There’s no doubt that charities have been among the hardest hit in this pandemic. Arts organizations were suddenly without an audience; social service agencies faced significant new expenses to serve clients safely, while usual revenue streams fell – often dramatically.
Charities need our help now, more than ever, and the Victoria Foundation is responding.
The Community Recovery Program supports federally registered charities and qualified donees in the Capital Region with flexible, general operating funds in response to the social and economic impacts COVID-19 has had on these organizations.
“We view these grants through the lens of recovery efforts and building resilience for our local charities for the short and long-term,” says Sandra Richardson, Victoria Foundation CEO. “The pandemic has shown even more clearly what we’ve always known: how vital these organizations are to our region. The Community Recovery Program will help organizations weather this storm and emerge stronger for the future.”
Unlike the Foundation’s Community Grants, applied to specific projects, Recovery Program grants can be applied to operating expenses, recognizing budget challenges charities face at a time when planned fundraisers, donations and other revenue streams have become difficult. “Many charities don’t need project money right now, they need money to survive and continue doing their vital work,” explains the Foundation’s Rob Janus.
While the successful Rapid Relief Fund launched at the pandemic’s outset addressed immediate needs of local social service agencies, the Community Recovery Program builds capacity across sectors, from arts and environment to education and health.
How you can help: Community Action Funds
The Community Recovery Program is funded in part by donations made to the new Community Action Funds. In addition to the broad-ranging Vibrant and Caring Community Fund, which allows the Foundation to respond to critical needs as they arise, nine more focused funds allow you to give to causes that matter most to you, knowing funds will address the most pressing needs.
Community Action Grants include:
- Arts and Culture Fund
- Education and Learning Fund
- Environment and Sustainability Fund
- Food Security Fund
- Gender Equity Fund
- Health and Wellness Fund
- Homelessness Prevention Fund
- Racial Equity and Reconciliation Fund
- Rapid Relief Fund
By combining your gift with other donations, you’ll have maximum impact within a shared area of interest. Like the Rapid Relief Fund that was established at the outset of the pandemic, funds will be released on a rolling basis, allowing the Foundation to respond quickly to evolving community needs. Organizations may only submit one funding request, as funds are limited.
“By drawing upon our strong community connections, the Victoria Foundation will continue its long history of addressing the greatest needs, opportunities and innovations within each of the fund areas,” Richardson says.
Established in 1936, the Victoria Foundation is Canada’s second oldest community foundation and the sixth largest of nearly 200 nation-wide. To date the Victoria Foundation has invested more than $259 million in people, projects and non-profit organizations that strengthen communities in BC and throughout Canada.