Charlotte COVID-19 Response Fund prepares to make grants, offer help

Helping central Carolinas through pandemic

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - It’s been just one week since the Foundation for the Carolinas and United Way of Central Carolinas launched the COVID-19 Response Fund and it has already raised more than $10 million.

Unlike other fundraising campaigns there’s no dollar amount they’re trying to reach. The goal is to just keep raising money.

“This is something that is so different and none of us really know what we’re going to be facing,” Foundation for the Carolinas Response Fund CEO Michael Marsicano said.

WBTV wanted to know how that money was going to help the community and what people can do to access it.

United Way of Central Carolinas President and CEO Laura Yates Clark said that people should call 211.

211 is a confidential hotline anyone can call to be connected with resources and non-profit agencies that can help.

“If you have any needs related to housing, food, childcare, whatever it is call 211,” Yates Clark said.

Those non-profits have limited resources that are being stretched during the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s where the relief fund comes in. Marsicano said that on Friday the fund will announce its first set of direct grants to non-profits.

“These are agencies that are well studied over the years that know how to get the money and services out to the people who need it," Marsicano said.

After that the competitive process opens up to other non-profits who apply.

“We have to get funding out to our partners as quickly as we can while we’re balancing being able to be held accountable for those funds,” Yates Clark said.

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