The Athens Area Community Foundation is donating $40,000 of its COVID-19 Community Response Fund to 18 nonprofit organizations. (Courtesy Athens Area Community Foundation)

The Athens Area Community Foundation will release $85,000 in its second round of donations to organizations assisting with housing and sheltering, according to a news release.

This wave of donations is about 35% of the AACF’s COVID-19 community response fund. In the release, AACF specified that the money is not restricted to nonprofits funded by United Way of Northeast Georgia.

AACF started its community response fund to assist nonprofit organizations with “pressing needs,” according to the AACF website. AACF released $40,000 as their first round of funds to organizations focused on food distribution on April 23.

AACF reviewed data from the United Way of Northeast Georgia’s 211 contact center, the Athens Wellbeing Project, community insight and county government knowledge, according to the release. It then chose 18 organizations in a 12-county region to distribute the funds to, including the Salvation Army Athens and the Athens Area Homeless Shelter.

The nonprofit organizations that are receiving the funds focus on supporting people who are affected by, or at risk for, homelessness, partner violence, chronic health conditions, behavioral health and substance use disorders, according to the release.

AACF has set up on its website a Nonprofit Assessment Tool, which is a survey that nonprofit organizations can take to “tell their stories,” according to the website. The goal of this survey is to allow supporters to see the ways that the nonprofit community is responding to the impacts of COVID-19 and opportunities for investment, according to the website. But this is not an application for funding for the COVID-19 Response Fund.

AACF is still accepting donations for their COVID-19 Community Response Fund. They have not specified when they will release their third wave of funds.

“A place to weather the storm — physically, emotionally and mentally — is something every person deserves,” Kay Keller, president and CEO of United Way of Northeast Georgia said in the release “We are thankful for these organizations who are ensuring people have that, whether that’s being able to stay in their own home with rent assistance or find shelter through one of these organizations so they can hopefully sleep more soundly and safely.”

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