Coronavirus Response: Working in a United Way

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March 20, 2020 - United Way of Greater New Haven (UWGNH) is responding to the coronavirus pandemic guided by its core belief: By working in a “united way,” we can make more of a difference than if we go at it alone.


As the virus outbreak impacts daily life for everyone in the region, UWGNH is providing leadership, expertise, coordination, advocacy, and resources to solve the region’s most challenging problems. For 100 years, the organization has been caring for community members and in this moment, this commitment is stronger than ever. During this time of great uncertainty, United Way is focused on helping the most vulnerable members of greater New Haven by meeting immediate needs and developing long-term solutions.

UWGNH holds expertise and relationships in the areas of education, financial stability, and health. This allows the organization to provide a rapid, community-facing response to the Coronavirus outbreak as needs emerge.

Since the pandemic hit, the organization has coordinated emergency plans and services with local providers that work with the homeless population, including sharing information about housing needs with state and city officials, as well as providing additional funds to emergency shelters for cleaning supplies. United Way has also organized volunteers to deliver food from local pantries to clients who cannot leave home and provided funds to soup kitchens for take-out containers. United Way is advocating with state and federal officials to provide families with access to formula, food, and other supplies while local early childhood programs are closed.


As the list of community needs grows daily, United Way is gathering and posting information and resources on its website to share across the region. The organization has already seen generosity from many who are seeking to help others. To join in these efforts, view a list of urgent volunteer opportunities and community organization needs. UWGNH has also compiled a page of resources to help individuals and families navigate this difficult time. These lists are updated regularly.

“We know it will take all of us doing our part to get through this pandemic,” stated Jennifer Heath, UWGNH President and CEO. “These are challenging times, and United Way of Greater New Haven is here to help the community chart a path forward just like we have for the past 100 years. By working together, we will emerge from this crisis stronger, more connected and with brighter days ahead.”


To further support the needs of the community, United Way of Greater New Haven and the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven are partnering to establish a Greater New Haven COVID-19 Community Fund. The organizations will work together to promote the fund to donors and in decision-making as to grants from the fund.

“In times like these, we all need to work together,” remarked Will Ginsberg, President of The Community Foundation. “Having one fund rather than two separate efforts by our two organizations is the best solution both for the nonprofit community and for donors in greater New Haven.”

United Way of Greater New Haven will continue to serve as a community coordinator, convener and advisor to address the economic consequences of the pandemic.


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