March 17 2020

Initial Funds to Provide For The Essential Needs of Highly Vulnerable Populations with Priority Focus on Central Valley and Inland Empire

LOS ANGELES – The California Endowment today announced the first phase of the foundation’s urgent funding response to the COVID-19 pandemic in California. Grants totaling $5 million are being commissioned to support public health efforts and the immediate social and health services needs of highly vulnerable Californians, including farm workers/day laborers, the homeless and undocumented individuals.

“Our Board of Directors intends to set a tone of responsiveness and support for communities and populations at high risk for being impacted by this pandemic,” said Shawn Ginwright, a Professor of African American Studies at San Francisco State University and Chair of The California Endowment Board of Directors. “We look forward to engaging California’s public and private sectors as partners standing strong together to protect the public health and safety of our families, neighbors, communities of all races, ethnicities, sexual orientation and identities.”

In addition to supporting community clinics serving the most vulnerable on the front lines of this epidemic, funding will be provided to regional community partner foundations which will deploy the resources to local non-profit organizations that provide essential social and health services to vulnerable Californians and to statewide networks and associations focused on health care delivery and public health systems. Additional funding will be targeted to those most likely to be severely impacted by COVID-19 due to lack of awareness, language barriers, and lack of access to health care, including the homeless, low-wage earners such as farm workers and day laborers, and undocumented Californians.

Bishop Minerva Carcaño, Vice-Chair of the Board and a leader in the United Methodist Church, noted that “This is a critically important time for Californians to embrace and affirm that we are in this together, that a sense of belonging is critical for community wellness, and that we can only stem the tide of this pandemic if we stand together in solidarity and action.”

While the Inland Empire and Central Valley have been identified as a priority for these resources, regional funding will also be targeted to Los Angeles County, Orange County, San Diego County and Bay Area and Far North regions.

“It’s especially important we focus our limited resources on the most marginalized and vulnerable regions and populations,” said Robert K. Ross, MD, president and CEO, The California Endowment. “These early investments will help protect the public health of all Californians by providing essential health and social services to those who too often struggle to get by.”

About The California Endowment

The California Endowment, a private, statewide health foundation, was established in 1996 to expand access to affordable, quality health care for underserved individuals and communities, and to promote fundamental improvements in the health status of all Californians. Headquartered in downtown Los Angeles, The Endowment has regional offices in San Francisco, Sacramento, Fresno and San Diego, with program staff working throughout the state. From 2010-2020, The Endowment will focus the majority of its resources on its 10-year strategic plan Building Healthy Communities. For more information, visit The Endowment’s Web site at www.calendow.org.

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MEDIA CONTACT:  Jeff Okey, 213-928-8622 or jokey@calendow.org

 

 

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