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$60,000 in Coronavirus Relief Grants Distributed in NKY

Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky has announced its next round of funding to be released during the coronavirus pandemic.

The following organizations will receive immediate funding:

  • NKY Digital Equity Initiative for Students (facilitated by United Way of Greater Cincinnati – Northern Kentucky), $34,500 to bring internet access to K-12 students for summer learning
  • Esperanza Latino Center of NKY, $15,000 for rent, utilities, and other emergency supports for the Hispanic/Latino families they serve
  • Be Concerned, $10,000 to purchase a new automated pallet jack and additional food supplies

These additional grants bring the total to nearly $500,000 distributed directly from the Horizon NKY Coronavirus Relief Fund, which has raised more than $2 million to date for its emergency efforts in Northern Kentucky.

“Northern Kentucky is beginning to open its doors and gauge where its biggest gaps are,” said Horizon Community Funds President Nancy Grayson. “Fortunately, the entrepreneurial, supportive spirit of Northern Kentucky will accelerate our progress, even in these times. Horizon Community Funds will complement existing efforts and help fill in the gaps quickly, with a steady hand and careful eye on our community’s entire landscape of needs.”

Individuals and businesses are encouraged to donate by:

  • Texting “NKYRELIEF” to 44-321
  • Visiting www.horizonfunds.org
  • Mailing a check made payable to Horizon Community Funds (memo: NKY Coronavirus Relief Fund): 50 E. RiverCenter Blvd., Suite 430, Covington, KY 41011

“COVID-19 exposed the importance of access to technology, especially when it comes to virtual learning,” said Moira Weir, president and CEO of United Way Greater Cincinnati. “The Digital Equity Initiative will ensure no student is left behind. Maintaining educational and social ties during COVID-19 is the way to academic growth and positive mental health. This project is a perfect demonstration of the NKY spirit. Partners coming together for the common good.”

Preliminary data shows that approximately 11 percent of all Northern Kentucky students lack access to internet in their homes. Through a partnership between NKY school districts, United Way of Greater Cincinnati (UWGC) and Cincinnati Bell, eligible students will receive prepaid basic internet service in their homes for six months.

The Horizon NKY Coronavirus Relief Fund advisory committee considers nonprofit funding requests on an ongoing basis, focusing on organizations currently providing prioritized supports to Northern Kentuckians.

Other grants distributed from the fund include:

• Meals on Wheels of Southwest Ohio and Northern Kentucky, $200,000 for Senior Meals on Wheels

• Be Concerned, $150,000 for food, cleaning products, and hygiene products

• Faith Community Pharmacy, $35,000 for critically needed medications

• Sweet Cheeks Diaper Bank, $30,000 for diapers and feminine hygiene products

• Learning Grove, $6,000 for delivery of essential goods to families

• St. Vincent de Paul – Northern Kentucky, $4,500 for emergency family assistance

"Thanks to Horizon Community Funds and all of their gracious supporters, Esperanza Latino Center of NKY was able to assist 25 Latino families from NKY with rental payments throughout the month of May,” said Esperanza Center Director Reid Yearwood. “This support provided much needed relief and prevented these hard-working families from losing their homes during such a difficult time. Esperanza Latino Center, on behalf of the community we serve, would like to give a big GRACIAS to everyone involved with the Horizon Coronavirus relief efforts.”

Funds will be released on a rolling basis as fundraising continues throughout the remainder of the outbreak and recovery phases of the crisis, making it possible to move resources quickly and adapt to evolving needs in subsequent funding phases.

“The additional funding from Horizon Community Funds has been a huge help,” said Be Concerned Executive Director Andrew Brunsman. “We've learned a lot as we've distributed over $100,000 worth of product over the past 2 months. This new funding will help us be able to more safely and efficiently move the tremendous amount of food we are providing to partners by allowing us to have a powered pallet jack. The funds will also help address the gap of the food needs of local international students and students seeking assistance from FUEL NKU's food pantry. We've learned a lot throughout this experience, and it's been great that Horizon Community Funds has been with us every step of the way to make sure they are helping fill as many gaps to feed as many people in need in NKY as possible.”

-Staff report