief efforts in Southwest Virginia. The relief efforts have been supported by individuals, foundations, and companies. If you are considering making a gift, you may make a gift online.
- $100,000 in food vouchers has been distributed across every locality we serve through a partnership with Feeding Southwest Virginia. One recipient of a food voucher at a local pantry shared this:
- Recognizing the need for access to the internet during the crisis, The council is co-investing $25,000 with a $30,800 grant from AEP to develop public/private partnerships to increase the number of wi-fi hotspots across the region.
- The council has set aside $5,000 for each locality to provide assistance that is not currently met with existing governmental resources. The total pool of $85,000 will be available to Southwest Virginia families beginning in June.
- We recently shared a COVID-19 Southwest Virginia Resource Guide that you can download and share.
- Both the Childhood Success and Youth Success departments pivoted immediately to deliver initiatives, training and resources virtually. The Childhood Success team is providing countless hours of technical assistance to our childcare center owners as they navigate the major disruption to their business. Our team is also providing much needed sanitizing supplies and personal protective equipment to centers.
- Youth Success has developed virtual internship opportunities for students for summer employment with Southwest Virginia organizations and businesses. They are also developing an exciting new opportunity which we will share more about soon!
We are so grateful for each member of the COVID-19 Advisory Council. Co-Chaired by Tommy Casteel and Mike Quillen, the 20 member council is working hard to provide resources needed to get people back on their feet and back to work.
Together, we will continue to bring the necessary immediate and long-term relief to our most vulnerable citizens in Southwest Virginia.
United we fight. United we win.
United Way of Southwest Virginia fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in Southwest Virginia because they are the building blocks for a good quality of life. Through an initiative-based cradle-to-career approach, United Way of Southwest Virginia is creating sustainable solutions to address the challenges facing tomorrow’s workforce. United Way convenes cross-sector partners to make an impact on the most complex problems in our region. Through collaboration with government, business, nonprofit and individuals, United Way innovates for positive, lasting social change. With a footprint that covers nearly 20% of the state of Virginia, United Way of Southwest Virginia programs and initiatives serve the counties of Bland, Buchanan, Carroll, Dickenson, Floyd, Giles, Grayson, Lee, Montgomery, Pulaski, Russell, Scott, Smyth, Tazewell, Washington, Wise, and Wythe, and the cities of Bristol, Galax, Norton, and Radford.