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Parkersburg Area Community Foundation Awards More Than $50,000 in COVID-19 Emergency Funding to Date

The Parkersburg Area Community Foundation & Regional Affiliates (PACF) is actively partnering with its local donors and other area funders to address the critical needs of local citizens who are impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic by providing funding to a wide variety of area nonprofit organizations that are delivering essential services for their clients and families.

To date, the PACF has awarded more than $50,000 in COVID-19 emergency funds to help local nonprofits continue their critical services and programs.  Food, rent and utilities assistance, and purchase of hygiene and school supplies are just a few of the things that these grants have supported and will continue to support as the PACF provides additional grants in the coming weeks.

“Many of the requests we are receiving are to support food access for area residents,” said Marian Clowes, PACF’s Associate Director for Community Leadership.  “Through the quick action of the Foundation and with the help of our donors, we’ve responded swiftly to support agencies working on the front lines through this pandemic.”

One local nonprofit organization that received support recently wrote to the PACF regarding its grant support saying, “Thank you for coordinating support for our families.  As the person working directly with the recipients, I want to say that it was a real lifeline for some families who were caught in the unemployment limbo.”

Grants thus far include:

  • Boys and Girls Club of Parkersburg:  $5,000 for direct food assistance, in partnership with Piggly Wiggly, to club member families impacted by COVID-19.
  •  Calhoun County Schools :  $3,000 to purchase hygiene and school supplies to distribute to families in need, awarded in partnership with the Sisters Health Foundation (SHF).
  •  Children's Home Society:  $4,620 to supply food boxes for youth in their Transitional Living Program who lack access to food due to COVID 19, awarded in partnership with SHF.
  •  Community Resources:  $5,000 to buy food and provide operating support for their Thrive food pantry to meet significantly increased demand.
  •  Friendship Kitchen:  $2,000 to purchase food to meet greatly increased demand for their meal program, awarded in partnership with the SHF.
  • Mountaineer Foodbank:  $6,000 to support food purchases and operations at the food bank that serves feeding programs in all PACF service counties.
  • Normantown Historical Community Center:  $1,000 to purchase food to stock their food pantry to meet increased demand in the Gilmer County community.
  • Old Man Rivers:  $5,000 to buy food to meet increased demand for home meal delivery and food pantry services, awarded in partnership with the SHF.
  •  Parkersburg Urban Ministries:  $5,000 to purchase food and hygiene products to supply this pantry to meet increased demand, awarded in partnership with the SHF.
  • SW Resources:  $7,500 to help clients who are facing financial hardships to meet their basic needs (including rent and utility assistance), awarded in partnership with SHF.
  • The Gathering Church:  $1,000 to secure food for home food box deliveries to individuals impacted by COVID-19.
  • Wood County Senior Citizens Association:  $5,000 to purchase food and related supplies to expand its home meal delivery program.

“Children’s Home Society (CHS) is extremely grateful for the emergency funds received from the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation and the SHF during the COVID-19 health crisis,” said Shelley Plauché-Adkins, Children’s Home Society of WV’s Regional Director.  “Many of the formerly homeless youth served through our Transitional Living Program have lost employment and are struggling with food insecurity.  These funds will enable Children’s Home Society to provide food boxes to 22 youth and their children over the next 12 weeks, which will ensure that our youth are being fed and greatly reduce their stress and worries during this difficult time.”

Funding to support these programs is made possible by generous donations from individuals and businesses to the PACF’s Hunger Fund (addresses food insecurity for local people) and Safety Net Fund (supports basic and emergency needs).  These two response funds concentrate on relief efforts in the Foundation’s 11-county service area. 

“We are very thankful for our community’s continued support of the Hunger and Safety Net funds,” said Clowes.  “These significant grants are only possible because of our great community support.  We anticipate making more distributions soon and we encourage the community to continue supporting these important charitable funds. We are very grateful for our donors’ help, enabling us to meet needs in our community.”

The PACF is actively contacting regional nonprofits to assess COVID-19 impact on their clients and communities and identifying ways to respond to the needs.  Agencies seeking assistance should contact the PACF at 304-428-4438 or by email to marian.clowes@pacfwv.com.

Donations to support the PACF’s Hunger Fund and Safety Net Fund are tax-deductible.  To learn more about these funds and the work that the Foundation is doing to address COVID-19 in our region, visit www.pacfwv.com/COVID19.

Parkersburg Area Community Foundation Donates 300 Boxes of Girl Scout Cookies

Tagalongs, samoas, and thin mints — oh yum!

Thanks to a recent gift from the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation, hundreds of area healthcare and grocery store workers will get a sweet treat.

The Foundation purchased $1,500 worth of cookies – 300 boxes – from the Girl Scouts of America of Black Diamond Council which will be delivered to four area businesses.

“It is so important to express our appreciation right now to those people who are helping all of us to get through this time of quarantine,” said Julie Posey, Parkersburg Area Community Foundation’s Development and Communications Officer.  “During these uncertain times, it is important to bring some brightness into someone’s day – definitely when that someone is a person who is working diligently during this pandemic.  We thought that cookies make everyone a little happier.  It’s also a way to help out our local Girl Scout Troops as well as many of the Troops now have cookies without the ability to sell them via their usual means.”

The Girl Scouts will make deliveries to WVU Camden Clark Medical Center and the Plum Street Piggly Wiggly grocery store in Parkersburg. 

In addition, deliveries will be made to Food Fair and to the Coplin Clinic in Ravenswood.  The cookie donations in Ravenwood are made possible by a donation from the Star Plastics Company on behalf of its employees in collaboration with the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation.  Star Plastics President and CEO Doug Ritchie said, “Our Company cares about its community.  We are very grateful to the staff of the Coplin Clinic for their important role in keeping us all well and the employees at our local Food Fair for their dedicated service to the public in keeping our grocery shelves well-stocked and their store open for business.”

The Foundation and Star Plastics wish to express their appreciation for those individuals who are working on the front lines during the COVID-19 pandemic.

EQT Foundation Supports West Virginia COVID-19 Response

As needs of West Virginia citizens, nonprofits, and communities grow in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, West Virginia businesses and citizens are stepping up with bold acts of generosity to respond to these needs.

This week the EQT Foundation has announced COVID-19 response grants to support West Virginia citizens and nonprofits in the communities where the company is located.   The EQT Foundation is donating $160,000 in total to West Virginia communities with grants to the Mountaineer Food Bank and relief funds at three West Virginia community foundations including the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation & Regional Affiliates.

On announcing the grants EQT Foundation President Ellen Rossi said, “The EQT Foundation is pleased to alleviate the burdens of this pandemic on West Virginia’s citizens and nonprofits.  Our commitment is to support the food bank and relief funds serving the communities of the state that we are working in.”  She added, “Our partnership with the community foundations and Mountaineer Food Bank helps us deploy rapid response funds to numerous organizations serving those in need within the communities we serve in West Virginia.” 

100% of the EQT Foundation gift to the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation will be used to support nonprofits and citizens in need in the Foundation’s eleven county service area. 

“EQT Foundation’s generosity and continued partnership with the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation will ensure that local needs that arise due to this COVID-19 pandemic are supported in a prompt and efficient way,” said Judy Sjostedt Ritchie, Executive Director of the Parkersburg Area Community Foundation.  “This gift will support our Hunger Fund and Safety Net Fund which are designed to provide timely relief funding to respond to the growing needs across our service region.” 

The PACF is awarding grants from its Hunger and Safety Net Funds to address food access and emergency needs of individuals and to provide operating support to nonprofit agencies delivering critical community services.  The need to support area nonprofits has increased significantly, as the demand for their services has risen while many of their fundraisers and events have been postponed due to the pandemic. 

“Support for the Foundation’s Hunger and Safety Net Fund is a direct investment in our community’s work right here in the Mid-Ohio Valley,” said Sjostedt Ritchie.  “In times of crisis, the Foundation remains committed to connecting donors with community needs effectively and efficiently.  Our community’s collective generosity is essential now more than ever.”

For more information about the EQT Foundation, visit: https://www.eqt.com/community/eqt-foundation/ .  For more information about the Parkersburg Area Community, visit:  www.pacfwv.com or call 304-428-4438.

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