Telluride Foundation: Covid-19 Response Fund Update, 6/7!

The coronavirus is a shared (and daunting) greater Telluride community experience. The effects on the economy and health are unprecedented. Frequently Asked Questions about the Telluride Foundation’s Covid-19 Response Fund. Click HERE to make a donation or contact Katie Singer at (970) 729-1807 or katie@telluridefoundation.org.

The Telluride Foundation is committed to providing a weekly update on the resources and response to this unique community challenge. Katie’s latest update (6/7) follows.

The Telluride Foundation acknowledges the turbulent times our country is going through and the suffering many communities are experiencing as the result of the death of George Floyd. In some ways, the racial inequity, rioting, and rage seems like a million miles away from our peaceful idealistic valley. And because these issues aren’t in our face everyday, they now make us pause now and catch our breath, seeking meaningful conversation and contemplation about how we, ourselves, are promoting social justice and equality and reducing the potential for rage, which sparks from inequities.

While Telluride presents as a predominantly white and privileged community, we, too, have our own issues of injustice. We have a large, underrepresented Latinx community and many individuals and neighboring communities face tremendous economic struggles. COVID has made us very aware of the compounding inequalities associated with this pandemic. Those who lack health insurance experienced this pandemic in unequal proportions, people who work in grocery stores and other essential jobs, or  others who lost their jobs as Main Street businesses closed down.

The Foundation is proud of the way the extended Telluride community has not only handled the COVID crises, but also for years worked to lessen the disparities and increase civic engagement among us. Staff salutes the Telluride and Norwood communities who peacefully gathered this week to express solidarity for racial equality, and applaud the community nonprofits and organizations that work daily to reduce inequities in our health, education, social welfare, and basic democratic processes.

Telluride is not immune to the inequalities that sparked the crises in Minnesota. We must listen, learn, and continue to challenge ourselves to visualize what true equality across economic and political systems can look like and move forward, making that vision a reality.

COVID Response Update

The Foundation has seen a decline in requests over the past two weeks for direct family and emergency grant assistance. That is likely attributed to the many benefits kicking in and re-hiring. Help include CARES Act benefits such as the PPP loans to businesses and nonprofits, CARES Act stimulus checks, and extended unemployment supplements from the state. Staff thinks we will continue to see a reduction in support requests for a month or two until CARES Act benefits end. The need for emergency grant assistance could remain an unknown into the summer and fall when there will be a better understanding of the true impact of the pandemic on local business and jobs. We all met the initial surge and are well positioned to appropriately react and continue meeting future demand. The needs of the community have been met due to the incredible generosity of many donors, particularly part-time residents, who have made significant and repeated donations to the Response Fund.

A simple than-you is not enough.

Response Fundraising

The Foundation has raised over $965,190 to date for the Fund, from $20 to $100,000 over the past two months. The support for the most vulnerable in our community has been just incredible.

To learn more about the Response Fund click here.

Good Neighbor Assistance and Emergency Grants

Since mid-March, we have funded, or are in the process of funding, 229 Good Neighbor clients for a total of $406,927.

The Good Neighbor regional emergency hardship assistance program is for families and individuals going through a financial crisis. Good Neighbor provides cash assistance for rent, food, medicine, transportation, and other critical human needs. The Foundation ha operated Good Neighbor for 15 years. Since mid-March, when coronavirus impacts started closing businesses and schools, capacity increased to include the Tri-County Health Network staff doing in-take and facilitating applications. These front-line bilingual/bicultural people are amazing. Not only do they provide Good Neighbor grants, but they also help clients access other public services, as well as provide extensive household financial management support.

In addition, the Response Fund has 3 pending emergency grants totaling $29,000 and has funded 9 emergency nonprofit grants totaling $210,000. These grants were for the three regional health clinics, internet access for distance learning, school districts to provide children’s meals, and the regional food banks.

To learn more about support for families and individuals please click here.

Another Community Shout Out:

While concerns and fears surrounding COVID-19 grew and many people stopped working or shifted to new home offices, the staff at Clark’s Market in Telluride carried on. They demonstrated positive attitudes and compassion as they stocked shelves, rang up customers, and met the demands of a community facing a pandemic.

Clark’s Assistant Manager Kelly Lundberg said, “We were happy to remain open through the COVID-19 crisis to serve the community. The best and most important part is that we have not had a single employee get sick.”

Clark’s Market in Telluride has also increased its team, hiring 10 new employees to handle the high demand.

In addition, Clark’s has donated over $6,089.74 to the Telluride Food Bank through its Nonprofit Monday Giving Program. On Mondays, shoppers are invited to drop off their grocery receipt, and a percent of their purchase is donated to the food bank for those in need. This generosity will continue for the entire month of June. Thank you Clark’s staff.

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  1. […] Last month, the designated philanthropy was the Telluride Foundation’s Covid-19 Relief Fund. (See related story here.) In June, monies will be donated to […]