Staff meetings and conference with clients are held masked and outside at Community Partnership Family Resource Center in Divide. 

When the coronavirus struck the nation in March, Community Partnership Family Resource Center went into an immediate pivot.

Within a few days of the shutdown announcement, Jodi Mijares director of the nonprofit organization, and her staff, launched a food pantry. “As other agencies started closing, schools, churches, they brought us their food,” Mijares said. “So it just kind of happened.”

During the first 45 days of the pandemic, the partnership provided more than a year’s worth of emergency aid to families in Teller County, Mijares said. As well, with a 60% increase in unemployment in March, the staff helped more than 250 people apply for unemployment benefits.

At the same time, Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation did its own pivot in launching the Responsive Community Relief Fund. “For our current grantee partners, we tried to understand what they needed and to be as flexible as possible,” said Amy Maillet, DDCF communications manager.

This month, the foundation awarded the organization $50,000 to help sustain the multiple programs that enhance the lives of children and families.

“We’ve lost $400,000 in anticipated funding for the next 12 months,” Mijares said. “The grant from Delta is the only one we received in the last six months that was not related to COVID.”

The grant is a lifeline for the partnership. “We’re feeling precarious about our programs,” Mijares said. “Currently, our reserve is covering the difference, so we have some time to seek out new sources of funding for regular operations to continue.”

The partnership, based in Divide, is one of several family resource centers to be awarded a collective $2 million in emergency funding from the Delta foundation. “This year, the foundation looked at the whole health of the person, embraced the philosophy of helping families achieve mental, physical and financial stability,” Mijares said. “We fit that philosophy.”

The Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation views the grants as a partnership with family resource centers. “We love doing outreach with the rural communities to understand what the communities are facing,” Maillet said.

Load comments