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COVID-19's Impact on Black Communities

Across the country, the coronavirus pandemic is taking a vastly disproportionate toll on communities of color—with Black communities among the hardest hit. According to the CDC, nearly 30% of COVID-19 patients in the US are Black, yet African Americans make up only 13% of the national population.

In Brooklyn—home to the largest population of Black residents in the country—the economic, social, and health impacts of COVID-19 are increasing exponentially along racial lines: while Black elders are dying at high rates, we have seen Black communities subjected to unjust and often violent social distancing policing. Black business owners are among the least likely to have received Paycheck Protection Program loans. And overcrowded, deteriorating NYCHA developments are now considered disease transmission hot spots. 

Our Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund prioritizes support for urgent needs in Black and other communities of color, funding nonprofits committed to racial equity and led by people of color. Through the partnership and generosity of Brooklynites uniting in this moment, we have raised over $3 million for a racially just response to COVID-19 in our communities.

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While our efforts are making a difference, we know so much more must be done to end the disease's ravaging of Black communities and confront the immense impacts of systemic racism in our borough and across our nation. 

Join us this Thursday, May 21st for “The Impact of COVID-19 on Black Communities,” a live conversation with Heather McGhee, NBC News analyst, author, and inaugural Brooklyn Community Foundation Fair and Just Fellow, and Lurie Daniel Favors, Interim Executive Director at the Center for Law and Social Justice at Medgar Evers College. They will offer their analysis of what steps governments and communities can take to address the crisis and ensure a racially just recovery. 

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This week, we are also pleased to share the latest grants from the Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund, which include:

  • Neighborhood Housing Services of Brooklyn to help prevent foreclosures among African-American homeowners facing significant income loss
  • Public Housing Communities to provide personal protection equipment, including gloves and masks, to NYCHA residents  
  • Worker's Justice Project to support and protect day laborers and domestic workers, including providing financial assistance and personal protective equipment
  • Homecrest Community Services to provide emergency meal delivery to Asian seniors in Southern Brooklyn, prepared by a local Chinese restaurant.
  • Bushwick Mutual Aid to provide weekly groceries delivered by volunteers to more than 300 immigrant families.

View All COVID-19 Grants to Date

In total, 145 frontline organizations have received support from these weekly grant distributions. Your generosity makes it possible. Please donate today. 

Give to the Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund

Cecilia Clarke

President & CEO (She/Her/Hers)
While our efforts are making a difference, we know so much more must be done to end the disease's ravaging of Black communities and confront the immense impacts of systemic racism in our borough and across our nation.