Giving in Response to COVID-19
The Philanthropy Roundtable

The Philanthropy Roundtable respects the freedom of donors and foundations to make decisions about why, where, and how to give their private resources. In the coming weeks and months, philanthropy is uniquely positioned to address the COVID-19 crisis. With the power to be nimble, flexible, and proactive in their approach, private givers are already responding to meet the needs of their communities. This page will highlight those examples and also provide resources that grantors can use to help grantees navigate challenges. Please contact Tareea Smith at if you come across impactful stories or recommended resources for this list.

Although we have not joined our colleagues in other philanthropy-serving organizations in asking our members to commit to certain grantmaking practices and increased payout rates, we encourage our members to respond to the COVID-19 crisis generously and thoughtfully in ways that reflect their values and principles. The Philanthropy Roundtable stands ready to support you in your work, and we encourage you to contact us if we can assist you in meeting the needs of your communities. 



    COVID-19 Funds


    • Lilly Endowment ($15 Million) and the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation ($500,000) provided seed capital for the newly launched Central Indiana COVID-19 Community Economic Relief Fund. On March 24, the fund announced its first set of unrestricted grants, totaling $7.3 million, to support 46 community organizations helping individuals and families as they weather the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Learn more here.
    • The Frist Foundation has pledged $1 million to back Nashville's COVID-19 Response Fund.
    • One Louisville: COVID-19 Response Fund formed by Louisville Metro Government, the Community Foundation of Louisville, Metro United Way, the James Graham Brown Foundation, and other community partners to offer emergency assistance to affected Louisvillians. Learn more here.
    • In early April the Mercatus Center at George Mason University launched a prize fund for biomedical research innovations to fight COVID-19. Forty awards have recently been made totaling about $7 million to MIT, Harvard, Stanford, Rockefeller University, UCSF, UC Berkeley, Yale, Oxford, and other institutions. Learn more here and here.
    • Carnegie Corporation of New York has partnered with peer institutions to create the $75 million NYC COVID-19 Response & Impact Fund. Learn more here.
    • Chicago-area funders have joined together to create the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund. Learn more here.
    • Stand Together and the Family Independence Initiative have joined together to create the #GiveTogetherNow fund to provide direct support to families in need. Learn more here.
    • Bloomberg Philanthropies announces initiatives to combat COVID-19: Coronavirus Local Response Initiative, the Coronavirus Global Response Initiative, and the NYC COVID-19 Response & Impact Fund. Learn more here.
    • The Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation has joined over 20 other funders and Erie County to launch the Western New York COVID-19 Community Response Fund. Learn more here.
    • El Pomar Foundation in Colorado established a $1 million fund for emergency assistance for affected organizations and individuals. Learn more here.
    • The William Penn Foundation granted $3 million to create the PHL COVID-19 Fund. An additional $3 million in commitments has come from local individuals, businesses, the United Way, the Philadelphia Foundation, and the City of Philadelphia. Learn more here.
    • DonorsTrust launched the Growth and Resilience Fund in response to the coronavirus crisis. Learn more here.
    • The J. Paul Getty Trust granted $10 million to create a Covid-19 relief fund that will support nonprofit museums and visual-arts organizations in Los Angeles throughout the coronavirus crisis. Learn more here.
    • The Lilly Endowment granted $30 million to Indiana United Ways to distribute resources through its statewide network; $3.5 million to United Way of Central Indiana to meet basic needs of people living in the five counties it serves outside Marion County; and $15 million to the Salvation Army for its work both nationally and focused in Indiana. Learn more here and here.
    • The Duke Endowment granted $2.5 million to support people in the Carolinas affected by the coronavirus crisis. Half the gift has gone to the North Carolina Healthcare Foundation. The remaining $1.25 million was awarded to One SC, a fund created at Central Carolina Community Foundation in 2015 to respond to natural disasters. Learn more here
    • The Longwood Foundation granted $1 million to Delaware’s Covid-19 Strategic Response Fund. Learn more here
    • Kimberly-Clark has given $1 million to the United Way’s Covid-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund. The company is also donating 5 million of its Huggies brand of diapers to the National Diaper Bank Network. Learn more here
    • The Colorado Governor’s COVID Rapid Response Fund has raised nearly $11 million from foundations, corporations and over 6,000 citizen donors. Learn more here.
    • Local donors and community-based nonprofits partnered with the Family Independence Initiative and the Stand Together Foundation to create the Kent County Relief Fund to provide $500 emergency cash to affected individuals in Kent County, Michigan. Learn more here.
    • The Jewish Community Response and Impact Fund will provide interest-free loans and grants to Jewish nonprofit organizations facing economic hardship because of the pandemic. The fund was created with donations from the Aviv Foundation;, the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation; the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Foundation; the Jim Joseph Foundation; Maimonides Fund; the Paul E. Singer Foundation; and the Wilf Family Foundation. Learn more here.
    • The Pascale Sykes Foundation and New Jersey Community Capital are expanding the Thrive South Jersey Initiative, which is giving financial assistance and no-interest loans to meet the immediate needs of small businesses and nonprofit groups during the Covid-19 pandemic. Learn more here.
    • The H.E. Butt Foundation has partnered with the San Antonio Area Foundation and other local funders to launch the COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund to help hard-hit nonprofits. The H.E. Butt Foundation also partnered with the Family Independence Initiative to bring $2M in direct cash transfers to families in San Antonio.  Learn more here.
    • Publix Super Market Charities donated $25 million to United Way Worldwide's most recent workforce campaign. Learn more here.
    • Stand Together and the Family Independence Initiative's #GiveTogetherNow fund has raised $100 million to serve nearly 200,000 families. Learn more here.
    • The James Graham Brown Foundation is committing up to an additional $10 million in support of nonprofits affected by the pandemic, in addition to the $15 million already granted this year—most of which was given in response to COVID-19. Learn more here.
    • See also the Candid directory of funds here and the Giving Compass directory of funds here for more comprehensive lists.



    How funders are adapting their grantmaking practices


    • Lilly Endowment is posting updates about grantmaking and how the pandemic may affect initiatives. Learn more about how it's responding to Indiana's needs here.
    • The Robert Sterling Clark Foundation announced ways they are supporting grantees, including adding an additional year of funding to every grant. Learn more here.
    • The Ball Brothers Foundation is implementing a "Rapid Grant" process to get emergency funds to its community. Learn more here.
    • Michael M. Kaiser and Brett Egan of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management have created a list of suggestions to support the arts during the pandemic crisis. Learn more here.
    • The Chronicle of Philanthropy offers six steps for grant makers to prepare for nonprofit recovery after COVID-19. Learn more here.
    • Barron's: How Bridge Loans Can Aid Nonprofits and Social Enterprises Through the Covid-19 Crisis
    • Medium: 5 Learnings from Funders as They Respond to COVID-19
    • Foellinger Foundation of Allen County, Indiana is committing $1.35M in Critical Response Grants to support local nonprofits providing crucial services. Learn more here.
    • PEAK Grantmaking is tracking changes in the grants management response to COVID-19. Learn more here.
    • North Texas Cares, a collaborative of North Texas funders, is now accepting applications for emergency grants. Learn more here.
    • The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation has committed $4 million to its current grantees to provide emergency operational funding during the Covid-19 crisis. Of the commitment, $2.6 million has already been paid to 55 of its grantees. Learn more here.
    • The Morgridge Family Foundation has committed $1 million to COVID-19 emergency response grants. Three organizations were granted $100,000. Learn more here.
    • Funders are utilizing intermediaries to provide direct cash transfers to individuals hurt by the economic impact of COVID-19. Learn more here.
    • The M. J. Murdock Charitable Trust details its grantmaking adaptations and provides links to other resources in the Pacific Northwest (including Alaska) here
    • Newman’s Own Foundation has adapted its grantmaking processes by accelerating the launch of a $2 million grant program to get funding into local communities sooner, by providing flexibility regarding use of funds for all grantees who received funding in the last 12 months, and by having check-in video calls with many grantees. See also their published op-ed here.  
    • The Jewish United Fund has committed $26 million to create its Covid 19 Initiative to provide emergency financial assistance to people in need in Chicago; expand access to food and meals; enhance health care staffing and PPE at Mt. Sinai Hospital and residential programs for older people and those with disabilities; and give urgent operating support to local Jewish human-services groups and educational agencies. The Jewish United Fund pulled money from its endowment and annual campaign for this new grant-making program. Learn more here
    • The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation has expanded its earlier COVID-19 grantmaking to provide $5 million in additional aid to existing grantees. The foundation has dedicated an extra $1 million to each of the following five program areas: Catholic sisters; foster youth; safe water; hospitality workforce development; and young children affected by HIV/AIDS. Learn more here


    What funders and others are doing in healthcare


    • The Michael and Susan Dell Foundation has committed $20 million to the global COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator launched by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard to identify potential treatments for COVID-19 and accelerate their development. Learn more here.
    • The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation had previously announced the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, a coalition to quicken the development of antiviral drugs and prepare for their distribution throughout the world. Through a partnership with Wellcome and Mastercard, $125 million is going toward this effort. Learn more about the Accelerator here
    • The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative and CZ Biohub will quadruple the COVID-19 testing capability of UCSF. Learn more here.
    • Bayer donates three million malaria tablets to potentially fight coronavirus. Learn more here.
    • Teva plans to donate more than 10 million hydroxychloroquine sulfate tablets to hospitals within a month. Learn more here.
    • Nashville gin distillery switches to hand sanitizer production and will donate it to the community. Learn more here.
    • Prudential donates 153,000 masks and respirators stockpiled after 9/11 to the state of New Jersey. Learn more here.
    • State Policy Network: Five things state policymakers can do right now to address the coronavirus public health crisis. Learn more here.
    • Bloomberg Philanthropies and the state of Maryland have gifted $4 million to the Johns Hopkins University to conduct promising research into a possible treatment method that aims to fight the new coronavirus using the blood of patients who have recovered from it. Learn more here.
    • Samaritan’s Purse, a nondenominational evangelical Christian humanitarian organization is working with Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City to build an emergency field hospital in Central Park. The hospital is being built by volunteers from local churches. Learn more here.
    • The New England Patriots provided $2 million and the team’s plane to ship 1.2 million masks from China to the United States. Learn more here.
    • U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation lists the contributions of various businesses, many of which are gifts to healthcare efforts. Learn more here.
    • Battelle Memorial Institute, an Ohio-based science and technology nonprofit, has developed two machines to sterilize up to 80,000 N95 masks per day. Learn more here.
    • The Milken Institute is making available a COVID-19 Treatment and Vaccine Tracker containing an aggregation of publicly available information from validated sources here
    • The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky funded the production of public service announcements about COVID-19 for television, radio, and social media. Learn more here.
    • The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust is making $6.3 million in emergency grants to support nonprofits in Arizona’s Maricopa County during the outbreak of Covid-19, including $2 million to Arizona State University’s Biodesign Institute to expand its automated, rapid diagnostic testing that aims to mitigate the spread and potential recurrence of the virus. Learn more here
    • University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing is offering free telehealth training to all health care providers. Learn more here.
    • The Carolina Textile District, a social enterprise of the nonprofit Industrial Commons, is partnering with other businesses and nonprofits to retool in response to a request from local healthcare providers for medical supplies. Learn more here
    • "NYC Healthcare Heroes" nonprofit is launching to provide non-perishable foods, cleaning products, and over-the-counter medications to hospital staff. Learn more here.
    • Boys and Girls Clubs are supporting communities across the country by providing food, virtual programs, and emergency childcare for healthcare workers and first responders at various locations across the country. Learn more here.
    • Bloomberg Philanthropies is giving $10.5 million to a test-and-trace effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus, and will work with the New York State health department to recruit contact tracers, create an oversight panel for the program, and design a tracing model for other states. The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health will develop an online training program for contact tracers. The New York effort will also include Connecticut and New Jersey. Learn more here.
    • The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative is donating $13.6 million to a new research effort involving Stanford University, the University of California, San Francisco, and the research center known as the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub. Scientists will track the coronavirus pandemic by using both a standard Covid-19 test for active infections and an antibody test, which looks for evidence of a previous, but perhaps silent, infection. If they identify emerging hot spots as the economy reopens in the Bay Area they will notify public health officials. Learn more here.
    • Kaiser Permanente committed $63 million for contact-tracing efforts to the Public Health Institute's Tracing Program in partnership with the State of California. Learn more here.


    What funders and others are doing in education


    • The Duke Energy Foundation has announced $810,000 in grants to support North Carolina K-12 programs focused on summer reading loss and STEM and experiential learning. Learn more here.
    • The National School Choice Week team offers more than 100 free resources to families and schools as they shift to online learning, including tips for students with disabilities. Learn more here.
    • #LearnEverywhere offers curriculum for learners of all types of subjects ranging from history and math to computer science and social emotional learning. Learn more here.
    • Zearn Math offers webinars for administrators, teachers, and parents to prepare for distance learning. Learn more here
    • The Samueli Foundation, through its North America Scholastic Esports Federation, is providing students around the country the opportunity to engage on a free, monitored, safe online e-sports platform, coupled with STEM-based learning opportunities. Learn more here.
    • KIPP Foundation is collecting funds for its alumni affected by college closures and has made resources available for its campuses to navigate school closures. Learn more here.
    • The Charter School Growth Fund has approved $2.5 million in emergency grants to its 120 portfolio members. Learn more here.
    • NewSchools Venture Fund has compiled a Google spreadsheet filled with a variety of great resources ranging from math to reading and writing geared toward parents, families, and educators. Learn more here.
    • Khan Academy has set up a help desk for how its tools can be used during school closures here. You can view their suggested daily routines by grade level here.
    • The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy created an education toolkit for at-home learning filled with free resources that can continue to help children build literacy skills while at home. Learn more here.
    • Bellwether Education Partners is offering consulting services to school districts and charter schools pro bono. Learn more here.
    • Partnership Schools (Partnership for Inner-City Education) is waiving tuition during school closures, is continuing to pay staff for the remainder of school closures, and has started the Partnership Schools COVID-19 Family Relief Fund for any of the school's families facing an urgent need. Learn more here.
    • South Carolina Department of Education plans on using 3,000 buses with Wi-Fi access, prioritizing rural and high-poverty districts. Learn more here.
    • Children's Scholarship Fund has launched the Stay in School Fund to support scholarship families in need. Learn more here.
    • Harbor Freight Tools for Schools offers a list of resources for trade teachers. Learn more here.
    • New York City Charter School Center received an anonymous donation to fund COVID-19 Crisis Grants to ensure high quality remote learning for its students. Learn more here.
    • Travis Manion Foundation will host daily Facebook Live sessions on character education. Learn more here.
    • The Andrew and Julie Klingenstein Family Fund is among those supporting the new DC Education Equity Fund. The fund will increase internet access and purchase digital devices to support students, educators, and schools with distance learning. Learn more here.
    • Comcast CEO Brian Roberts and family to donate $5 million for laptops so Philadelphia students can learn remotely. Learn more here.
    • SchoolSmartKC announces a $2 million COVID-19 Education Relief Fund for educational and community support programs in the Kansas City Public School District. Learn more here.
    • The GHR Foundation in the Twin Cities has deployed a two-pronged grant strategy: one grant issued to the Minnesota Independent School Forum to support distance learning technology, teacher training, childcare, and facility cleanliness; the other to the Sheridan Story to deliver backpacks of food to food insecure families. Learn more here.
    • Uncommon Schools is offering free remote learning resources for K-8 students. Learn more here.
    • Education and tech giants set their rivalries aside to create Wide Open Schools to provide free, reliable resources for remote learning. Learn more here.
    • Future of School developed a Remote Learning Relief Fund to give grants to teachers as they provide online instruction. Learn more here.
    • Intelligent Education is providing free tools for teachers to create streaming video courseware, and pre-made courses for high school students. Learn more here.
    • Indianapolis E-Learning Fund, seeded with $2.6 million, will support educators, students, and families during the remote-learning transition. Learn more here.
    • The Philanthropy Roundtable: Four immediate ways donors can support students, families, and teachers. Learn more here.
    • DTE Energy, Skillman Foundation, and Quicken Loans seed $23 million to Connected Futures, a program in partnership with the Detroit Public Schools Community District and the City of Detroit to distribute internet-connected tablets and technical support to 51,000 students in Detroit and help them continue their education digitally at home. The program has also received grants from the Kellogg Foundation and General Motors. Learn more here.
    • The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded a $4 million grant to the American Indian College Fund to support college students whose education has been interrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Learn more here
    • Led by Mary and Ted Kellner, the City Forward Collective has launched the COVID-19 School Support Fund to support quality distance learning for Milwaukee students. Learn more here.
    • The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative gave $1.2 million to DonorsChoose to provide financial support to teachers designing distance-learning lesson plans during the pandemic. Learn more here.
    • The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation announced $1.8 million in emergency grants to 16 historically black colleges and universities to help them prepare their students for the upcoming academic year. The grants address technology needs, financial strain on students from tuition or residential bills, travel between home and campus, and other necessities. Learn more here.
    • The Studio @ Blue Meridian, the Valhalla Charitable Foundation, and the Overdeck Family Foundation have granted $9 million to, a national education nonprofit group, to expand its kindergarten-readiness offerings and create the Waterford Upstart Summer Learning Path, a summer program for children who have been out of school since March. Learn more here
    • As more parents and schools consider homeschooling or online schooling for their students this fall, National School Choice Week offers a comprehensive guide on choosing the best resources. For homeschooling resources, click here. For online schooling resources, click here.
    • Salesforce pledged $20 million to to San Francisco, Oakland, Indianapolis, Chicago and New York City school districts to support distance learning. Learn more here.
    • The City of Philadelphia launched PHLConnectED in partnership with the Philadelphia School Partnership and the Jump-Start Philly Schools Fund to provide internet access to up to 35,000 low-income K-12 students. Learn more here.
    • The National Parents Union announced the first round of winners of its Homeschool Pod/Microschool Accelerator Grant Program. Learn more here.
    • VELA Education Fund launched its "Meet the Moment" grant program to give $1 million to four organizations that support parents and educators as they work through this period of education disruption. Learn more here.


    What funders and others are doing in civic education


    • National Constitution Center is hosting daily live webinars on constitutional principles. Learn more here.
    • Center for Civic Education offers free, downloadable lesson plans. Learn more here.
    • Thomas B. Fordham Institute offers resources for remote learning. Learn more here.
    • Thomas B. Fordham Institute created a list of educational YouTube channels for middle school/high school students. Learn more here.
    • Heritage Foundation offers resources for remote learning. Learn more here.
    • Jack Miller Center offers resources for remote learning. Learn more here.
    • An Introduction to Constitutional Law: 100 Supreme Court Cases Everyone Should Know - Free access through May 31. Learn more here.
    • For a list of civic education resources compiled by the Roundtable's Adam Kissel, click here.



    What funders and others are doing for economic opportunity and workforce development


    • In addition to a $1 million lead gift, the Houston Endowment is also donating an additional dollar for every $4 contributed, up to a total match gift of $1 million to the Greater Houston COVID-19 Recovery Fund. Learn more here.
    • The Michael and Susan Dell Foundation has committed $80 million to help ensure that healthcare workers are protected; that the vital work of nonprofits, teachers, and students continues; and that people and families across the world can get back to their daily lives. Some of this funding will be used for loans and guarantees to augment relief efforts and medical capacity, and to reach small businesses and micro-entrepreneurs. Learn more here.
    • Communities Foundation of Texas launched the Get Shift Done initiative to keep hourly hospitality workers employed during the COVID-19 crisis. Learn more here.
    • The Southern Smoke Foundation of Houston and the Restaurant Workers Community Foundation are collaborating in distributing direct relief to restaurant workers, funding nonprofits serving restaurant workers in crisis, and providing zero-interest loans for restaurants to get back up and running. Their work is funded by corporations, foundations, and individuals. Learn more here.
    • The American Hotel and Lodging Foundation Hospitality for Hope Initiative is offering free hospitality management training, professional development certification scholarships, employment resources, and continuing education scholarships to hotel employees that have been affected by the coronavirus. Learn more here.
    • Communities are establishing centralized registries for the purchase of gift cards from restaurants and other retailers closed because of COVID-19. See an example from Texas here.
    • Feed the Front Line is raising funds to place large takeout orders with Houston and Dallas restaurants and deliver the meals to workers at area hospitals and clinics. Learn more here.
    • Hotels are maintaining operations and employees in responding to COVID-19 needs. Hilton and American Express will offer hotel rooms free of charge for up to 1 million workers represented by 10 medical associations across the country. Marriott launched a $10 million program in partnership with American Express and JP Morgan Chase to provide free rooms to healthcare professionals in parts of the country most affected by COVID-19. OYO Hotels & Homes is offering free stays at all of its properties to doctors, nurses and other medical first responders. Hotel housing for health care workers and non-COVID patients is also being provided by individual hotels in New York City, Philadelphia, New Orleans, and other communities.
    • The EdTech Center at World Education has created a new website called Tips for Distance Learning. Learn more here.
    • The DeVos Institute of Arts Management at the University of Maryland is offering pro bono consulting services to U.S.-based arts institutions. Learn more here.
    • The Schultz Family Foundation, with Seattle restaurant owners, have launched the $4 million Plate Fund to provide restaurant workers with $500 until they receive federal stimulus payments. Learn more here.
    • Junior Achievement is offering free resources to teachers and parents to support distance learning. Learn more here.
    • Lemonade Day is launching an app to help kids set up lemonade stands, and in the meantime is teaching children entrepreneurial principles through its learning site, Lemonopolis. Learn more here.
    • We Thrive, designed for online learning, is making its resources readily available to schools and community organizations. Learn more here.
    • Youth Entrepreneurs has just launched a new website to provide its entrepreneurship education to high school students. Learn more here.
    • The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation committed $2.8 million to support grantees as well as small businesses, entrepreneurs, and schools in the Kansas City region in response to the coronavirus crisis. Learn more here.
    • The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation offers a guide to helping small businesses during this crisis. Learn more here.



    What funders and others are doing for social services



    • Social media provides a platform for direct, peer-to-peer giving. Learn more here
    • Baylor Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty is leading an effort to bring boxed meals (1 million/week) to kids in rural communities by leveraging philanthropy. Learn more here.
    • Families Empowered serves families in Houston, Austin, and San Antonio, and provides a list of resources for families in those regions including school-related information, how to access meals and other social supports, and learning recommendations. Learn more here.
    • Gates Family Foundation donated $250,000 to the Mile High United Way’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Effort.
    • The DeVos Institute of Arts Management at the University of Maryland is offering pro bono consulting services to U.S.-based arts institutions. Learn more here.
    • The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has provided $1 million to Citymeals on Wheels and an additional $250,000 to God’s Love We Deliver to bring free, nutritious meals to homebound elderly and health-compromised people in New York. Learn more here.
    • The Boston Resiliency Fund is a municipally-coordinated funding effort designed to provide support to Boston’s first responders, learning technology for public school students, and food for populations in need. Learn more here.
    • Brooklyn landlord canceled April rent for hundreds of tenants. Learn more here .
    • Jose Andres and other celebrity chefs are uniting to feed the hungry and support restaurants affected by COVID-19. Learn more here.
    • Jack Dorsey announced Tuesday that he will use $1 billion of his shares in Square, the payment-processing platform he co-founded, to fund relief efforts for Covid-19 and then move on to other causes. The donation will go to Start Small, his limited liability company. Learn more here .
    • J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation have made emergency grants to assist with distance learning and food insecurities. Additionally, they are mobilizing Mission43, a veterans organization, to deliver meals to those in need. Lean more here.
    • The Wells Fargo Foundation committed $175 million to make donations toward food, shelter, small business, and housing stability, as well as to provide help to public-health organizations during the coronavirus pandemic. Learn more here
    • The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is providing $50 million to groups that provide food, housing, and cash to people hardest hit by the coronavirus epidemic. Learn more here
    • The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation committed $10.3 million to community funds in the eight cities where the foundation has offices, and to its community foundation partners in another 18 communities. Learn more here.
    • Comcast executives are donating their salaries to COVID-related charities and the company is using $500 million to support employees. Learn more here.
    • Blue Meridian Partners announced a $100 million COVID emergency response initiative to assist low-income families. Learn more here.
    • GiveDirectly is partnering with Propel to send funds directly to vulnerable households. Learn more here.
    • Cisco is committing $225 million in cash, in-kind, and planned giving to support the global response to COVID-19 and has also launched an employee matching gift campaign of up to $4 million. Learn more here.
    • The Jewish Food Society partnered with Feed the Frontlines to feed front line medical professionals while keeping Jewish and Israeli restaurants around New York open. The Paul E. Singer Foundation is covering the first 50,000 meals and JFS is raising additional funds. Learn more here.
    • Harold Alfond Foundation seeds $1 million to the Good Shepherd Food Bank for hunger-relief efforts in Maine. Learn more here.
    • SkillUp CT is providing free online job training for Connecticut residents seeking unemployment benefits. Learn more here.
    • The Kinder Foundation has donated $1 million to the Houston Food Bank to assist the nonprofit with its extensive COVID-19 efforts. The food bank provides meals to food-insecure people in 18 counties in southeast Texas, and has seen an increase in demand of 130 to 150%. The new funding will enable the organization to continue employing temporary hospitality workers who had been laid off from their regular jobs, and will also be used to cover costs of distribution trucks, an additional facility the food bank has rented, and the acquisition of fresh produce and dry goods. Learn more here.
    • The Denver Foundation has given $2.3 million to 94 nonprofits across Colorado that are helping state residents contend with the economic and health effects of Covid-19 . Donors with funds at the foundation have directed an additional $16.8 million for pandemic relief. Learn more here
    • The Pew Charitable Trusts committed $6.8 million over three years to 38 Philadelphia-area nonprofits providing critical services to the region’s most vulnerable people, including those experiencing homelessness, mental-health issues, and extended unemployment. Learn more here
    • The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation gave $10 million to the Silicon Valley Community Foundation for its Covid-19 relief efforts across the San Francisco Bay Area. Learn more here
    • KaJ Labs has pledged $100 million for the technology company’s coronavirus giving in the United States and East Africa. Learn more here
    • has committed $100 million for Covid-19 relief efforts, including economic relief and recovery, health and science, and distance learning. Learn more here



    What funders and others are doing for veterans and military families


    • San Antonio’s USAA and the USAA Foundation announced they will give a total of $2.3 million to military-related and national nonprofits in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The aid will help provide meals and emergency financial assistance for military families and care packages for troops overseas. Funds will also support research on virus therapies and vaccines. Learn more here.
    • The Association of Defense Communities, Blue Star Families, and participants of the White Oak Collaborative have formed the COVID-19 Military Support Initiative to support affected military families. Learn more here.
    • Team Rubicon is responding to the COVID-19 situation through their Unrestricted Ready Reserve fund, a pot of unrestricted dollars from funders to allow them the flexibility to respond when and where it is needed. Funders include the Schultz Family Foundation, The Marcus Foundation, and The Ahmanson Foundation. Learn more here.
    • In New York City, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital set up a field hospital staffed by veterans, naming it for deceased Navy SEAL Ryan Larkin. Learn more here.
    • Hire Heroes USA announced a new partnership with the CDC Foundation to help connect skilled veterans with high-demand areas in the fight against COVID-19. Learn more here.
    • Travis Manion Foundation participated in the recent #GivingTuesdayNow campaign, aimed at raising $10,000 to support veterans and families of the fallen as they support their communities during COVID-19. Learn more here.



    What funders and others are doing for faith communities


    • As part of the “Churches Helping Churches Challenge,” the National Christian Foundation will administer $3,000 grants to churches serving low-income communities affected by COVID-19. Learn more here.



    What funders and others are doing to maintain communications and internet access


    • CTIA is keeping communities connected in partnership with leading wireless network providers. Learn more here.
    • The Federal Communications Commission has temporarily granted U.S. cellular additional spectrum to improve internet capability during COVID-19. Wireless providers — T-Mobile, Sprint, AT&T, and Comcast — are all lifting their unlimited data caps for cell phone subscribers for at least 60 days. Learn more here.
    • Internet providers are providing free hot spots and broadband service to students and families in need. ComcastXfinityAT&T, and Spectrum announced all their hot spots are free.
    • Charter Communications in Connecticut is offering free broadband and Wi-Fi access to homes with K-12 or college students that do not already have service. Learn more here.



    General trends in philanthropy


    • Funders are communicating—with current and prospective grantees to understand their immediate needs, with each other to coordinate responses and eliminate gaps, and with trusted advisers who can help them plan short- and long-term grantmaking strategy.
    • They are collaborating with other funders—both private and public—to pool funding for the most critical needs and to create COVID-19 response funds for specific geographic areas or populations (health care workers, restaurant employees, veterans, etc.).
    • Funders are providing more general operating support, and some are removing restrictions from existing, project-focused grants.
    • They are awarding multi-year grants or adding an extra year to existing grants.
    • Funders are retaining individuals and organizations to provide fundraising counsel and technical assistance to their grantees and other nonprofit organizations. 
    • They are utilizing low- or no-interest PRIs to stretch their payout in 2020.
    • Funders are reducing paperwork by accepting requests by email from existing grantees, by fast-tracking new grantees, and by eliminating reporting requirements or extending due dates.
    • They are fast-tracking their grant recommendation and approval processes.
    • Funders are utilizing electronic transfers to get money in the hands of nonprofits as quickly as possible.
    • They are seeking the best opportunities for private funding in order to leverage that support with the public resources that will be made available to nonprofits. 
    • Funders are supporting initiatives to strengthen the resilience of the private-sector economy and to ensure that temporary stimulus legislation does not lead to a permanent massive expansion of government.
    • They are finding new partners to fill the gaps in COVID-19 responses, including the dissemination of PSAs through both radio and social media and the use of intermediaries to get cash into the hands of individuals and families in need.  
    • Funders are giving serious consideration to increasing payout in 2020 and even 2021 in order to have more impact in responding to current needs and assisting with recovery. (The passage of a flat excise tax in late 2019 means there will be no penalty for funders who increase payout in this crisis but then return to their normal payout rate.) 



    Additional resources:




    Upcoming Events

    The Coronavirus and Public Policy
    Presented by Hillsdale College
    Register to access each symposium session as they become available


    Practical Steps During a Time of Uncertainty
    Recording: Budgets less than $3M
    Recording: Budgets more than $3M
    Hosted by Michael M. Kaiser
    Each recording is available until May 29. Access each using password: Murdock



    Past Webinars

    To access past Roundtable webinars, visit this page. Titles include:

    • The COVID-19 Pivot: From Emergency Authorizations to Permanent Deregulation
    • The Gates Foundation’s Investments in COVID Testing, Therapeutics, and Vaccines
    • The Modern Classrooms Project and Effective Distance Learning Environments
    • Emergency Support for Small Businesses
    • Eva Moskowitz on Distance Learning at Success Academy
    • Balancing Donor Intent with Crisis Grantmaking
      See also: Honoring Donor Intent in Times of Crisis
    • Children's Mental Health
    • Computer Science During COVID-19
    • Emergency Cash Grants
    • COVID Legislation and Relief Options for Grantees