Seattle Foundation grants $550,000 to community-based organizations with offices and services in East King County that are helping individuals and families navigate the health and economic impacts of COVID-19.
Seattle Foundation partnered with a coalition of East King County philanthropists and community leaders to establish the East King County Community Fund. As the impact of COVID-19 continues to unfold, community-based organizations play a critical role in providing services to those most impacted by the pandemic. Many are navigating increased need for services, working longer hours, and being asked to do more with less funding. To help address these challenges, the East King County Community Fund was established to provide general operating support grants to organizations supporting the immediate and sustained needs of East King County residents.
While many organizations are mobilizing to provide additional support, nonprofits deeply rooted in the community are best positioned to understand and address the unique needs of their communities. The East King County Community Fund awarded grants to nonprofit organizations that build upon their deep and trusting relationships with individuals and families in disproportionately impacted communities providing a variety of essential services. The Fund prioritized investments in Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) led and serving organizations located in the geographic region of East King County given the pandemic’s deep and economic impacts in these communities.
“We are grateful for everything our nonprofit partners are doing to support our East King County community during this difficult time,” said Sally Gillis, Managing Director, Strategy and Partnerships at Seattle Foundation. “Our nonprofit partners are facing many challenges and we appreciate their continued perseverance and determination to support our most vulnerable communities.”
Here are a few examples of the work our grantees are doing in East King County:
4 Tomorrow actively supports East King County’s rental assistance needs through the King County Eviction Prevention and Rental Assistance program. Through deep relationships with community, 4 Tomorrow staff have been able to pivot and support holistic needs of community at this time beyond housing. Their Life Services Program supports clients in accessing healthcare, co-creating solutions to obstacles, providing a path to citizenship, and connecting them with mental health support. Funding at this time will support the hiring of another full-time Life Services Administrator to support East King County residents outside of Bellevue and Kirkland.
“We were ecstatic to receive word from Seattle Foundation’s East King County Community Fund that they would be supporting our work. It is recognition of our work as a trusted provider, collaborator and supporter to our community,” – Monik Martinez, Executive Director, 4 Tomorrow.
Centro Cultural Mexicano has been providing services to the East King County community since 2018. They have supported the Latino community throughout the pandemic and most recently facilitated vaccine appointments for over 6,500 Latino community members at the Microsoft King County Vaccination Partnership-Redmond site. They are on track to distribute almost $1 million in rent assistance in East King County, and actively connect Spanish-speaking communities to resources including small-business assistance, food assistance, legal services, medical services, and immigration services. All of their services are free, culturally relevant and linguistically appropriate. Demand for services are increasing and they want to hire additional staff to be able to respond to requests for support.
“Thank you, East King County Community Fund. Throughout the pandemic, we have continued to empower our community through information and services. With help from the East King County Community Fund, Centro Cultural Mexicano will continue to be in conversation with community to learn about their needs and work to address them. Our community trusts us and relies on us and we are honored and privileged to be able to serve in this capacity.” – Angie Hinojos, Executive Director, Centro Cultural Mexicano
Eastside Legal Assistance Program (ELAP) has been offering legal help for over 30 years in East King County. ELAP provides legal education and assistance directly to community members. Services are available to individuals regardless of their legal status or language needs. For example, educational webinars are streamed for public viewing via Facebook and Zoom, and are recorded, saved and posted on the website for future viewing. Funding will support their outreach efforts and allow them to serve more clients in their legal clinics, housing stability program, and community education webinars.
“I am very appreciative of our partnership with Seattle Foundation and the East King County Community Fund. Since the beginning of the pandemic, legal needs of community members have grown exponentially. Thousands of individuals have lost income and fallen behind on their rent or had to deal with family stresses, health issues, or fallen into debt. With unrestricted support from Seattle Foundation we will be able to help many in our community address their legal needs.” – Jerry Kroon, Executive Director, Eastside Legal Assistance Program
Below is the complete list of our 2021 East King County Community Fund grantees:
- 4 Tomorrow
- Africans on the Eastside
- Attain Housing
- Bellevue Lifespring
- Centro Cultural Mexicano
- Chinese Information and Service Center
- Congregations for the Homeless
- Consejo Counseling and Referral Service
- Eastside Baby Corner
- Eastside Legal Assistance Program
- EastWest Food Rescue
- Friends of Youth
- Global Social Business Partners
- Grassroots Projects
- Immigrant Women’s Community Center
- King County Promotores Network
- Kits For Peace
- MAPS Muslim Community Resource Center
- NAMI Eastside
- Prison Scholar Fund
- Rainier Athletes
- Snoqualmie Valley Food Bank
- Snoqualmie Valley Shelter Services
- The Sophia Way
- Turkish Women Charity and Aid Organization (TURCHA)