More than 120 south Island charitable organizations are getting a hand up, thanks to targeted donations and specific funds overseen by the Victoria Foundation.
The foundation’s Community Recovery Program has distributed nearly $2.4 million to 126 organizations hard hit financially by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grants provide general operating funds that allow these federally registered charities and other qualified recipients to continue offering services to the community.
From allowing theatre companies to find safe ways to keep audiences and artists connected, to helping transition Indigenous people into housing and maintain it, the funds impact the community in various ways.
Fran Hunt-Jinnouchi, executive director of the Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness, said the grant to her group is crucial as COVID-19 has increased the urgency to get people into housing, which in turn intensified their workload.
“Our goal is to help Indigenous people maintain their housing within the context of pathways to healing and recovery; thus, this grant is important in this process,” she said in a release.
Organizations supported specialize in areas ranging from the environment and mental health to homelessness and racial equity.
More than $750,000 of the total distributed came from donations to the foundation’s new Community Action Funds or from donor-advised funds. The community funds allow donors to target specific issues, including pandemic recovery through the Rapid Relief Fund.
The Victoria Foundation plans to continue evaluating community funding opportunities as the pandemic evolves. Donations to the Community Action Funds can be made at victoriafoundation.bc.ca/community-recovery-program. For a list of 2020 grant recipients, visit victoriafoundation.bc.ca.