The Create Foundation and United Way of Northeast Mississippi establish the COVID-19 Support Fund

March 19th, 2020     Local Business & Economy

The CREATE Foundation and United Way of Northeast Mississippi have established the COVID-19 Support Fund, a resource to relieve the burden on working families and individuals affected by the COVID-19 public health emergency.

With public events, schools and workplaces shuttering as the pandemic unfolds, many workers will experience unprecedented financial hardship. The problem is especially acute for individuals in the hospitality, food service and retail industries and other hourly workers who often live paycheck-to-paycheck with no clear options for recouping lost wages.

CREATE and United Way will mobilize their broad networks of nonprofit agencies throughout Northeast Mississippi to provide a flexible source of assistance to help families and individuals weather the COVID-19 crisis. These agencies have a proven track record of assisting families and individuals with their needs.

“Grants from the COVID-19 Support Fund will be made to nonprofit organizations, who will in turn provide the direct assistance to the families and individuals impacted by the COVID-19 crisis on a case-by-case basis,” said Melinda Tidwell, president of United Way of Northeast Mississippi. “These organizations already have the procedures in place to provide assistance, but they will quickly run out of funds as more people are without work. That’s why this fund is so important, to provide that extra support during an unusual time for many people.”

CREATE Foundation is making a challenge grant of $50,000 to match contributions made to the fund. “The COVID-19 pandemic is a new situation for all of us, but we do have some experience in helping our community through crisis situations,” said Mike Clayborne, president of CREATE. “We have lived through weather events in recent years that have left people without homes, jobs or the things they need on a daily basis, and the community has stepped in to help. CREATE is proud to invest the first $50,000, and we know we can count on the community to pitch in to assist those who will suffer without our help.”

Individuals interested in donating to the COVID-19 Support Fund can do so at They can also call 662-841-9133 to make a donation over the phone or mail a check to United Way at PO Box 334, Tupelo, MS 38802 or CREATE Foundation at PO Box 1053, Tupelo, MS 38802. Donors can also choose to designate their gift to the benefit of a specific county.

For general questions about the COVID-19 Support Fund, please contact United Way of Northeast Mississippi at 662-841-9133 or the CREATE Foundation at 662-844-8989.

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