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Supporting Our Community

Responding to Coronavirus


About the Fund

The Columbus Foundation’s Emergency Response Fund was activated on Monday, March 9, 2020,​ to help Franklin County nonprofit organizations as they assist those in our community affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Within a week of launching the fund, grants were already being deployed to help nonprofits support the most vulnerable in our community.

We are one community. During times of crisis it is critical we join forces to support each other. The Foundation is committed to being a point of access for those who seek to assist others, while also working with our nonprofit partners to put these resources to greatest use in the community.



As of March 30, 2021, the Emergency Response Fund has granted $7.9+ million to 160+ Franklin County nonprofit organizations. View the full list of grants from the Emergency Response Fund. Here are some of the organizations that received funds.

Action for Children was granted funds to support IT hardware and software to allow remote work as the organization delivers technical assistance, and for the pandemic childcare interactive map.

The Buckeye Ranch received a grant to support several apartments at My Place to house youth identified by Star House as medically compromised or who have a newborn.

WOSU Public Media was granted funds to cover COVID-19 programming, including Spanish-language translation, distance education, and storytelling.

A grant was made to Cristo Rey Columbus High School to support three months of internet hotspots for 40 students.

Volunteers of America was awarded funds to cover staff overtime and technology improvements in the emergency shelter and supportive housing.

The awarded funds from the Emergency Response Fund to The Refuge went to providing uninterrupted services to the men’s and women’s long-term substance abuse treatment programs during this time when the residents are unemployed.

With funds from the Emergency Response Fund, Central Community House was able to support technology purchases for youth, increase hours for van drivers, increase staff hours replacing volunteers, and direct client assistance.

With their awarded funds, Welcome Warehouse could distribute personal care items (soap, shampoo, toothpaste, and deodorant) to an estimated 6,500 youth receiving meals at Dublin City Schools’ Grab-n-Go breakfast and lunch.

$300,000 Largest Grant
200+ Approved Grants
$42,000 Average Amount Granted
$7.9+ million Total Amount Granted to Franklin County Nonprofits

In the News

CityScene (10/26/20): Columbus organizations give back


Columbus Business First (07/31/2020): With Columbus K-12 students starting the year virtually, here's what the Columbus Foundation is doing to address the digital divide


The Columbus Foundation (07/28/2020): The Columbus Foundation Announces $500,000 to Seed a Fund Addressing Digital Divide


The Columbus Foundation (07/01/2020): The Columbus Foundation Releases Community Assessment of Broadband Access


Columbus Dispatch (05/07/20): Perseverance, luck key to finding face masks amid coronavirus pandemic


Columbus Dispatch (05/04/20): COVID-19 hits hardest in communities of color


Columbus Business First (05/02/20): 'A root canal of my psyche': Columbus Foundation CEO on securing 100,000 KN95 masks from China 


Columbus Underground (04/30/20): Columbus Foundation donates 50,000 KN95 masks to local organizations


NBC4i (04/29/20): Buckeye Ranch helping teens who aged out of foster system just before pandemic hit


Columbus Dispatch (04/24/20): The journey to renewed health lies with service


Senior Housing News (04/21/20): ‘I was infuriated’: Ohio Living CEO channels anger into action during COVID-19


ABC6 WSYX/WTTE (04/20/2020): (CEO Corner) The Columbus Foundation providing help during the coronavirus


Columbus Business First (04/01/20): Columbus agencies get creative as coronavirus strains social safety net


10TV WBNS (03/30/20): Sen. Portman donates salary through end of May to charities helping coronavirus response


Columbus Business First (03/27/20): Here are Columbus resources available for businesses during the coronavirus pandemic


ABC6 WSYX/WTTE (03/25/20): Meals on Wheels gets $200K boost from Columbus Foundation during COVID-19 emergency


Columbus Business First (03/24/20): Nationwide Foundation to contribute $5M to Covid-19 response


ABC6 WSYX/WTTE (03/23/20): Columbus Crew SC owners donating $1.5 million to coronavirus relief funds


Columbus Underground (03/20/20): Middle West Spirits, The Columbus Foundation Partner on Sanitizer for First Responders


Columbus Dispatch (03/19/20): Central Ohio distilleries making sanitizer in fight against new coronavirus


10TV WBNS (03/17/20): Donor gives $1 million to Columbus Foundation for support of nonprofits during coronavirus pandemic


Columbus Business First (03/16/20): Here's how the Columbus Foundation is helping nonprofits respond to the coronavirus outbreak