Baton Rouge, La. — The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation has announced its commitment of $5 million to meet the needs of communities rebuilding in the wake of Hurricane Laura. To date, C100 members have contributed roughly $7.65 million to the relief effort.
This $5 million includes two $1 million grants to organizations that will make funds immediately available for relief and response in the Lake Charles area. These two grants will be announced in the coming days. The remainder of the grant funds will be distributed through the Foundation’s Community Crisis and Disaster Response grant fund.
Community Crisis and Disaster Response Grants
The Foundation will make grants of up to $250,000 for nonprofits providing services in the sixteen parishes with the highest level of disaster declarations outlined by FEMA. Nonprofits can use grant funds to meet immediate needs like food, clothing, shelter, healthcare and more. Grants can also be used to meet long-term needs such as ongoing patient education and care navigation, economic recovery efforts and more.
Grants of up to $50,000 are available to nonprofits providing relief outside of those sixteen parishes. Community Crisis and Disaster Response Grants support general operating costs, as long as those costs are in support of relief efforts.
“Our goal is to give Louisiana’s nonprofit sector, which is often the front line of providing relief following a natural disaster, the tools and flexibility they need to support their communities,” said Michael Tipton, president of the Foundation, who noted that the Foundation is accepting applications immediately.
The Foundation is joining with other funders across the state to meet immediate needs and coordinate philanthropic spending for maximum impact, said Dan Borné chair of the Foundation’s board of directors.
“It is critically important to step up for our neighbors in this time of need. Recovery will be difficult, but through teamwork Louisianians will meet the challenge. When grantmakers, foundations and companies work together on major responses like this one, we make it easier for organizations to access the funds and resources they need to keep people safe, healthy and ready to rebuild,” Borné said.
Earlier, this year, the Blue Cross Foundation’s board allocated $5 million for organizations providing support to those impacted by COVID-19. With this additional allocation of $5 million, which can be used to respond to COVID-19, Hurricane response and the ways these two disasters are related, this brings the Foundation’s total funding made available to support fellow Louisianians in times of disaster to $10 Million throughout 2020 on top of the Foundation’s normal grant-making.
The full request for proposals, as well as the application for all grant programs are online at www.bcbslafoundation.org/disastergrants.