T-Ride Foundation: SM County, Support for Covid-19 Fund +

T-Ride Foundation: SM County, Support for Covid-19 Fund +

The Telluride Foundation’s Covid-19 Response Fund provides cash assistance for critical human needs to families impacted by the pandemic. San Miguel County expanding its support.

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.

For more information about community resources, go here.

For more info on COVIDCheck Colorado, go here.

Katie Singer’s Covid-19 Response Fund update follows.

In December, the Telluride Foundation became increasingly concerned. Inquiries and applications for Good Neighbor emergency hardship assistance spiked, while the COVID-19 Response Fund, which the Telluride Foundation created at the start of the pandemic to aid individual and families struggling with the loss of employment or business revenue, was rapidly decreasing as Good Neighbor cash assistance was deployed. 

However, just as the Fund was getting close to being depleted, a couple of wonderful events happened.

First, the Johnson Family Foundation offered a $50,000 challenge match, which quickly raised $100,000 for the fund.  Then, the Foundation received word from San Miguel County that the County Commissioners would give $45,000 to assist San Miguel County residents.

The Telluride Foundation’s COVID-19 Response Fund was created in March 2020 and raised over $1,300,000 from private donors to date. The Fund supports the Foundation’s Good Neighbor financial assistance program, in partnership with Tri-County Health Network and has distributed over $1,100,000 in assistance to support over 650 individuals and families, across San Miguel, Ouray, western Montrose counties, and Rico, for their most critical needs:  rent, utilities, medical bills, and food.

Rent payments are the primary Good Neighbor assistance request, with 78% of funds paid for that essential need. In addition to providing money for Good Neighbor assistance, the Response Fund distributed $320,000 in emergency COVID health and human service grants to healthcare, food banks, volunteer organizing, and internet access organizations.

The need for Good Neighbor assistance continues and the COVID-19 Response Fund is the only place community members can apply for direct critical human needs such as cash assistance. While various critical government programs provide food support, SNAP for example, many people don’t qualify.

According to Paul Major, President & CEO of the Telluride Foundation. “We anticipate we will need to raise another $400,000 to meet the need in the community from now until the spring.”

As such, the Foundation is asking those who will soon be receiving a taxpayer stimulus checks and who have not experienced financial strife due to COVID-19 to consider donating that check, or a portion thereof, to help neighbors who are struggling during the pandemic.

The Foundation launched its first “Stimulate the Response” campaign in April 2020 as the first wave of stimulus checks began arriving, asking community members to consider contributing stimulus checks to the COVID-19 Response Fund. At that time, the Foundation was humbled by the donations from community members who gave what they could, some gifts as small as $10.

The Good Neighbor Fund has been around for over 15 years, quietly and in the background, helping hundreds of families over that time. The Foundation expanded the  Fund over the years to ensure families and individuals in San Miguel, Ouray, and West Montrose counties, as well as Rico, are supported, especially during these uncertain times. San Miguel County is also providing funding for mental health services through the Good Neighbor Fund. In addition, generous donors in Ouray County have created the Ouray County Response Fund, which provides Good Neighbor Fund grants specifically to Ouray County residents.

The Telluride Foundation, more:

The Telluride Foundation exists to create a stronger Telluride and regional community through the promotion and support of philanthropy. This year, 2021, marks 20 years of making more possible through the Telluride Foundation’s commitment to enrich the quality of life of the residents, visitors, and workforce of the Telluride region.

Currently, the Foundation is meeting this mission through our response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We have created the regional Coronavirus Response Fund, which supports community-based organizations and vulnerable individuals and families in the Telluride region, including San Miguel, Ouray, western Montrose counties, and Rico.

The Fund is targeted to assist in three urgent areas: 1) the  Good Neighbor Fund, family/individual emergency assistance for food, rent, medical (including behavioral health treatments); 2) emergency grants to  health and human service nonprofits, including regional medical clinics, food banks, and schools to provide meals for students; 3) expanded internet access and infrastructure necessary for students and teachers to participate in remote learning.

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