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As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, we quickly realised this was a situation like none we had experienced. In addition to the impact on people, jobs and communities, the lockdown and rapid recession also impacted the ability of charity community organisations to deliver services and even survive.

The institutions who are there for us in time of need were themselves facing crisis.

The Charitable Foundation recognised the potential for the pandemic to impact the delivery of community services, and by April we commenced a range of relief initiatives.

Working with our charity partners we assessed the impact and assisted with risk management and business continuity advice and support, including reallocation of grants towards online delivery and revising timelines or existing projects.

We rapidly developed a partnership with Central Coast Local Health District, Hunter New England Health District and Everymind to create readily accessible resources with mental health support information. By May this resource had been distributed to more than 300 Charitable Foundation partners and other community organisations and reached 750,000 people on social media.

In May we announced funding support measures, including direct support and connections for already marginalised people who were further isolated by the pandemic, to be delivered by PCYC NSW and Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre. Our most significant measure was to suspend our usual operations and bring forward $600,000 in grant funding to support our existing partners through the crisis and deliver innovative solutions that will assist our communities to survive and rebuild. This funding will start working in the community from September 2020.

Sugar valley
Sugarvalley Neighbourhood Centre received a $7,000 to supply care packages through COVID.