MISSOULA — The United Way of Missoula County will reopen the application process for its COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund on May 1.
The nonprofit expects to distribute a third round of one-time grants of up to $400 each to service and gig-economy workers affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The application form can be found here.
"The generosity of individual, foundation and corporate donors in western Montana and elsewhere in the country has enabled us to distribute $278,000 through our fund over the last six weeks, mostly to individuals who have been laid off or who have lost their jobs due to COVID-19,” said United Way of Missoula County CEO Susan Hay Patrick. “We now expect to distribute an additional $100,000 to more low-income displaced workers; the folks who play such an important role in keeping our community running.”
Patrick said fund eligibility has been expanded to include service and gig-economy workers in Mineral and Ravalli counties, as well as in Missoula County. Individuals who received grants from United Way’s fund previously are not eligible to reapply.
United Way has also awarded $35,000 in grants to several local nonprofits experiencing increased demands during the pandemic and created a $10,000 fund to reimburse child-care facilities for the costs they are incurring for items like bleach, cleaning supplies, gloves, masks and other items that enable them to stay open or reopen.
Grants of $5,000 were awarded to each of the following:
- Child Care Resources – to supplement its “Hands Up” Fund to assist families with child-care expenses
- Human Resource Council – to cover extra expenses incurred as a result of administering United Way’s COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund
- Missoula Aging Services – to defray the cost of increased demand for Meals on Wheels related to COVID-19
- Poverello Center – for general support of efforts to respond to COVID-19
- Soft Landing Missoula – to pay for culturally appropriate food and other supplies for refugee families, and to purchase appropriate technology to facilitate online learning for refugee families during the pandemic
- YWCA of Missoula – for motel vouchers for families experiencing homelessness
- Zootown Arts Community Center – to create a fund to provide assistance to artists, performing artists, and musicians affected by the pandemic
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