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$287,000 in Grants Awarded from the Delaware COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund

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In its third round of grants, the Delaware COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund today awarded $287,000 to 12 nonprofit organizations providing services to communities throughout the state.

The grants will address a broad range of community needs during the pandemic. Grantees are:

  • Catholic Charities – Diocese of Wilmington – $25,000 to provide case management for families affected by COVID-19 statewide.
  • Community Legal Aid Society, Inc. – $10,000 for secure technology to continue serving clients statewide while working remotely.
  • Delaware First Media/Delaware Public Media – $12,500 to address increased demand for statewide news coverage of the pandemic.
  • Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County – $50,000 to complete two homes currently under construction and provide additional case management.
  • House of Pride – $9,000 to operate low-income housing in Dover.
  • Love INC of Mid-Delmarva – $50,000 to provide shelter for the homeless in Western Sussex County.
  • Modern Maturity Center – $50,000 to deliver meals and grocery shop for seniors in Kent County who can no longer participate in congregate meals because of COVID-19.
  • Rosa Health Center, Inc. – $3,000 for technology and personal protective equipment to provide medical care for people in Sussex County.
  • Stop the Violence Prayer Chain – $2,500 to help volunteers provide children in Wilmington with food and supplies.
  • Sussex Community Housing Services, Inc. – $15,000 to provide shelter for the homeless in Sussex County.
  • Warriors Helping Warriors – $10,000 to provide case management to veterans in greater Middletown.
  • West End Neighborhood House, Inc. – $50,000 to provide food and housing assistance to families in Wilmington.

In this third round, 40 applicants requested a total of $1.1 million from the COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund, which is housed at the Delaware Community Foundation (DCF).

To date, the fund has awarded $987,000 to 36 Delaware nonprofits. Additional grants will be awarded next week.

The goal is for the fund, which launched March 18, to provide grants for several more weeks, said DCF President and CEO Stuart Comstock-Gay, who chairs the fund’s decision-making council.

The council is actively raising money to be able to respond to community needs, Comstock-Gay said.

“As the pandemic continues, the needs are growing and evolving,” Comstock-Gay said. “We are calling on the community to help local nonprofit organizations get food, shelter, medical care and other essential services directly to the people who need it most. We also must support our workforce, arts community and other sectors to restore our quality of life post-COVID-19.”

Double the Impact of Your Gift

The Longwood Foundation, which previously gave $1 million to the Strategic Response Fund, last week awarded a $500,000 grant, with the stipulation that the DCF must raise a matching $500,000 from the community.

To make a gift that qualifies for the match, give at or contact Joan Hoge-North, [email protected].

About the Fund

Grants from the Strategic Response Fund will initially focus on urgent needs related to COVID-19, then expand over time to more structural and long-term needs. Target applicants are nonprofit organizations with deep roots in the community and a strong track record of serving people who are immediately and disproportionately suffering from the crisis.

Grantees are selected through a rigorous process that involves a diverse team of more than 50 community leaders representing all three counties and a range of areas of expertise. Final decisions are made by the COVID-19 Grants Council:

Stuart Comstock-Gay, president and CEO, DCF
Sheila Bravo, president, Delaware Alliance for Nonprofit Advancement (DANA), ex officio
Vernita Dorsey, WSFS
There du Pont, president, Longwood Foundation
Alan Levin, SoDel Concepts
Leslie Newman, retired CEO, Children & Families First
Enid Wallace-Simms, Delmarva Power
Amy Walls, Discover Bank

Applications are being accepted weekly on a rolling basis and grants will be awarded weekly for as long as funding is available and community needs exist related to COVID-19. Each week, applications received by noon on Monday will be reviewed, grantees will be selected Friday morning, and funds will be transferred Friday afternoon.

The application is open at The deadline for the next round of awards is Monday, April 20, at noon.

The fund, which is being directed by Philanthropy Delaware President Cynthia Pritchard, already includes generous gifts from the Longwood Foundation ($1.5 million), Welfare Foundation ($200,000), Fund for Women ($100,000), Laffey McHugh ($100,000), Discover ($75,000), DCF ($75,000), WSFS Bank ($25,000) and others. The DCF also has waived all administrative fees for this fund, so that 100 percent of the funds are going to organizations helping people in need. 

The Delaware COVID-19 Strategic Response Fund is part of the Delaware COVID-19 Emergency Response Initiative, a nonprofit collaborative response to the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. The DCF, DANA, PD and United Way of Delaware are partnering to coordinate charitable resources to maximize impact statewide during this crisis. To contribute, visit