COVID-19 Community Response Fund

United Way Fox Cities and the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region partnered to establish the COVID-19 Community Response Fund. The fund within the Community Foundation supports local nonprofit and other community organizations engaging in immediate basic needs relief, short-term response, and longer-term recovery in Outagamie, Calumet, Shawano, Waupaca and the Neenah-Menasha area of Winnebago counties impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency.

How to make a donation:

The Community Foundation is waiving all credit card and administrative fees for this fund. Every dollar donated into the fund will be put into action in the community.

  • Donate online at
  • Checks can be made payable to the Community Foundation/COVID-19 and mailed to Community Foundation, 4455 W. Lawrence St., Appleton, WI 54914.
Donors to the COVID-19 Community Response Fund:

Since the Community Foundation and United Way established the fund March 17 with $50,000 each, many individuals, funders and businesses have stepped up very generously to contribute. Updated donor recognition will be made available every Friday on the Community Foundation website.

Granting approach:

Currently the fund is in “Phase One” of granting, addressing immediate basic needs for people who are disproportionately affected by the crisis. This phase includes proactively identifying potential grant recipients and using input, guidance, and research from organizations and others in the community to make grant decisions.

As the crisis and long-term impacts continue to unfold, the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region and United Way Fox Cities will continue to assess and consider evolving the granting approach into subsequent phases for many types of nonprofit organizations. The grants committee meets on a weekly basis to understand needs and make decisions.

How to apply for funding: 

In order to move resources quickly and not further burden nonprofit organizations, during Phase One there will not be a formal application process. Nonprofits providing immediate basic needs relief can email United Way to share their needs so they can be considered during the granting process.

COVID-19 Community Response Grants:

(This list will be updated regularly as grants are awarded.)

Vulnerable Populations
  • Bridge the Gap: A $20,000 grant supports offering services and programs in new ways for families with youth, teens and adults on the autism spectrum in the Shawano County area.

  • Bletzinger Rehabilitation House: A $10,000 grant supports residents’ needs while living in the transitional apartment-based group home for adults diagnosed with both mental illness and substance abuse issues.

  • Compassionate Home Health Care: A $5,000 grant supports personal care, hygiene and cleaning supplies to children, elderly individuals and those with disabilities or special needs.

  • Forward Services Corporation: A $10,000 grant supports the purchase laptops, technology equipment and high-speed Internet access tools to lend to participants in its Wisconsin Works and FoodShare Employment and Training job training programs.

  • Exceptional EquestriansA $5,000 grant supports the DePere-based organization’s equine-assisted therapy programs for physically, emotionally and cognitively challenged children, teens and adults.

  • Vets and Friends of Wisconsin: A $2,500 grant supports the safe reopening of the organization's coffee house and pantry, which supports area military veterans.

  • WisconSibs: A $5,000 grant supports safe summer programming for siblings of people with disabilities who are in need of respite and connection with others who understand what they’ve been experiencing during the COVID-19 crisis. 

  • CASA of the Fox Cities: A $4,000 grant supports office and in-home visitation services that are focused on helping abused and neglected children in local courts achieve placement in safe and permanent homes.

  • Girl Scouts of the Northwestern Great Lakes: A $2,400 grant supports care packages for girls from Appleton and Menasha who are participating in its Reaching Out program.

  • CP Fox Cities: A $5,000 grant supports technology equipment for adults with varying developmental and cognitive disabilities, enabling them and their caregivers to participate in the organization’s virtual programming and tele-support.

  • Diverse & Resilient: A $10,000 grant supports restarting a support group and leadership development for LGBT youth ages 14-18 and transitioning and it to become part of Diverse & Resilient’s Room to Be Safe program.

  • Goodwill Industries of North Central Wisconsin: A $50,000 grant supports the organization’s employment and work skills training programs in Calumet, Outagamie, Waupaca and Neenah and Menasha of Winnebago counties that help people with barriers enter or return to a workforce that could look different following the COVID-19 crisis.

  • SOAR Fox Cities: A $5,000 grant supports technology equipment to empower people of differing abilities who are most in need, based on isolation and financial need.

  • Beaming, Inc.: A $5,000 grant supports equine therapy when in-person sessions reopen for individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities and emotional/behavioral health needs.

  • Bridge the Gap: A $5,000 grant supports food for clients on the autism spectrum in Shawano County through adult, middle and elementary school life skills programs.

  • Valley Packaging Industries: A $25,000 grant supports critical community programs, such as mental health telephone services, basic needs assistance, video employment planning and early intervention for people with disabilities in Outagamie, Calumet, Waupaca and the Neenah/Menasha area of Winnebago counties.

  • Apricity: A $15,000 grant supports the safety of staff and clients while providing treatment, and employment and support to people affected by substance use disorders, primarily in Outagamie and the Neenah/Menasha area of Winnebago counties.
Safe Shelter
  • Foundations for Living: A $10,000 grant supports crisis intervention and counseling services.

  • American Red Cross in Northeast WisconsinA $20,000 supports 52 people who were displaced after an apartment fire in Menasha on June 20. Due to COVID-19 social distancing and safety requirements, the chapter’s usual temporary shelter options are not adequate, so people are being safely lodged at two hotels and are receiving meals and assistance with basic needs. 

  • CASA of the Fox Cities: A $1,000 grant supports virtual training for community volunteer advocates to help abused and neglected children in local courts achieve placement in safe and permanent homes.

  • Pillars: A $90,000 grant supports social distancing efforts to reduce the chance of infection for residents from two shelters assisting people in Calumet, Outagamie and Winnebago counties (includes the Neenah-Menasha area).

  • COTSA $20,000 grant supports basic needs and other essential services to the transitional shelter's residents, most of whom have lost their jobs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Foundations for LivingA $10,000 grant supports care for people experiencing homelessness and financial crisis in Waupaca County.

  • SAM 25A $5,000 grant supports basic needs through the Shawano Area Matthew 25 homeless shelter and resource center.

  • Mission of Hope HouseA $10,000 grant supports care and services to people who are experiencing homelessness through the New London-based shelter.

  • Harbor House Domestic Abuse ProgramsA $10,000 grant supports proper staffing coverage for providing essential services to survivors of domestic abuse who are living at the shelter.

  • Christine Anne Domestic Abuse ServicesA $5,000 grant supports emotional and basic needs, and safety planning to individuals in crisis.

  • Safe Haven – Domestic Abuse Shelter of Shawano CountyA $5,000 grant supports emergency shelter, food, hygiene products, gas cards, diapers, and other basic needs.
  • The FRESH Project

  • Casa HispanaA $5,000 grant supports the delivery of food boxes each week to families in need, some of whom do not qualify for other food related assistance.

  • New Holstein Christian Center Food PantryA $5,000 grant supports the pantry's ability to serve residents during its weekly distribution times.

  • Waupaca Farm Market: A $2,000 grant supports its SNAP/WIC assistance program that enables people on food assistance to get healthy, fresh produce in person or via online and home delivery options.

  • Heart of the Valley Food Pantry (Kimberly): A $3,500 grant supports an increased number of people from the Fox Cities who are seeking food assistance during the COVID-19 crisis. 

  • Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin and St. Joseph Food Program: A $50,000 grant supports the Fox Valley Food Partnership Project, a joint effort led by the two organizations, which includes food and personal safety purchases, and coordination of drive-thru and home delivery distribution methods. 

  • Shepherd’s Watch Community Center: A $1,000 grant supports food for the pantry and meals on wheels service for people living in the Mattoon, Birnamwood and Aniwa areas of Shawano County.  

  • Boys and Girls Club of ShawanoA $2,500 grant supports relief bags with food and other basic necessities to club members and their families in Shawano County.

  • St. Joseph Food Program: A $15,000 grant supports the new drive-up method of distributing food weekly to people in the greater Fox Valley area, primarily from Neenah to Kaukauna.

  • Vivent Health: A $10,000 grant supports home delivery of food to families living with HIV in the Fox Cities area.

  • Waupaca County Senior Meals Program: A $5,000 grant supports nutritious meals for home-bound people age 60 and older in Waupaca County.

  • YouthGo: A $5,000 grant supports virtual programming by adding activity kits so youth participants can connect, chat, and create while at home, and food and personal essentials for families.

  • Fox Valley Community Table: A $2,000 grant supports food for free box lunches that are distributed every Tuesday and Saturday in the parking lot of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Neenah.  

  • Clintonville Area Food Pantry: A $1,500 grant supports more immediately needed food staples, such as eggs, milk, meat, fruits and vegetables.

  • Helping Hands Food Pantry: A $1,500 grant supports food for people in need through the Shawano County pantry in Cecil.   

  • Brillion Food Pantry-St. Vincent de Paul: A $2,500 grant supports more food to meet increased need.

  • Freedom Food Pantry: A $2,500 grant supports more food to meet increased need.  

  • Feeding America Eastern WisconsinA $50,000 grant supports purchasing additional food, distributing food to pantries, sanitizing the food bank, paying critical staff who receive and transport food, and removing obstacles so pantries can receive food quickly.
Child Care
  • Community Child Care Center: A $2,000 grant supports improving WiFi bandwidth that will be used with distance-learning activities for elementary students who are onsite for before and after school care.

  • Boys & Girls Clubs of the Fox Valley: A $25,000 grant supports young child and school-age care at its Appleton and Menasha locations for children of essential workers and those in the child welfare system. The clubs will continue providing about 550 free meals to kids each weeknight via a drive-thru service, in addition to providing free breakfast and lunch each weekday to the 350 children in the youth development program.

  • Community Child Care Center: A $3,000 grant supports a quality and safe environment for children attending this Kimberly-based center serving families in Outagamie, Calumet and the Neenah and Menasha area of Winnebago counties.

  • BABES, Inc.: A $5,000 grant supports remaining connected to families who are experiencing high stress during the COVID-19 crisis to prevent child abuse and neglect by providing safe, no-cost respite care, educational services and counseling.

  • Child Care Resource and Referral: A $5,000 grant supports urgently needed supplies for child care programs serving essential workers in Calumet, Outagamie, Waupaca and the Neenah/Menasha area of Winnebago counties.

  • Grow With Us Child Care Center: A $5,000 grant supports availability and accessibility of child care services for essential workers in the Black Creek area and other nearby rural areas of northern Outagamie County. 

  • Day Care Center of New London: A $3,000 grant supports day care services for children of essential workers in New London and other nearby rural areas of Outagamie and Waupaca counties. 

  • Little Angel Child Care: A $5,000 grant supports continued care for low-income and special needs children in Outagamie County with family members employed by essential businesses. 

  • Boys and Girls Clubs of the Fox Valley (Appleton and Menasha locations): A $10,000 grant supports care for children and youth of health care and other essential workers, and free meals to kids each weeknight.

  • YMCA Fox CitiesA $35,000 grant supports early childhood programming that's operating at three childcare centers in Appleton and Neenah, serving children of health care and other essential workers.
Financial Assistance
  • Community Clothes Closet: A $5,000 grant supports increasing its low clothing inventory to enable it to provide an estimated 800 area children with needed clothes during its annual back-to-school event.

  • Family Caregivers Rock: A $1,500 grant supports items for in-home caregivers in Outagamie, Waupaca, Calumet and the Neenah and Menasha area of Winnebago counties who are experiencing greater stresses of caring for loved ones.

  • New Holstein St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry: A $2,500 grant supports financial assistance and food for residents.

  • Calumet County Salvation Army: A $5,000 grant supports financial assistance to families in Calumet County who are struggling during the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Options for Independent Living: A $10,000 grant supports basic needs related to housing, food and at-home equipment for people with disabilities and older adults in Outagamie, Calumet, Waupaca, Shawano and the Neenah and Menasha area of Winnebago counties.

  • World Relief Fox Valley: A $5,000 grant supports urgent basic needs of refugees and immigrants in Appleton, Menasha and Neenah.

  • LEAVEN: A $50,000 grant supports basic needs financial assistance, preventing struggling households from slipping into greater poverty, homelessness and ill health.

  • St. Vincent de Paul Neenah/Menasha: A $20,000 grant supports vulnerable people in the Neenah and Menasha areas who need urgent assistance with food, transportation, housing, and other basic needs.

  • Community Benefit Tree: A $5,000 grant supports basic needs assistance to people from Calumet, Outagamie, Shawano, Waupaca and the Neenah-Menasha area of Winnebago counties who are struggling with a medical crisis, including COVID-19.

  • Jake’s DiapersA $5,000 grant supports purchasing diapers to be distributed to agencies helping Shawano County families meet their basic needs.

  • CAP ServicesA $5,000 grant supports basic needs for people living in Outagamie and Waupaca counties.

  • Fox Valley Veterans CouncilA $5,000 grant supports the Veterans Emergency Fund, to provide emergency basic needs assistance to veterans.

  • St. Vincent de Paul-AppletonA $20,000 grant supports urgent requests for assistance with food, transportation, housing, and other basic needs.
  • Tri-County DentalA $20,000 grant will support hiring a dentist to work in the clinic two days a week to continue meeting the needs of its patients.

  • Rawhide: A $20,000 grant will support safely providing residential and counseling services and financial assistance to at-risk youth and their families in the Fox Valley Region.

  • Innovative ServicesA $7,500 grant will support safely providing support services to people with developmental disabilities and other varying needs living independently in their homes and in the organization’s facilities in the Fox Valley area.

  • Oxford House, Waupaca: A $4,800 grant will support keeping its three sober living houses open for people in need of transitional housing while in addiction recovery.  

  • Samaritan Counseling Center: A $12,557 grant will support safely conducting emotional wellness check-ups with students from 10 K-12 school districts in the tri-county area and purchasing HIPPA-compliant Zoom accounts for therapists engaged in providing services online. 

  • CatalpaA $25,000 grant supports safety improvements that will allow them to resume psychological testing with patients under age 12, enable its team members to become certified in tele-mental health, and provide technology to improve and continue delivering telemedicine.

  • LEAVEN: A $10,000 grant supports the high demand in the Fox Cities area for emotional CPR (eCPR) training, a public health education program that teaches people how to support another person experiencing emotional crisis. The grant also supports expansion of the local eCPR Warmline and the addition of three certified practitioners.

  • ApricityA $50,000 grant supports residential treatment recovery support services and additional food expenses in its transitional residential treatment houses during the COVID-19 crisis.

  • N.E.W. Mental Health ConnectionA $45,000 grant supports the membership costs for the 80 members of The Connection. Nonprofit members annually invest in its work, but the COVID-19 crisis has created financial hardships for these organizations. The Connection leads the collaboration of community stakeholders to create and continuously improve an exceptional mental health system of care for people in Outagamie, Winnebago and Calumet counties.

  • Center for Suicide AwarenessA $5,000 grant supports an increase in requests for suicide prevention materials from area community organizations, medical offices, police and fire departments, COVID-19 testing sites, churches, and individuals.

  • Innovative Services: A $10,000 grant supports safely providing services to people with developmental disabilities and other varying needs in the Fox Valley area.

  • St. Paul Elder Services: A $5,000 grant supports enhancing the lives of aging individuals through virtual connections between its facility residents, family members, and friends.

  • ALS Wisconsin Association Chapter: A $5,000 grant supports the medical equipment loan closet in Appleton that provides specialized equipment such as motorized chairs and speech devices typically not covered completely by insurance to people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) living in Outagamie, Calumet, Shawano, Waupaca and the Neenah/Menasha area of Winnebago counties.

  • American Cancer Society: A $5,000 grant supports free transportation and lodging for cancer patients and their families from Calumet, Outagamie, Shawano, Waupaca and the Neenah-Menasha area of Winnebago counties.

  • Beaming, Inc.: A $5,000 grant supports virtual therapy and preparations for reopening for in-person equine therapy with increased safety measures in place.

  • Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin: A $10,000 grant supports moving in-home Parent Connection education and early learning programs and first-time parent programs to a virtual environment to continue supporting and strengthening Fox Cities families.

  • Us 2 Behavioral Health Care: A $15,000 grant supports therapy to Fox Cities area residents using a culture-first approach to trauma-informed care. 

  • Hope Clinic and Care Center: A $10,000 grant supports uninsured and underinsured people in the Fox Cities with free healthcare support during the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Lutheran Social Services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan: A $10,000 grant supports the counseling clinic in Appleton as they continue to provide essential services via telehealth.   

  • Volunteer Fox CitiesA $5,000 grant supports Phone Pals, an outreach program developed in conjunction with the COVID-19 Community Solutions Team that uses volunteers to make friendly phone calls to isolated, homebound residents in Outagamie, Calumet and Neenah/Menasha area of Winnebago counties who may be vulnerable to mental health issues, depression, loneliness and anxiety during the public health crisis.

  • Sexual Assault Crisis Center: A $1,000 grant supports the organization’s move to a virtual environment to conduct its work, which involves providing no-cost crisis intervention and medical and legal advocacy for victims of sexual assault or abuse, their families and friends in Outagamie and Calumet Counties.

  • Friendship PlaceA $10,000 grant supports adults with mental illness, especially during the COVID-19 crisis, which is causing an increase in severe mental health symptoms of its members.

  • Family Services: A $1,000 grant supports telehealth services for children, youth, and adults in the Fox Valley area.

  • Thompson Center on Lourdes: A $10,000 grant supports mental and emotional well-being of adults age 50 and older by focusing on needs related to loneliness, isolation, and depression during the state’s safer at home order.

  • New Hope CenterA $5,000 grant supports services for people with disabilities in greater Calumet County continue providing critical personal care for residents in its homes, apartments, and group homes.

  • Mosaic Family HealthA $5,000 grant supports patients from Outagamie, Calumet, Waupaca, and the Neenah/Menasha area of Winnebago counties with reducing medication costs and providing urgently needed transportation for those experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.