In the past few months the University of Maryland community has come together to take action against COVID-19, ensuring resources are provided to those who need it most. From making masks to delivering groceries, Terps continue to make a positive impact, even in the face of uncertainty.
Rallying with the community, the Do Good Institute created a special COVID-19 Grant and awarded $15,000 to eight organizations who are addressing a variety of immediate challenges posed by COVID-19. Grants were distributed in two ways - matching grants to bolster fundraising efforts and direct grants for material costs to expand services or supplies.
We know that the effects of this pandemic will be long lasting, but after seeing all of the applications and the impressive outcomes from our first grantees, I’m confident that our community will continue to work together to support each other through this crisis.Cali Moore Program Coordinator & COVID Grant Manager
- Pawsible, an organization that supports individuals who are experiencing financial hardship while raising service dogs, launched a fundraising campaign to support puppy raisers who lost jobs or were experiencing hardships due to COVID-19. To support its campaign, the Institute awarded a $1,000 match grant which was met within their first few weeks of fundraising. These funds helped support nine puppy-raisers who were struggling to afford the necessary food and supplies for their puppies. Responding to widespread need, Pawsible is expanding from one chapter to nine new college campus chapters.
- ROOTS Africa, a nonprofit that connects academic institutions in the U.S. to farming communities in Africa, wanted to help keep families in Liberia and Uganda safe and enable them to protect themselves throughout the pandemic. ROOTS started a fundraising campaign and in just three weeks, leveraged our $2,500 match grant eight times over, raising more than $20,000 and providing 1,000+ families in Liberia and Uganda with all their essential needs for a month, allowing them to stay home safely and help flatten the curve in their communities. In addition to matching funds, ROOTS received dedicated coaching expertise to support their strategy and communications.
- TerpThon, a student organization that fundraises year-round for Children’s National Hospital, received a $2,000 match grant for their Giving Tuesday Now campaign which supported the Children’s National Hospital COVID-19 Emergency Action Fund. The Emergency Action Fund protects children by screening patients with symptoms in an urgent response tent outside the hospital, and maintains the hospital's supply of PPE to keep caregivers safe. The Emergency Action Fund also expands telemedicine options for families so they can be cared for without risking exposure at the hospital; and supports front-line workers by providing child care and transportation. TerpThon had a successful Giving Tuesday Now and raised more than $5,000 in a single day, including DGI's match.
Direct Fund Recipients
- DMV Fighting COVID, an organization launched at the beginning of the pandemic to supply PPE to essential workers, received a grant of $2,500 supporting the production and shipment of 3D printed face shields. Since March, the organization has donated more than 7,000 face shields and masks to more than 20 organizations including Holy Cross Hospitals, MedStar Montgomery Medical Center, and Children's National Hospital. The Do Good grant supported this effort, which covered the production of 5,100 face shields.
- Evolving Minds, an organization addressing depression, anxiety, stress, suicide, and burnout within youth and youth-serving professionals, received a $1,000 grant to move their Mindfulness For Professionals training online. Mindfulness For Professionals is an eight-week stress-reduction training for professional well-being where participants establish a mindfulness practice and integrate 10 core resilience-based skills into their professional environments. After a successful in-person launch, moving online allowed this training to be accessed while in quarantine, providing critical mental health resources to those who need it most in our new virtual world.
- Perfect Strangers, a newly formed organization providing free delivery of groceries, meals, medications, and supplies to at-risk populations, received a $2,500 grant to support their expansion. Funds are being used to safely recruit and onboard new volunteers and to provide them with the necessary PPE to be “perfect strangers.” To date, Perfect Strangers serves Boston, Philadelphia, and the greater San Francisco Bay Area with 4,000+ meal and medication deliveries each week.
- Quillo, an organization that uses technology and community to support caregivers of individuals with disabilities, received a $1,000 grant to create a series of videos that provide critical care information relating to quarantining and COVID-19. These 60-second videos feature caregivers and self-advocates (people with disabilities) across the country, capturing their stories related to COVID-19 (topics include social isolation and staying healthy, self-advocacy and staying active). Quillo expects to make 100+ 60-second videos with the support of the grant.
- Route 1 Mask Match, an organization started during the pandemic to provide handmade cloth masks to vulnerable neighbors in the Route 1 Corridor (4 square mile region between Mount Rainer and Greenbelt), received a $2,500 grant for supplies to create and donate handmade masks. Route 1 Mask Match has delivered more than 4,500 masks to individuals and families in need, workers in busy environments, seniors (60+), people with chronic health conditions, and those dealing with active COVID-19 infections. They have engaged more than 100 volunteers to sew, package, and deliver the masks in a safe manner, and were able to greatly expand their work with this grant.
The Do Good Institute is proud to support these dedicated organizations who are working to combat one of the world’s most pressing issues. For more information about The Do Good Institute’s response to COVID-19, visit our Resource Hub and Community Response Page.