COVID-19 Response Fund for Forsyth County awards first grants

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 9, 2020

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

More than $1 million awarded to 15 local nonprofits to help community members

A total of $1,062,000 has been awarded to 15 local nonprofits in the first announcement of grants awarded from the COVID-19 Response Fund for Forsyth County. These awards will ensure rapid funding for nonprofit organizations meeting basic needs for community members impacted by the pandemic, including food, shelter, housing, and emergency financial assistance. Additional grants will be announced as they are made.

Grants announced from the COVID-19 Response Fund for Forsyth are:

  • Bethesda Center for the Homeless — $100,000 to provide critical shelter services for homeless population and emergency financial support for housed individuals and families to pay for rent, utilities and food
  • Cancer Services, Inc. — $50,000 to provide increased funding for direct financial assistance for clients
  • Crisis Control Ministry Inc. — $100,000 to provide essential needs for an increase in struggling community members needing assistance with rent and mortgage payments, client services food pantries, and a free licensed pharmacy
  • Eliza’s Helping Hands, Inc. — $20,000 to assist undocumented, low-income, and low wage income residents with rent, utilities, counseling services, transportation, and food and clothing
  • H.O.P.E. of Winston-Salem, Inc. — $16,000 to provide nutritious meals to children at risk of hunger to accommodate additional weekday meals in addition to weekend deliveries since local children are now out of school
  • Imprints Cares — $100,000 to offset tuition costs for essential personnel who meet income guidelines and need emergency childcare during the health crisis
  • Legal Aid of North Carolina — $100,000 to keep tenants in housing by providing support and attorney representation for mediation with hotel/motel landlords to resolve payment agreements and use funding to pay all or part of the monetary settlement agreed upon in mediation
  • Neighbors for Better Neighborhoods — $20,000 to increase the capabilities of neighborhood groups and individuals in Forsyth County with high-tech engagement to connect community members with aid resources through social media, phone conferences, video conferencing, and deliveries
  • Samaritan Ministries — $91,000 to support higher risk guests and increased demand for emergency shelter for homeless men and daily lunches through its community Soup Kitchen
  • Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina, Inc. — $100,000 to support expansion of its reach and implement new approaches for food assistance in response to the COVID-19 crisis
  • The Salvation Army — $100,000 to support increased needs for two food pantries, food delivery to seniors and to those with limited transportation, Center of Hope Family Shelter, and emergency financial assistance to clients impacted by the crisis
  • Union Baptist Church — $50,000 to provide increased requests for food, clothing, and other essential resource needs for low-income single parents, seniors, and the homeless
  • Whole Man Ministries of NC — $40,000 to support economically disadvantaged individuals and families with rent, utilities, essential household items, transportation, mental health support, internet, and connections to aid
  • Winston Salem Rescue Mission — $100,000 to support the residential program for men receiving housing, recovery services, food, transportation, and pharmaceutical supplies
  • YWCA of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County — $75,000 for programming at the Best Choice Center and Hawley House, supporting expanded educational and food programs for children, residential substance abuse recovery, and health management

United Way of Forsyth County President and CEO Cindy Gordineer notes, “Priority in this grantmaking has been given to nonprofits addressing the basic needs of community members — for rent assistance, food needs, help paying for regular medication, as well as to support those who provide medical services and support. We are fortunate to have such a strong community of nonprofits able to move quickly to provide these critical services to those most impacted.”

Since the fund was announced less than three weeks ago, more than $3.3 million has been committed to the fund from corporations, groups, individuals, and local government.

“Thanks to the generosity of all who have given so far, we are distributing over $1 million to organizations that are directly assisting individuals in need,” said Scott Wierman, president of The Winston-Salem Foundation. “However, this is just the beginning, and what we’ve raised will not be nearly enough. It’s critical that we continue to grow the response fund to address the immense community needs that we’re only beginning to see.”

Grant applications to the fund are currently being received on a rolling basis, and funding decisions will be made within two weeks of application. Future funding phases will be developed by evaluating the funds available, community needs, and government response.

About the COVID-19 Response Fund for Forsyth County

United Way of Forsyth County and The Winston-Salem Foundation launched the  COVID-19 Response Fund for Forsyth County on March 18 to support a range of nonprofit organizations assisting members of the community during the coronavirus pandemic, particularly those most vulnerable. United Way of Forsyth County and The Winston-Salem Foundation are administering the Fund, charging no administrative fees.

Applications are being reviewed on a rolling basis and grant decisions made by representatives from the City of Winston-Salem, Hanesbrands, Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, the Ministers’ Conference of Winston-Salem and Vicinity, Reynolds American, Truist, United Way of Forsyth County, Wells Fargo, and The Winston-Salem Foundation.

To contribute to the COVID-19 Response Fund, go to or text COVID19Forsyth to 71777 (msg and data rates may apply).

Corporations and foundations: to donate by check or ACH, contact Meridith Whitaker, Director of Philanthropic Services at The Winston-Salem Foundation, at (336) 604-5032 or