Tuesday, August 16, 2022

$118k disbursed to help local people struggling amid pandemic

The United Way of Denton County announced Thursday the disbursement of $118,425 from its COVID-19 Relief Fund to support neighbors in Denton County struggling financially in the wake of the local COVID-19 pandemic response.

UWDC leveraged its network of nonprofit partners to convene several agencies to accept referrals on behalf of residents including Christian Community Action, Denton County Friends of the Family, Giving Hope, Grace Like Rain, Interfaith Ministries, Next Steps (The Colony), Our Daily Bread and Salvation Army (Denton & Lewisville), according to a UWDC news release.

“Contributions from the Denton County United Way COVID-19 Relief Fund are making a huge impact amongst many individuals in crisis with no one to turn to for help,” said Daphne’ Adams, Director of Family Services at CCA. “Access to the COVID-19 Relief Fund has helped families avoid eviction and prevent hunger insecurity.”

As a result of the impacts of COVID-19 and the stay-at-home orders across the county, many individuals are facing hardships. The COVID-19 Relief Fund enables individuals to easily access assistance with rent, mortgage and utility expenses for Denton County residents who have experienced income loss due to the economic impact of COVID-19.

A client receiving assistance through Our Daily Bread said, “The process was really easy from start to finish. The agency staff was able to immediately alleviate my financial fears so that I could focus on my family and other important tasks.”

Nonprofits throughout Denton County are seeing a dramatic increase in residents accessing services. CCA has tripled the numbers of families served from the same time last year, according to UWDC. At the current rate of client requests, they anticipate the need for financial assistance to increase by nearly 500%.

“Many of the families requesting assistance are doing so for the very first time which is very overwhelming and hard for each of them,” said Michelle Conner, CEO of Grace Like Rain. “We know that the long-term effects could be devastating to so many and the need for long-term assistance and support will be greater than it ever has been.  These funds are helping GLR help families stay ahead of the crisis.”

To date, 138 households throughout Denton County have received financial assistance from the COVID-19 Relief Fund, with more requests in the queue.

“This pandemic is unlike any other crisis our community has faced,” said Gary Henderson, President & CEO of United Way of Denton County. “Nonprofits are truly on the front lines of this crisis providing a lifeline to a record number of neighbors who are being financially devastated. We’re grateful to the generosity of individuals, municipalities, and corporations who’ve stepped up with donations to help.”

“We are so thankful to be part of such a compassionate, giving community,” added Wendy McGee, Executive Director at Our Daily Bread in Denton.

The current balance of the Covid-19 Relief Fund is $188,618. Donations can be made at www.unitedwaydenton.org/COVIDFund.

In addition to the COVID-19 Relief Fund, United Way of Denton County continues to compile a fluid list of available resources for the community during this crisis (i.e. unemployment, meals for students, community food pantries, SBA Loan information, childcare, volunteer opportunities, nonprofit needs lists and more), as well as critical needs of nonprofits in Denton County.

More information on how to apply for assistance from the COVID-19 Relief Fund is available at www.unitedwaydenton.org/COVIDRelief.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith is the Digital Editor of The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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