Insights to Impact

The Latest from Brooklyn Community Foundation


Facing Our Most Difficult Week Yet, New Grants Support Vulnerable Workers

In Brooklyn, we are witnessing the horrific human toll of the coronavirus on our communities. We have lost nearly 700 Brooklynites to COVID-19, and many thousands more are very ill, out of work, and struggling to care for themselves and their loved ones. 

As the virus deepens and spreads across our borough, we are seeing a profound impact on communities of color who make up almost 70% of Brooklyn’s population.  People of color are not only more likely to be essential workers who cannot stay home and out of harm’s way, but also more likely to face pre-existing conditions like diabetes, hypertension, and asthma, in addition to inadequate healthcare, economic insecurity, and crowded and unsafe housing.

Fortunately, Brooklyn is showing up for its neighbors: we have raised $1.4 million and counting for our Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund, and as of today, we have given out nearly $400,000 for emergency relief. We are working hard to deploy funding as quickly as possible and will continue to announce new grants each week. 

While there is a great sense of urgency right now, we also know that the effects of this pandemic will be long-lasting—and we are here for the long-term. Please support the borough’s increasing need with a donation to the Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund. 100% of your contribution will go to frontline organizations here in Brooklyn.

Important Fund Update for Donors: Join us Thursday, April 9th at 12:30pm for a webinar with Foundation President and CEO Cecilia Clarke, Program Officer Sabrina Hargrave, and Lorena Kourousias, Executive Director of Mixteca Organization. They will discuss the latest on the Fund and the impact of this crisis on undocumented immigrants. RSVP

Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund Grants

This week, new funds provide support for vulnerable essential workers, assistance for women and young people recently released or currently detained on Rikers Island, home delivered meals for elders, and much more. Learn more about all of our grantees.

Vulnerable Essential Workers: 

  • CABS Home Attendants Service, Inc is providing supplies to protect frontline home care workers so that they can safely care for over 800 vulnerable Brooklynites
  • Yemeni American Merchants Association is distributing Bodega Safety Kits with protective gear and bilingual health and safety information for essential store workers
  • Unlocal is providing remote benefits screenings for undocumented immigrant restaurant workers

Emergency Food Assistance: 

  • Neighbors Together is transitioning its sit down community cafe to provide take out meals for homeless and low-income Brooklynites 

  • Riseboro Community Partnership is providing meal delivery to 800 seniors who previously received meals at its now-closed senior centers

  • Brooklyn Movement Center is using its Central Brooklyn Food Coop to provide food relief to hungry families

Incarcerated and Returning Women and Youth:

  • Ladies of Hope Ministries is providing stipends for food delivery for women recently released from Rikers Island and New York State prisons

  • Friends of Island Academy is providing support to 80 youth who have returned home from jail to neighborhoods throughout Brooklyn, and 45 Brooklyn-based youth currently in custody at Rikers Island and Horizon Juvenile Center. 

View all COVID-19 Grants to Date

Once again, thank you for your generosity and concern for your fellow Brooklynites. We are all in this together. 

While there is a great sense of urgency right now, we also know that the effects of this pandemic will be long-lasting—and we are here for the long-term.