Phase 4 COVID-19 Relief Grant Recipients Announced


United Way announces $208,000 in Phase 4 COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund Grants

Dec. 1, 2020 - The United Way of Monroe County COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund announced Phase 4 grants totaling $208,000 to 25 human service organizations providing critical programs serving people in south-central Indiana. With support from the COVID-19 Fund, these organizations will continue to provide life-changing services to members of our community affected by the pandemic.

With the addition of the Phase 4 grants, the COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund has granted nearly $1.6 million to 46 human service organizations in Greene, Monroe, and Owen counties and regional community foundations to support priority needs during the pandemic.

Phase 4 of the COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund continues to support critical safety net needs, while also anticipating rebuilding our community and charting a course toward a better normal, in which racial and economic disparities are addressed and every person has equal access to opportunities. This work will focus on resilience: resilient individuals, resilient communities, and a resilient safety net. Funded projects range from food security and housing to youth services and substance use disorder recovery.

Building resilient individuals focuses on programs and activities which build healthy interpersonal relationships, productive coping mechanisms, and peaceful conflict management so that individuals are better prepared to take advantage of life’s opportunities. Building resilient communities focuses on programs and activities which assure that community members engage strong support networks to more effectively navigate or mitigate hardship. And building a resilient safety net focuses on programs and activities which support individuals’ basic physiological and safety needs.

Phase 4 grant recipients include:

  • Amethyst House: $10,000
  • Area 10 Agency on Aging: $9,565
  • Beacon, Inc. (Shalom Community Center): $5,000
  • Bloomington Pets Alive Inc.: $5,000
  • Bloomington Refugee Support Network: $4,000  
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Bloomington: $10,000
  • Catholic Charities Bloomington: $9,449
  • Community Foundation of Bloomington and Monroe County: $25,000
  • Courage to Change Sober Living: $4,000
  • El Centro Comunal Latino: $10,000
  • Flourish Inc: $2,926
  • HealthNet Bloomington Health Center: $10,722
  • Hoosier Hills Food Bank: $15,000
  • Indiana Recovery Alliance: $10,000
  • LIFEDesigns, Inc.: $15,500
  • Monroe County United Ministries: $1,738
  • New Hope for Families: $5,000
  • New Leaf - New Life: $3,500  
  • Pantry 279, Inc.: $8,000
  • South Central Community Action Program: $2,400
  • The Salvation Army: $5,000
  • The Society of St. Vincent de Paul serving Monroe County: $7,500
  • United Way of Monroe County: $18,700
  • Wheeler Mission: $5,000
  • Youth First, Inc.: $5,000

To see a full list of how funds will be used visit  

"Going into the winter months is always challenging for older adults and homebound individuals. This year is exponentially more challenging,” remarked Chris Myers, Area 10 Agency on Aging Executive Director. “For the 500 individuals in Monroe and Owen counties we provide home-delivered meals and Mobile Food Pantry services, Area 10 really wanted to offer a bit of extra food security for these months ahead and are so thankful to the United Way for funding five shelf-stable meal packs for each person. A little security goes a long way!”

Area 10 Agency on Aging received a $9,565 grant to provide rural transportation and meals to homebound seniors. Monroe County United Ministries was awarded $1,738 to help safely serve the 250% increase in clients at their food pantry during the pandemic. Indiana Recovery Alliance will use their $10,000 grant to purchase life-saving supplies for individuals experiencing substance use disorder, in addition to paying the staff during a year that has seen drastic revenue loss.  

“LIFEDesigns is grateful for the recent grant from the United Way of Monroe County. As a result of the COVID pandemic, almost all community activities, day programs, and employment opportunities for our clients disappeared,” shared Russell Bonnano, LIFEDesigns Chief Executive Officer. “Because many of our clients find it difficult to express themselves verbally this has frequently resulted in challenging behaviors. This grant has made it possible for us to engage a Board-Certified Behavior Analyst who specializes in working with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. His involvement will be of immeasurable benefit to our clients and those who live with and support them every day.” 

A committee of cross-sector community partners identified critical needs and resource gaps to guide decisions regarding the COVID-19 Fund. The granting committee includes representatives from the Bloomington Health Foundation, City of Bloomington, Community Foundation of Bloomington and Monroe County, Monroe County Government, Indiana University, and United Way of Monroe County.

“As we approach a full year of facing a pandemic, we are grateful for the generosity of this community, which allows us to be responsive to evolving critical needs,” remarked Efrat Feferman, United Way of Monroe County Executive Director. “It is not easy to balance between fulfilling the immediate survival needs of so many, especially as cold weather sets in, and the recovery and resilience-building needs of others, but we will continue to work overtime to assure both responses are ongoing as long as the need in our community exists.”

Phase 4 of the fund received more than $530,000 in grant requests from 34 organizations.  

COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund supporters include BKD CPA’s and Advisors, Bloomington Elks #446, Bloomington Health Foundation, Bloomington Sunrise Rotary, Bloomington Township, Blueline, Boston Scientific, Buskirk-Chumley Theater, City of Bloomington, Community Foundation of Bloomington and Monroe County, Cook Medical, Duke Energy, Etch Clothing Co., First Financial Bank, First United Church, First United Methodist Church, Hoosier Energy, Indiana United Ways, IU Credit Union, IU Credit Union Volunteer Board of Directors, Ivy Tech Foundation, Kappa Kappa Kappa Alpha Chapter, Lilly Endowment, Inc., Monroe County Government, Old National Bank, Owen County State Bank, Perry Township, Renaissance Rentals, Salesforce, Smithville Charitable Foundation, Susan Yeley Homes, Tim Ellis Realtors, Truist Foundation, United Way of Monroe County, United Way Worldwide, University Tees, Van Buren Township, and private gifts from individual donors.

Organizations serving Brown, Greene, or Owen counties should contact their respective community foundation for information on the application process to receive funds. Links can be found at

Local Resources

Individuals in need of services including food, shelter, childcare, financial assistance, and more are encouraged to search or to call  
2-1-1 to connect to the right help.

Community-wide resources and updates are centralized at by the Greater Bloomington Chamber of Commerce in partnership with a cross-sector coalition of partners.

Individuals may text COVIDRELIEF2020 to 44-321or visit to make a contribution to the Emergency Relief Fund.


About United Way of Monroe County: United Way of Monroe County is a nonprofit organization that improves people’s lives by addressing critical needs today and working to reduce those needs tomorrow. Through its Community Action Fund and grant initiatives, United Way works with 24 member agencies and community partners to ensure families have opportunities and everyone can meet basic living needs.