30 Apr Anonymous donor gives $300,000 to help coronavirus relief efforts
April 29, 2020
ELKHART, Indiana – An anonymous local businessman and his wife have donated $300,000 to help the community cope with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
The donation is being divided three ways between the COVID-19 Community Response Fund, a partnership between United Way of Elkhart & LaGrange Counties and the Community Foundation of Elkhart County, and local nonprofits Faith Mission and Church Community Services. The couple made similar $300,000 donations under the pseudonym “Secret Santa” in December of 2009 and December 2011.
As COVID-19 has caused businesses to temporarily close, the donors saw a parallel to previous periods of economic turmoil and were moved to act.
“We simply could not wait until Christmas, as the need is growing like a snowball rolling down a hill,” they said. The anonymous donors hope that their gift inspires other local philanthropists to support their community in this time of need. “Nothing would please us more than to play second fiddle, to be thought of as elves when the Santas of Elkhart County who can really make a difference step up.”
United Way and the Community Foundation are spearheading a community-wide response to the pandemic through the COVID-19 Community Response Fund. The fund is focusing on the areas of childcare for first responders and healthcare workers, food security, support for those most at-risk, and community advocacy.
Faith Mission provides shelter and other services for homeless individuals. Church Community Services provides emergency assistance, job training, and other services.
The gift comes at a time when many nonprofits, especially those that offer assistance with basic needs, are seeing a large increase in need.