For Immediate Release…

United Way Announces Second Round of COVID-19 Community Response Funding

(Fort Smith, AR- April 29, 2020)- United Way of Fort Smith Area has now opened Phase 2 of the COVID-19 Community Response Fund Grants. Deadline to apply for this round is Monday, May 4th. They are offering ten $2,500 micro-grants to area non-profits and faith based organizations that are working with individuals and families combating food insecurity such as feeding sites, meals on wheels programs, non-perishable backpacks, etc., in order to meet the food needs locally. United Way recently received the Blue and You Foundation Grant to help fund the fight against hunger during this unique and unprecedented time. United Way appreciates all the work area agencies and organizations are doing during this time to provide food to the hungry in our area. Volunteer members of an advisory committee will work with United Way to quickly assess the needs and make rapid funding decisions to ensure a thorough and efficient process. Even though an organization received a grant in the first round of funding, the organization is still eligible to apply for this round. “On behalf of the United Way Board and Staff we would like to give a heartfelt thank you to Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield and the Blue and You Foundation. From the generosity of this grant, our COVID-19 response fund committee will be able to provide a direct impact for individuals and families through the agencies that receive these funds,” states Eddie Lee Herndon, President and CEO of United Way of Fort Smith Area.

During Phase 1 of the COVID-19 Community Response Fund Grants, United Way of Fort Smith Area awarded seven grants, totaling $7,000, to local non-profit organizations. These micro-grants (up to $1000) were for organizations responding to the immediate needs of vulnerable populations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The following agencies received funding in the first round of grant process:

Antioch Consolidated Association for Youth and Family
Community Rescue Mission
Crawford County Senior Citizens Center
Donald W. Reynolds Cancer Support House
Girls Inc.
River Valley Regional Food Bank
Sebastian Retired Citizens Association

In an effort to address the health and economic impact on our neighbors, United Way convened a group of philanthropic and business partners to form a COVID-19 Community Response Fund, which will rapidly deploy resources to local agencies and organizations, getting dollars to where they are needed most. The COVID-19 Community Response Fund will assist agencies and organizations in providing individuals and families who have been impacted by this pandemic, the assistance needed to stay in their homes and keep food on the table. There are several ways you can donate to this fund, you can text “response” to 91999, go online to or by mailing a check to United Way of Fort Smith Area at 120 North 13th St., Fort Smith, AR 72901.

Application for Funding