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Rapid Response Emergency Grant

Grants to Pennsylvania Nonprofits to Help Vulnerable
Populations During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Partnership for Better Health

Deadline Date:



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Grants of up to $25,000 to Pennsylvania nonprofit organizations in eligible areas to address the effects of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Focus areas include health, basic needs, assisting homeless residents and unemployed residents, and protecting emergency responders. All services and resource distribution must benefit local community members who live in Central and Western Cumberland County, Perry County, Northern Adams County, and the Greater Shippensburg Area.

The Partnership for Better Health provides funding for grants and initiatives that improve individual health status and community health capacity through the use of evidence-based strategies and best practices. In March of 2020, the World Health Organization announced a global pandemic and the first cases of novel coronavirus in Pennsylvania quickly began to multiply. Recognizing the unprecedented health emergency facing local communities, the Partnership for Better Health is making Rapid Response Emergency Grants available to local nonprofit organizations, to assist them in responding to the threat of COVID-19.

Funding priorities for Emergency Grants include: meeting basic health and human needs, protecting emergency responders, supporting homeless residents, and financially assisting the newly unemployed. 

  • Basic Health & Human Needs: Grants are available to assist health and human service organizations in responding to the emergency needs of vulnerable community members by ensuring that they continue to have access to nutritious food, healthcare and related basic needs. Funds may also be used to offer increased mental health, substance use disorder and social-emotional services, and to ensure clean, protected or virtual settings for the delivery of these services. 
  • Emergency Responders: Grants are available to assist nonprofit emergency responders with the purchase of essential health supplies, protective gear and equipment to keep them safe and highly effective as they address the COVID-19 crisis. 
  • Homeless Residents: Grants will help housing providers and shelters respond to increased demand for emergency housing services and outreach, social distancing practices and safe quarantine environments. 
  • Newly Unemployed & Rental Assistance: Grants will support agencies in assisting workers who have been laid off, lost income and/or become newly unemployed as a result of COVID-19. These grants will position nonprofits to provide direct financial assistance to help residents meet immediate needs, such as rent. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 188885

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grants are expected to range between $2,000 and $25,000.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Organizations with significant experience serving vulnerable populations in the foundation’s geographic region of Central and Western Cumberland County, Perry County, Northern Adams County and Greater Shippensburg are invited to apply for grants of up to $25,000. Priority will be given to applicants that:
- Are nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations;
- Have a proven track record of success in providing emergency, health or human services to individuals in need;
- Have the ability to reach and serve large numbers of community members (40 to 100 or more people), and have the ability to serve high-risk populations including older adults, people with underlying health conditions, low-income residents and health care workers; and
- Document a compelling strategy to mobilize funds efficiently and fairly within 90 days, including a lean and effective screening process to equitably award financial assistance grants, if applicable.

Priority will be given to applicants that do not duplicate other funds that are available to your organization through mandated, tax-funded services that you already provide, or county, state and federal emergency COVID-19 aid bills.

Priority will be given to applicants that are existing or previous community partners or grant agencies of the Partnership for Better Health.

For ineligible expenses, see the Grant Eligibility tab on the URL for Full Text below.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis through May 29, 2020.


Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Grants Management System:

Funding questions may be directed to:
Carol Thornton
Director of Grants and Public Policy
717.960.9009 x7

Gail Witwer
Director of Health Promotion
717.960.9009 x8

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Pennsylvania: Central and Western Cumberland County, Perry County, Northern Adams County and Greater Shippensburg

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