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Press Release

United Way Worldwide Launches COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund

Alexandria, Va. (March 17, 2020) United Way Worldwide today announced that it has established the COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund to support communities affected by COVID-19. Donations from the fund will help the most vulnerable populations receive critical financial and social service support during this global crisis.  

Across industries, commerce is suffering as people remain in their homes. Hourly and tipped workers with little to no savings are already losing vital income, and as the economic impacts spread, many jobs may be at risk. As schools close, children who receive free meals at school are in danger of going hungry and low-income college students may not be able to afford transportation home as universities shutter their campuses. 

“While we are unsettled by the disruption to our lives from the effort to contain COVID-19; we know that many people also face the additional burden of the financial disruption or loss of critical services,” explained Brian Gallagher, President and CEO, of United Way Worldwide. “United Way has always been there for communities in need. Today we are proud to support the work of our local United Ways – through the COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund – to meet the needs of those who find themselves in crisis during these unprecedented times.” 

For over 130 years, United Way has been on the front lines of disaster response, delivering high-demand resources to communities in need and providing individuals with personalized help in crisis situations. United Way’s COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund will mobilize United Way’s network―covering 94 percent of communities across the U.S.―and help keep families in their homes, food banks stocked with staples and critical social services running.  Click here to see how local United Ways are supporting their communities through this crisis. 

Already, United Way has taken significant steps to address community needs during this time of unprecedented global crisis. By collaborating with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), first responders and community partners and corporations, United Way is tracking and filling resource gaps and providing real-time guidance, information and data on COVID-19 through the 211 network

In addition to launching the COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund, United Way is working to mobilize corporate partners who want to support those impacted by efforts to contain COVID-19.   

The National Football League and Everfi 
United Way, in partnership with the National Football League and Everfi, a leading education technology company, is providing – at no-cost -- access to Character Playbook: Healthy Relationships & Mental Wellness Basics, two innovative digital learning experiences for middle and high school students to support remote learning.    

United Way Worldwide and DoorDash are partnering to identify communities where we will facilitate grocery and meal deliveries to households in need through local partners. 

CommonSpirit Health 
CommonSpirit Health is a key partner of United Way’s work to connect people to services and improve health outcomes across the country. They have generously donated funds to support our national 211 response to COVID-19, and specifically to support local 211s in Washington and California. 

Donations to the COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund can be made by visiting: 

About United Way
United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. Supported by 2.9 million volunteers, 8.1 million donors worldwide and $4.8 billion raised every year, United Way is the world’s largest privately-funded nonprofit. We’re engaged in nearly 1,800 communities across more than 40 countries and territories worldwide to create sustainable solutions to the challenges facing our communities. United Way partners include global, national and local businesses, nonprofits, government, civic and faith-based organizations, along with educators, labor leaders, health providers, senior citizens, students and more. For more information about United Way, please visit Follow us on Twitter: @UnitedWay and #LiveUnited.  

About 211
211 is a vital service leveraged by millions of people across North America. Every day, clients contact 211 to access free and confidential crisis and emergency counseling, disaster assistance, food, health care and insurance assistance, stable housing and utilities payment assistance, employment services, veteran services and childcare and family services. Last year, the 211network responded to over 12 million requests for assistance across the U.S. The service is available to over 94% of the U.S. population, including in Puerto Rico and Washington, DC, and is also available in most of Canada. Individuals in need or who are looking for information for someone else can call 211 from a cell phone or landline or visit for more contact options.

Media Contact

United Way Worldwide 
Southerlyn Reisig 

Director of Public Relations 
(703) 836-7100 ext. 321