United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona Adds More Money to COVID-19 Relief Fund

United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona has announced that it has committed an additional $120,000 for its COVID-19 Relief Fund. 

The new funds will be distributed to five of its community partners, including YWCA, Interfaith Community Services, Our Family Services, Family Housing Resources and Primavera Foundation to help local individuals and families struggling from the effects of the pandemic.

To date, United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona has distributed this support through grants to 35 organizations. Some of the key statistics in that distribution include:

  • 78,376 people have received help with basic needs during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • 1,817 household requests for critical needs have been filled.
  • 5,229 people received direct emergency support across Southern Arizona, including 2,482 children.
  • 73,147 households have received support through distributions with food banks, diaper banks, meal programs, and more.
  • 14,625,160 pounds of food have been distributed to date.
  • $26,409 worth of health supplies and diapers have also been distributed to children, families, and older adults in need.

In one example of how this support can help, Maya is a single mom and full-time student with two young sons. She no longer has childcare for her sons because the childcare center closed due to COVID-19 and her child support stopped. She is working hard to clean houses and do landscaping to make ends meet, but she is struggling to pay her rent. Funds from this grant will help this struggling single mom from falling behind on her rent.

Magdalena Verdugo, CEO of YWCA in Tucson and a key partner agency, said, “Here at the YWCA, with the support of United Way, we are looking forward to continuing our work and building a future where all people are supported and valued.  Thank you for helping the YWCA continue with its mission of eliminating racism and empowering women.”

Tom McKinney, CEO of Interfaith Community Services, said, “We are honored to receive this grant from United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona. With this support, ICS can continue to compassionately serve those members of our community who are in vital need of services that help stabilize their housing, employment, food, and healthcare situations.”

Laurie Mazerbo, Chief Program Officer/Interim CEO of Our Family Services, said, “This much needed funding for basic needs is a gift to the clients we serve at Our Family Services. Often, other funding sources don’t cover all items and even if they do our funding is limited.”

“Although your United Way moved quickly to meet the challenge, there is still much to do to help devastated families become whole again. United, with our partners, we’re coordinating efforts to help families not only recover, but rebuild.” said Tony Penn, president and CEO of United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona.

“As we shift to the rebuilding phase of our response, we’re still seeing rising eviction rates, housing shortages and food insecurity amongst our most vulnerable community members.” he continued.

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