Building Philanthropy for a Better Florida

Florida’s First Coast Relief Fund Awards Grants to 9 Agencies

April 30, 2020

Florida’s First Coast Relief Fund has granted more than $110,000 to nine nonprofit organizations based in St. Johns and Putnam counties to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. These agencies are on the front lines of supporting residents with food, financial assistance and shelter. Florida’s First Coast Relief Fund is a collaboration of United Way of St. Johns County, United Way of Northeast Florida, The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida, the Jessie Ball duPont Fund, and the Jacksonville Jewish Federation and Foundation of Northeast Florida. It was created following Hurricanes Matthew and Irma, and re-activated to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Across our community, life has been disrupted due to the speed and severity of Florida’s necessary but devastating COVID-19 safer-at-home order,” said Melissa Nelson, president and CEO of United Way of St. Johns County. “The disruption can be exceptionally frightening — not just for those who were financially vulnerable before the crisis, but for so many more who are now wondering how significant the blow will be to their family. Parents, and many of our senior citizens, are worried about keeping a roof overhead or food on the table. The need has escalated to alarming levels, and the support provided by Florida’s First Coast Relief Fund is desperately needed.”

Nonprofit agencies in St. Johns County that have received funding so far include:

• Catholic Charities (St. Augustine) to provide Financial Assistance

• St. Francis House to provide Shelter

• Epic-Cure to provide Food Assistance

• Hugs Across the County to provide Food Assistance

• Betty Griffin Center to provide Shelter

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