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Community Foundation of the Ozarks activates COVID-19 charitable fund

Sunday morning, the Florida Department of Health announced 39 new positive cases of COVID-19 in...
Sunday morning, the Florida Department of Health announced 39 new positive cases of COVID-19 in Florida. (MGN)(WJHG)
Published: Mar. 16, 2020 at 5:05 PM CDT
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The Community Foundation of the Ozarks is opening the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund to accept charitable donations to support nonprofits affected by disruptions due to the coronavirus outbreak.

As “second responders” in any disaster circumstances, nonprofits are called upon to support their communities, often the most vulnerable members, through increased need for services in areas such as food insecurity, childcare, transportation, mental and physical wellbeing and more.

With extensive experience in disaster recovery, the CFO is well positioned to recognize gaps for services and support needs identified by the nonprofit sector through accelerated grantmaking. The CFO will seed the fund with $10,000.

Donations can be made online at: cfozarks.org/donate. Checks noted for the fund can be sent to: Community Foundation of the Ozarks, P.O. Box 8960, Springfield, MO, 65801; please include “COVID-19 Fund” in the memo line. All gifts are tax deductible to the extent allowed by the IRS.

As the scope of needs is identified, the CFO will develop a grantmaking process to distribute funds to 501(c)3 nonprofit agencies, schools, faith-based organizations and government entities. Per IRS regulations, the CFO works through recognized nonprofits and does not make grants directly to individuals. Updates about the fund and grant opportunities will be posted at: cfozarks.org/covid19.

“The CFO has been active in disaster philanthropy for 17 years now, since the Stockton tornado in 2003 caused extensive physical and economic damage from which that community recovered very well,” CFO President Brian Fogle said. “Unfortunately, we are all too familiar with seeing the effects of the immediate disaster evolve into longer-term needs that the nonprofit sector supports in invaluable ways. If previous experience holds true, the same nonprofits asked to step up may be further challenged with fundraising event cancellations, staffing issues and other factors related to this national emergency.”

The Community Foundation of the Ozarks is a regional public charitable foundation established in 1973 that provides asset and resource development, grantmaking and public leadership through a network of donors, 49 affiliate foundations and some 600 nonprofit partners across central and southern Missouri.