Leesburg-based philanthropy group 100WomenStrong plans to distribute $119,500 to local nonprofits and emergency responders — effectively changing its 2020 competitive grant cycle strategy — in response to coronavirus.
"The global COVID-19 pandemic not only has threatened lives, but also has forced businesses to close and threatened the livelihoods of millions," 100WomenStrong Founder and President Karen Schaufeld said in a prepared statement. "The people losing jobs and shuttering businesses are our next-door neighbors and friends, and the financial and emotional toll is very high."
According to an announcement this week, 100WomenStrong will monitor COVID-19 relief efforts and invite some current or past grant recipients to apply for need-based funding on a monthly basis.
Nine area nonprofits were chosen to receive the first round of funding. Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington (Leesburg office) will receive $15,000, while Dulles South Food Pantry, HealthWorks for Northern Virginia and Loudoun Hunger Relief will each receive $10,000.
$7,500 and $7,000 grants will be given to Loudoun Volunteer Caregivers and Good Shepherd Alliance, respectively. Finally, Loudoun Free Clinic and Loudoun Homeless Services Center (Volunteers of America of the Chesapeake & Carolinas) will each receive $5,000.
Further, 100WomenStrong has allocated $50,000 for the purchase of personal protective equipment for local volunteer firefighters and EMTs.
"In our next round, we will continue to look at all of our past grantees and plan to expand our funding a bit to those that provide a safety net to help those most vulnerable in our community," organization member Kim Wagner said in a prepared statement.
Per the announcement, 100WomenStrong will only consider nonprofits that have received approval in past and current grant rounds. A second round of funding is planned for early May, and funds will continue on a monthly basis to the select organizations invited to apply.
More information about 100WomenStrong and its COVID-19 response initiative is available at onehundredwomenstrong.org.