Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation releases COVID-19 grantee needs assessment revealing LA nonprofits require more flexibility during pandemic

May 20th, 2020

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation (LADF) released a COVID-19 Grantee Needs Assessment today revealing Los Angeles nonprofits require increased flexibility during the current pandemic. LADF is calling on all major grantmaking organizations in Los Angeles to join them in offering nonprofit partners clear and consistent communication, creative collaboration, basic needs support that includes technology, grant requirements adjustments, and a platform to share best practices. The complete COVID-19 Grantee Needs Assessment can be found at Dodgers.com/Grants

“To remain successful, nonprofits need philanthropic funders to create crisis response funds to support their drastically shifting work during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Nichol Whiteman, LADF Chief Executive Officer. “As experienced with the organizations we directly fund, these local nonprofits are implementing new online programming and are expanding services to address basic needs like food and hygiene assistance for a much larger demographic.”

LADF distributed a brief survey to 47 of its 2019 and 2020 grantees. Thirty (30) organizations completed the survey, a response rate of 64%. The questionnaire focused on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on nonprofit programming, operations, and what assistance from funders would be most helpful during the crisis.  

“Addressing how this pandemic has decimated our community’s social safety net means more than just delivering goods and services,” said Chaitali Gala Mehta, LADF Chief Operating Officer. “We knew we must first listen to the organizations on the frontlines and once informed, provide the support so that we can continue to serve more and serve more effectively.”

So far in 2020, LADF has awarded 68% of grants to organizations addressing homelessness and food insecurity, 20% to organizations improving education outcomes for youth, and 12% to improve access to health care for Angelenos. These have been long standing issues in Los Angeles that have only been exacerbated by the pandemic. Grants have been provided to organizations such as the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, My Friend’s Place, the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles, and Brotherhood Crusade. 

“We are only as strong as those that stand beside us. To have the Dodgers Foundation at our side during such scary times really means that we have our community champions at our side,” said Heather Carmichael, Executive Director for My Friend’s Place. “It has really bolstered our confidence, and also they have made sure we have the resources to feed the hungry bellies that are coming to our doors and that we can be here for the duration of this pandemic.”

Barriers to online participation and virtual programming were also major themes in the assessment with 68% of respondents citing lack of access to the internet and devices for their families. As an immediate response to communities most impacted, LADF has awarded $10,000 to Brotherhood Crusade to provide internet access and technology hardware for 5,000 low income families in South and East Los Angeles.

Charisse Bremond Weaver, Brotherhood Crusade President and CEO said, "We are grateful to the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation for this grant which will support our continued and ongoing outreach during this pandemic to the neediest, most at-risk members of our community. This donation will allow us to provide technology for our youth with computers, hotspots and headsets which will continue to level the playing field and help our youth succeed not just today, but tomorrow and beyond.”

For more information on relief efforts, educational programs and community resources, please visit Dodgers.com/Relief or LosDodgers.com/Ayuda.

**About the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation: **

The Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation is bigger than baseball with ambitions to be the city’s premier charity. We want to impact Los Angeles’ most pressing problems: improving access to education, health care, affordable housing, youth programs and social justice. Since 1995, we have invested more than $30 million in programs and grants to nonprofits, and fundraising has increased by 1,000% since 2012. That growth has enabled us to do more.