ACT for Alexandria

ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund

From the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, we came together to support our neighbors affected by the pandemic. This spirit of collective action is core to Alexandria, and Alexandrians have responded by supporting those in need and contributing to the vitality and vibrancy of our community.   

Thanks to this generosity, the ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund, established by ACT and the City of Alexandria, has raised $1.19M in just three months. From these funds, The ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund has awarded more than $914,000 to more than 80 organizations providing emergency relief to support those impacted by the outbreak.

Click here for an infographic of the fund’s work so far.

Moving Forward

While the full extent of COVID-19's impact on our community is unknown, we know it will be long and deep due to pre-existing inequities. Our objective is to operate the ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund as long as Alexandrians are impacted by the virus, while also building a “new normal” that is more equitable and just.

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic disparities in healthcare and access to resources. The ACT Now Response Fund seeks to prioritize the groups disproportionately impacted by the virus.

For example, Black Alexandria residents die from the virus at a higher rate than their population share, and Hispanics/Latinos only make up 17% of the Alexandria population but account for more than 50% of COVID-19 cases.

We believe that these disproportionate impacts of COVID-19 is a racial equity issue and the pandemic has exacerbated the pre-existing inequities in our community.  Prioritizing racial equity in our grantmaking is the most effective way to respond to the needs of our community now and in the future. Click here to read the ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund Racial Equity Statement.

As of the end of May, we had granted nearly all of the money raised through the fund.  We have paused grantmaking as we focus on fundraising. At the end of June, we will establish a revised set of funding priorities in alignment with community needs and our commitment to racial equity. 

You can help by donating to the ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund.

The spirit of collective action is core to Alexandria. Now is the time for all of us to continue to come together to support those in need and to contribute to the vitality and health of our community. Will you join us in making a donation to the ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund?  Please know a donation of any size will make a difference!

Click here to see a list of nonprofits that received ACT Now COVID-19 Response Fund grants.

For Nonprofits 

We have paused the grant request process as we reassess community needs and priorities.  Revised grant guidelines will be available at the end of June.     

As the weeks progress, our understanding of the pandemic’s impact on Alexandrians evolves.  We are seeing that the financial and health challenges brought on by COVID-19 are not equally distributed.  People of color, immigrants and low-income families and individuals are experiencing more severe hardships. Based on feedback we received from our community survey and conversations, we will be re-examining the funding priorities of the ACT Now Fund and taking a pause on accepting new applications. 

About the ACT Now Fund

The ACT Now Fund was created to respond to the needs of nonprofit organizations providing critical services to Alexandrians in response to a significant community crisis, in this case, the COVID-19 outbreak.  We recognize that nonprofit organizations responding to this unanticipated crisis are seeing an increase in the demand for services and need financial resources to support the community and address these unexpected needs. 

In 2019, the ACT Now Fund was mobilized during the partial Federal Government Shutdown. The Fund provided $60,000 in emergency grant funding to help meet short-term unanticipated essential needs affecting community members such as emergency financial assistance, housing assistance, food and medical/health assistance, childcare assistance, among others.  For more information, click here.