Local Response Fund Gives $100K to Northeast Health District, Ga. Dept of Public Health for Equitable Vaccine Outreach and Distribution

Tuesday, April 6th, 2021

Vaccines are critical to ending the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, equitable vaccine opportunity is an issue, with barriers like transportation, access, vaccine hesitancy, and registration difficulties. To help mitigate some of these challenges, the COVID-19 Community Response Fund granted $100,000 to the Northeast Health District, Georgia Department of Public Health for vaccine outreach and distribution with a focus on equity by location and target population. This donation specifically focuses on diversity of outreach, site locations, vaccine recipients, and partner agencies.

Hosted by the Athens Area Community Foundation in partnership with United Way of Northeast Georgia, the COVID-19 Community Response Fund focuses on funding organizations providing immediate relief aid and recovery in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, donors have contributed more than $500,000 and the fund has made six distributions to 55 organizations and school systems totaling $418,000.

“COVID-19 has amplified not only the needs in our community, but the inequities. Vaccine access is absolutely essential, and we need to make sure that everyone can both get to a vaccine site and feel comfortable getting a vaccine,” said Kay Keller, President and CEO of United Way of Northeast Georgia. “There should be nothing standing in the way of someone getting a vaccine if they want it. Everyone deserves to be healthy, and to ensure the health of their family and friends.”

“Local philanthropy during the pandemic has exceeded all expectations. As we work to match exceptional giving with great need, we believe the next distribution of funds to Northeast Health District, Georgia Department of Public Health is the right investment in the continued work of the COVID-19 Community Response Fund,” said Sarah McKinney, President and CEO of the Athens Area Community Foundation. “Accelerating vaccine outreach, access, and distribution throughout our communities is essential. We are honored to support them in this work across Northeast Georgia.”

The Athens Area Community Foundation and United Way of Northeast Georgia are grateful for the financial contributions of more than 380 individuals, organizations, and businesses including contributions from Alice and Noah N. Langdale, Jr. Foundation, anonymous donors, Betty and Davis Fitzgerald Foundation, CareSource Foundation, First American Bank & Trust, Foundation for the Carolinas, George A. Ramlose Foundation, Georgia Power Foundation, Ross & Leigh Campbell with Georgia Skin Cancer & Aesthetic Dermatology, Saint-Gobain Corporation Foundation, South State Bank, The Caterpillar Foundation, The Hanover Insurance Group Foundation, The Huffer Foundation, The Wilbur and Hilda Glenn Family Foundation, Truist, Zeist Foundation, and Athens Area Community Foundation Fundholders.

The fund is still open and accepting donations. Anyone can help by making a donation to the COVID-19 Community Response Fund. To make a donation, please visit www.athensareacf.org or mail a check to AACF, PO Box 1543, Athens, GA 30601 with COVID-19 Fund in the memo. Funds are granted to organizations based on greatest need according to data, community insights and assessments. The funding is not restricted to current United Way of Northeast Georgia or other collective nonprofit-funded organizations.