08 Apr 2020

Nearly $1 Million Tampa Bay Resiliency Fund Activated


April 6, 2020

CONTACT: Ann Marie Varga
Pinellas Community Foundation
Cell: (407) 399-3255 or amvarga@pinellascf.org


CLEARWATER, FL — A unique partnership has been launched to help the critical organizations that provide assistance to the most vulnerable of our local residents being affected by the COVID-19 public health crisis. The Tampa Bay Resiliency Fund (TBRF) is a new strategic collaboration of the Pinellas Community Foundation, Allegany Franciscan Ministries, Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg and United Way Suncoast with nearly $1 million of funding assistance available to nonprofit 501(c) organizations and governmental agencies.

The Tampa Bay Resiliency Fund also provides a trusted and reliable way to donate to recovery efforts and 100% of the funds collected thorough this effort will be directed to address immediate and mid- to long-term needs through the provision of grants to select nonprofits. Distribution of funds will be overseen through a collaborative process by the funding partners above to ensure the funds are distributed fairly and equitably to address the community’s most serious needs.

In addition to the nearly $1 million startup fund, the organizations will mutually collect donations and provide assistance through this resiliency initiative that will support organizations in Desoto, Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota counties.

Nonprofit 501(c) organizations and governmental agencies will be eligible to receive assistance.
Funding allocations will be prioritized generally among the following three categories: protection of human life, mitigation of additional harm, and strengthening nonprofits related to critical intervention services to the community. Here are examples of the priorities:

1. Protection of Human Life
• Emergency food, shelter and other basic needs
• Access to health care services for uninsured and under-insured clients

2. Mitigation of Additional Harm
• Strengthening community information systems related to safety during crisis (priority to bilingual information delivery)
• Increasing health system capacity through alternative quarantine locations (ex. providing lodging assistance upon hospital discharge when patient has no viable housing plan)
• Increasing access to telemedicine
• Providing necessary services to vulnerable and at-risk populations (ex. food delivery for elderly population)
• Critical legal aid services for vulnerable and at-risk populations

3. Strengthening Nonprofits Related to Critical Intervention Services to the Community
• Technology and other resources to allow an organization to continue providing critical services (ex. Supporting the work of 2-1-1 services to be provided remotely, supporting telemedicine for nonprofit mental health providers)
• Expansion of service capacity related to increased demand for direct services that aid the community during this COVID-19 crisis

By working together and pooling resources, these organizations are leveraging individual relationships and expertise to speed help to those who need it the most across our greater community. Pinellas Community Foundation is serving as the fiscal agent for this fund. For more information or to donate, visit www.pinellascf.org/TBRF.

Note to News Outlets: The following statements from each of the partner organizations are provided for your convenience. Graphics and video messages have been uploaded to Dropbox. These leaders are available for phone or virtual interviews and their contact information is included below.

Quotes and Contact Information:

“This public health crisis is having wide-reaching impact from immediate needs for individuals to long-term changes in how organizations will operate. Our goal is to help fill critical gaps that are unaddressed by federal, state and local government.”
Duggan Cooley, CEO
Pinellas Community Foundation
Cell: 727-254-7107

“As the world, our state, and local communities are turned sideways, many of our non-profit partners – and the historically vulnerable people we serve together – face unprecedented challenges. As a funder committed to social justice, we have a responsibility to support our community in every way we can. I’m grateful to join with other funders in a collaborative effort to address urgent issues and anticipated future needs of our communities.”
Eileen Coogan, President & CEO
Allegany Franciscan Ministries
Cell: 727-507-9668

“There can be no doubt that race and economic fragility compound the serious and sometimes deadly results of catastrophic events that impact people in our communities. This partnership and fund are designed to prioritize a response toward our most vulnerable neighbors. Our communities, cities, counties, and region require long-term systemic solutions to mitigate harm and accelerate recovery in response to these events.”
Randall H. Russell, President & CEO
Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg
Contact Karen Chassin at 727-244-2071 to reach Randall Russell.

“We are grateful for leadership and critical support that the Tampa Bay Resiliency Fund is providing our region and are honored to be a part of such an important and timely effort during this time of crisis. These are unprecedented times that require significant and immediate action. The Tampa Bay Resiliency Fund will directly and swiftly address the pressing needs of the most vulnerable families in our community impacted by this crisis. This includes food, emergency financial assistance, and essential worker child care.”
Jessica Muroff, CEO
United Way Suncoast
Contact Jim Gillen at 813-786-9632 to reach Jessica Muroff

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Background on the collaboration partners:

Pinellas Community Foundation
Pinellas Community Foundation (PCF) was founded in 1969. With over $100 million in charitable assets, PCF seeks effective solutions for Pinellas County’s most challenging social, environmental and educational issues, while supporting the advancement of arts and culture. PCF is the only charitable foundation providing donors with customizable giving opportunities to enhance the quality of life for Pinellas County residents. More than 262 charitable organizations have received $55 million in donor-funded grants to support their community programs. PCF’s mission is made possible thanks to the generosity of donors. For information, call 727-531-0058 or visit www.pinellascf.org.

Allegany Franciscan Ministries
Allegany Franciscan Ministries seeks to improve the overall health of individuals and communities. A member of Trinity Health, Allegany grew out of the health care ministries of the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, New York. In addition to awarding grants, Allegany Franciscan Ministries’ staff and volunteers work collaboratively with community partners and other funders to create healthier, safer, and more connected places where the most vulnerable residents can prosper. For more information, call 727-507-9668 or visit www.afmfl.org.

Foundation for a Healthy St. Petersburg
The Foundation for a Health St. Petersburg is a private foundation working with the communities of Pinellas County to eradicate inequality, achieve racial equity to advance health equity, and improve population health. The Foundation inspires and empowers people, organizations, ideas, and relationships to ensure that every person equitably achieves optimal health and well-being. For more information, call 727-865-4650 or visit www.healthystpete.foundation.

United Way Suncoast
United Way Suncoast staff, volunteers and trusted community partners fight for the education and financial stability of every person in our community because everyone deserves the opportunity to reach their full potential. Across DeSoto, Hillsborough, Pinellas and Sarasota counties United Way Suncoast works to break the cycle of generational poverty through educational programs that give children the skills to succeed and help adults achieve long-term financial stability, as well as provide support services to those who need it most. For more information, call 813-274-0900 or visit www.unitedwaysuncoast.org.