KC groups create relief fund, hoping to raise $10 million for those affected by coronavirus

Tracking Coronavirus

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The need has never been greater, and now Kansas City’s business and philanthropic community are coming together to help, hoping to provide at least $10 million in aid.

“What we are hearing is that this need is going to be deep, and it’s going to be pervasive in our community,” said Debbie Wilkerson, head of the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation.

The nonprofit has joined with United Way, Mid America Regional Council and several other organizations to marshal resources and create the Kansas City Regional COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund.

“The philanthropists in our community are stepping up in very big ways,” Wilkerson said.

In fact, almost every big-name business in the metro has volunteered, as well as multiple foundations.

Together, there are more than 25 that have opened their pocketbooks. The foundation has big goals, raising at least $10 million to help people in an unprecedented period of need.

“I think we are going to hit that and even far exceed because we think the need is going to extend far beyond that initial goal,” said David Warm, head of MARC.

The Hall Foundation and the Sunderland Foundation have agreed to match up to $5 million to any money raised.

The fund will distribute grants to nonprofits assisting people affected by the virus.

That’s help that couldn’t come at a better time, said Terry Megli, head of City Union Mission. He said demand for his organization’s services has already risen by 25%, particularly because many public agencies that provided services are closed.

“Really, the homeless have nowhere to go,” said Megli, who said City Union Mission has a desperate need for canned vegetables and coffee.

To donate to the Kansas City Regional COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, visit this site.

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