As I complete my first full week as GiveWell Community Foundation’s (GWCF) President/CEO, I want to provide an update to the entire GWCF community. GWCF is a great organization with a wonderful Team doing good for the community and I am extremely honored to serve as its next President/CEO.
These are clearly difficult times. I hope everyone is doing as well as possible as we go through this crisis. Everyday life has been impacted through stay at home orders and social distancing mandates which create a new kind of stress on all of us. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all who may be impacted. If there is anything GWCF or I can do, please do not hesitate to contact me by email, text or phone.
The Covid-19 crisis is certainly having a dramatic impact on families, nonprofit organizations and businesses throughout our community and the nation. We face difficult challenges in the days and weeks ahead, but I sincerely believe we will get through this and be stronger than ever before. On a positive note, sometimes crisis brings opportunity and a reason to be thankful. I am heartened to see people carrying out acts of kindness in the midst of the pandemic. I am also extremely thankful for our healthcare workers and first responders who are working so hard to take care of those impacted by the virus. As a former Publix associate, I am very thankful for our grocery workers who have kept the supply chain working so that our food supply is not interrupted. Stories of innovation around the country are also inspiring, particularly companies that have repurposed their manufacturing operations to make needed supplies such as hand sanitizer and personal protective equipment. I have even heard of several local companies changing operations to make needed supplies for local hospitals. This innovative spirit is truly amazing.
Another positive is what Community Foundations are doing across the nation. Nearly 300 community foundations in all 50 states have collectively mobilized more than $411.3 million to provide critical support to those affected by Covid-19, according to new data from the Community Foundation Public Awareness Initiative. Here at GWCF, the crisis has given us the opportunity to partner with the United Way of Central Florida to create the United Community Relief Fund. The purpose of the fund is to aid nonprofits meet the basic needs of our communities such as food and shelter. Together with the United Way, we conducted a needs assessment last week that went out to local nonprofits. The purpose of the assessment was to determine the highest priority needs in the community. We followed that up with an invitation to our nonprofit partners to request funding to meet the highest priority needs. Currently, GWCF and the United Way are actively raising dollars for the United Community Relief Fund. Take a look at our website, www.givecf.org, for more details. To those of you who have given to the Fund, thank you very much!
As far as GWCF operations, most of the Team is now working from home and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. This is working well and has not impacted our ability to carry out GWCF’s mission. This crisis is not a reason to stop our work. It’s a time to act. By taking action, we hope to improve and create results for GWCF and our community.
Again, I am truly honored to be part of the GWCF Team. Thank you all for being part of the GWCF family! Stay well!!