With small businesses across the country struggling with closures and layoffs amid the coronavirus pandemic, some have been relying on GoFundMe to make ends meet.
In response to the ongoing pandemic and its devastating effects on the economy, the fundraising platform launched a Small Business Relief Initiative, a place for people and organizations to give any financial assistance they can.
The initiative's Small Business Relief Fund has so far raised more than $2.7 million dollars to help thousands of qualifying businesses by issuing $500 matching grants to independently owned businesses that raise at least $500 on GoFundMe pages of their own.
But with so many people and organizations opening their wallets, the amount of money raised has exceeded those who've asked for help through GoFundMe, leaving the company with cash available to disperse to businesses who need help, GoFundMe says.
Any business that starts a GoFundMe and raises at least $500 can be considered to receive a matching grant, so long as they use the funds to either help care for employees, or pay ongoing business expenses.
That's not the only COVID-related fund; there's also a coronavirus branch within Causes, donations to which are collected and distributed by GoFundMe.org, GoFundMe's charitable and nonprofit arm.
That COVID-19 Relief Fund received a $50,000 grant from the New York Life Foundation on Wednesday, which will help those facing immediate need due to the pandemic.
"This grant will help us reach those with urgent needs brought on by the pandemic including PPE for frontline workers, mental health resources, or helping educators and students navigate remote learning," Heather Nesle, president of New York Life Foundation, said in a statement.
Nesle also noted that New York Life's new partnership with GoFundMe will help connect even more families with the Brave of Heart Fund, which it launched in April with Cigna to provide financial support to families of healthcare workers and volunteers who died of COVID through charitable relief grants.
"Every day we hear the heartbreaking stories of people who have been impact in some way by the COVID-19 pandemic," Yoshi Inoue, executive director of GoFundMe.org, said in a statement. "Through the generosity of individuals and partners like the New York Life Foundation, the COVID-10 Relief Cause is able to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those who need urgent help and also support the organizations working tirelessly on their behalf."
According to Brave of Heart's website, the fund has so far helped more than 270 families and granted more than $6 million, with New York Life matching up to $25 million in donations.
For more information on The COVID-19 Relief Cause, head here, and for more information on how to earn your business a $500 grant, click here.
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