As California responds to the coronavirus pandemic, United Ways of California announces the creation of the California United Ways COVID-19 Relief Fund to relieve hardship for vulnerable working families throughout the state, and to support the coordination of local community relief efforts.

“Governor Newsom and state and local officials throughout California are moving quickly to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Peter Manzo, President and CEO of United Ways of California. “California United Ways are doing their part to help working families experiencing the loss of income due to quarantine or shelter in place orders, sensitive families and children affected by closures of schools and child care centers, seniors who have limited ability to access food and medical prescriptions, and others affected by this crisis.”

This statewide fund is intended to ensure equity in the distribution of philanthropic resources across all of California. Funds raised will complement local funds sponsored by local United Ways and their partners to strengthen those impacted during this extraordinary crisis. Several local United Ways have already established region-specific funds as well, including San Diego, Los Angeles, Arrowhead, Inland Valleys and Inland Empire, Orange County, Santa Barbara, Bay Area, N orthern California, and Tulare).

Over one in three (37%) households in California struggle to meet the cost of a basic standard of living, according to United Ways of California’s Real Cost Measure study. Together, California United Ways will ensure funds raised during this critical time will be directed to help those who are the most vulnerable by the COVID-19 pandemic including those disproportionately impacted such as our homeless neighbors, low-income working families, individuals and students who are especially at risk of economic hardships and lack of access to healthcare and academic support.

Text “COVIDUW” to 41444 to donate and/or give online to help California’s most vulnerable residents during this public health and financial stability crisis: www.unitedwaysca.org/coviduw

United Ways of California improves the health, education and financial stability of low-income California families by coordinating the statewide community impact and advocacy work of California United Ways.