Dear Friends and Stakeholders,
COVID-19 and the impact it may have on our healthcare system and vulnerable populations is dominating the news and social media. Much of this information is speculation, but few can deny that this epidemic will have, and is already having, a large impact. I am writing to tell you about the Community Foundation of Dunn County’s (CFDC) preparation for the possible impact of Coronavirus on our operations and community.
CFDC’s Business Continuity Plan
Should the need arise for CFDC to close its office, the staff will have remote access to the CFDC server, grant and accounting software, and will be available to check voicemail. CFDC can also be reached by e-mail.
Regarding upcoming events, we will continue to monitor the situation carefully and are working to determine the best course of action.
The Women’s Giving Circle Membership Meeting scheduled for April 22 at Jake’s Supper Club is postponed until further notice. Please register and pay if you are able, and rest assured that if the Foundation should cancel this event instead of rescheduling, we will offer a refund, or, if you prefer, work with Jake’s on an alternative solution that supports them during this difficult time.
The CFDC continues to plan for its Annual Luncheon on April 30 at the Off Broadway Banquet Center in Menomonie. However, we understand that this too can change. We certainly understand you may feel some hesitancy about responding to the invitation at this time. If you’d like to register, or if you have done so already, rest assured that if the Foundation should cancel this event, we will offer a refund, or if you prefer, process your registration as a donation, or hold it should we reschedule.
Impact on Nonprofits
The impact on nonprofits will vary on several levels, but primarily in two forms: the impact on their revenues, expenses and operations from potentially closing their physical facilities and/or canceling events; and the increased demand for services. The CFDC always encourages nonprofits to prioritize the development of reserves in order to weather challenging situations such as the one we currently face. In addition, we urge all nonprofits to take the threat of Coronavirus seriously and prepare operational contingency plans now.
Nonprofits providing health services and support for those who may lose work because of the economic downturn and therefore need food, housing, health care and other services may face significant demand. Donors can support nonprofits in meaningful ways through contributions, including grants recommended by holders of donor advised funds at the Foundation. We encourage donors to connect with nonprofits that are important to them and find out what help the organizations might need to weather the crisis.
How do we approach this as a community foundation? The CFDC is collaborating continually with the Eau Claire Foundation, Community Foundation of Chippewa County, United Way of the Greater Chippewa Valley, United Way of Dunn County and our local area’s private foundations to meet the needs of our area nonprofits. We recognize that the pandemic is causing a range of needs in our county, and our team is already at work identifying the appropriate roles the Foundation should play and how we can best support our community.
Great Rivers 2-1-1 has a 24 hour toll free hotline (211) available in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa that has information, referrals, and crisis support for individuals needing immediate services. They also have translation services available.
Protecting the Health of Our Community Together
We all hope for a speedy end to this health care crisis. However, during the crisis we can ease the anxiety and tension by remembering that every person and organization is facing unforeseen challenges each day. We embrace these challenges because to proceed with business-as-usual would jeopardize the health and safety of our families, friends, colleagues and neighbors. Through action, compassion, and common sense, our community can and will weather this storm.
Thank you for your patience and understanding.
Georgina Tegart, Executive Director