When Colorado Gives Foundation (formerly Community First Foundation) started the new decade in 2020, we were excited for everything we had planned to make good happen in Jefferson County. When the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the SARSCoV-2 outbreak a global pandemic on March 11, 2020, the impact was felt around the world and more personally, here at home. With remarkable speed and efficiency, we took action by responding to urgent needs like cash assistance to keep nonprofit lights on and doors open, personal protective equipment, and food and housing support.
As the pandemic evolved, so did our response. Isolated families and individuals struggled with remote learning and work. Childcare was difficult to find, making it difficult to work. Domestic violence and substance abuse surged to new levels. As the community foundation serving Jefferson County, we listened and responded, providing remote learning assistance, creating childcare resource tools, supporting prevention and intervention for substance use/abuse and domestic violence prevention, and investing in vaccine access and equity. Nobody imagined the lingering impacts of the pandemic continuing as long as they did.
Our initial goal? Provide immediate and emergency relief for Jeffco residents experiencing impacts from the pandemic. Now, three years later we look back. Our lives and communities may be forever changed, but our deep commitment and connection to our community remains the same.