In Challenging Times: Generosity Soars
Earlier this spring, Blue Grass Community Foundation (BGCF) was gearing up for several exciting events centered on community, including On the Table discussions and Chris Stapleton’s Hometown State of Kind Benefit Concert at UK’s Kroger Field. But all of that grinded to a halt in mid-March as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolded. And while we weren’t able to physically gather together, it didn’t stop our charitable network of fundholders, donors and community leaders from working together to help those most in need.
For more than 50 years, through both good times and bad, BGCF has been the region’s go-to resource for philanthropic collaboration and leadership. During these unprecedented times, we were called upon by a variety of individuals and organizations to help facilitate community generosity.
When United Way of the Bluegrass wanted to create a COVID-19 relief fund, it reached out to BGCF to help make it happen. The Coronavirus Response Fund has already distributed more than a half million dollars to help feed the hungry, provide medicine and transportation to those in need and offer vital information in 10 languages.
“We are proud to partner with Blue Grass Community Foundation,” said Timothy Johnson, UWBG president and CEO. “As a coalition we can leverage and combine resources to assist more people and make meaningful impacts.”
When VisitLEX, E.E. Murry Family Foundation, Keeneland and FoodChain wanted to help unemployed hospitality workers and provide meals for the food insecure, they called on BGCF to establish the Nourish Lexington Fund. They have now provided 42,000+ meals across Fayette County.
BGCF is also part of an effort to sustain the arts. Closed galleries, cancelled performances and lost revenue for artists and arts organizations prompted LexArts to partner with BGCF to create the Arts Resilience Initiative. To date, more than $100,000 has been awarded to arts organizations and individual artists across the Bluegrass.
The COVID-19 pandemic illustrates one of BGCF’s unique strengths: We are here to provide a rapid philanthropic response when the community calls. Thanks to your generosity, more than $2 million has been raised through the Community Foundation since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic! Right now, we do our part by staying apart, but we are working together to help those who need it most.