Grand Haven

Community’s generosity takes COVID-19 response fund beyond goal

In less than seven weeks, more than 525 individuals, organizations, and funds came together to contribute more than $300,000 to the Grand Haven Area Community Foundation (GHACF) for a total of more than $600,000 for the Restoring Hope Challenge Match. 

The money is for the Community Relief & Recovery Fund, which was established to respond to the short- and long-term impact COVID-19 will have on individuals, families, and for-impact partners within Northern Ottawa County.

“Initially, we set an informed goal of raising $150,000 and matching dollar for dollar. Based on the needs of our for-impact partners and the generous outpouring of support, we extended and doubled the campaign,” says Chris Riker, Vice President of Advancement and Donor Services at the GHACF.

Focused grants

As of the July 31 campaign deadline, more than $650,000 had been contributed and matched.

Grants have been awarded to support core operations in an effort to allow organizations to fully support Northern Ottawa County communities. Priority was granted to organizations serving individuals, families, and/or communities most impacted by COVID-19. 

Areas of focus include accessible nutrition, access to arts and culture, education, front-line fatigue, physical and mental health, safe housing, and vulnerable communities such as seniors and youth.

$250,000 awarded

The first and second grant rounds have already awarded more than $250,000 to area for-impact partners. 

“While more information about the grant-making and impact will be shared soon, it’s important for us to celebrate this milestone and to applaud how this community has rallied to care for one another,” says Riker. “The level of support has been inspiring, and we are extremely grateful to all those who contributed.”

As Northern Ottawa County continues to progress in reopening, it is imperative that local organizations are provided the support necessary to not only adapt their operations, but sustain their missions, in an effort to fully care for their neighbors in this continued time of need.

“As the situation continues to evolve, our for-impact partners are learning more about their needs and sharing those needs with us,” says Riker.

Donations still accepted

Donations can still be made to the Community Relief & Recovery Fund on the GHACF’s Donation Page or by check — please include CR&R Fund in the memo line — to the Grand Haven Area Community Foundation at One South Harbor Drive, Grand Haven, MI 49417.

The GHACF has been serving the Northwest Ottawa County community for nearly 50 years and is the eighth-largest community foundation in Michigan. It encourages philanthropy by individuals, families, corporations, and organizations, and serves as a steward of their charitable funds and legacies. 

In addition to awarding grants, the foundation offers technical support to nonprofits, convenes community leaders on issues of importance, and advocates for the nonprofit sector. The Allendale Community Foundation and Coopersville Area Community Foundation are affiliates of the GHACF. 

Read more about GHACF initiatives:

14 ways grants are making a difference in the Grand Haven area

Foundation matching donations to Restoring Hope fund for COVID-19 relief

Foundation’s $1.5 million investment targets creation of workforce housing

Emergency grant funding keeps mental health services going

Emergency grants help nonprofits get more food, services to those in need

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