Community Impact


Fund Total Funding DistributedFund Balance
$7.4 M$5.46 M$2.05 M


As the public health response to COVID-19 in Pierce County escalated on March 13, 2020, United Way of Pierce County and Greater Tacoma Community Foundation partnered for an aligned philanthropic response to emerging community needs. Together, they launched the PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED fund, seeded with $750,000 from GTCF. GTCF committed another $1 million in matching dollars for regional funders joining in the effort. Since the launch, numerous regional funders contributed to the fund, and have exceeded the matching amount.  The chart above will be updated weekly to reflect the latest information about the fund balance. 

The PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED fund supports organizations providing services to address urgent needs and the disruption of basic human services to Pierce County’s most vulnerable populations due to COVID-19 and the necessary public health measures to address it 

PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED partners are committed to delivering rapid funding to organizations in a way that supports their continued services to vulnerable populations with the fewest barriers possible.

With that in mind, this is not a typical grant application process. This process is designed to surface urgent and emerging needs in the community related to COVID-19 disruptions, elevate these funding needs to a broad networks of funders and GTCF fundholders, and rapidly move PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED funds into the community for those applicants that meet the criteria.

Requests will be accepted from organizations and entities with services based in Pierce County including tribal governments, local governments, school districts, 501c3 nonprofit organizations, intermediaries, and fiscally sponsored projects or collaborations. Vulnerable populations include, but are not limited to, people with food insecurity, people experiencing homelessness, communities of color, frontline workers, immigrants, people experiencing domestic violence, people needing behavioral health supports, people with disabilities, remote or isolated persons or families, and senior citizens.

When submitting a request to PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED, please be aware of the following:
1. Requests may not be funded.
2. Organizations can update their requests as needs change or surface so that funders can be as responsive as possible.
3. Funding requests will be shared with GTCF fundholders and funding partners. The purpose of doing so is to help surface needs so that area funders can directly support unfunded applications.



Funding Timeline

PhaseGoalFunding Awarded
Phase 1: Urgent Response
March 30 - April 3, 2020
$1M funding support of food access, shelter, and childcare for first responders, medical providers, and essential workers. Phase 1 Funding Recipients
Phase 2: Rapid Response
April 4 – 30, 2020

Rolling Requests
$2M funding in support of urgent and emerging needs identified through online requests and surfaced through PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Community Response Committee.Phase 2 Funding Recipients
Phase 3:
May – December 2020
(Rapid Response and Emerging Needs)

See full Phase 3 timeline
Funding in support of rapid response emerging needs identified through online requests and surfaced through PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Community Response Committee will continue through the end of 2020.Phase 3 Funding Recipients
Phase 4: Rebuilding
Jan 2021
Phase 4: Rebuilding
Jan 2021
As this situation continues to develop, PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED will post focus areas for any additional funding.



  • Brad Cheney, Ben B. Cheney Foundation (Co-Chair)
  • Dona Ponepinto, United Way of Pierce County (Co-Chair)
  • Lauren Fulton, OnePierce Community Resiliency Fund
  • Cassandra Mitchell, KeyBank
  • Georgia Lomax, Pierce County Library System
  • Holly Bamford Hunt, Bamford Family Foundation
  • Janece Levien, Greater Tacoma Community Foundation
  • Jeff Woodworth, Woodworth Family Foundation
  • Lois Bernstein, MultiCare
  • Richard Woo, retired CEO, The Russell Family Foundation
  • Seth Kirby, Greater Tacoma Community Foundation
  • Todd Silver, Todd & Teresa Silver Funds
  • Tyler Zemanek, Windows of Hope Foundation


Additional Information



PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Community Response Committee

COVID-19 Resources





    Tech Access And Connectivity Among COVID-19 Needs Supported By $105K From PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED (October 15, 2020)

    ‘Homeless providers see urgent need for safe parking. They’re asking churches for help’ (Tacoma News Tribune October 3, 2020)

    $150K In PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Funding Goes To Organizations Offering Child And Family Supports Under Persistent COVID-19 Conditions (October 1, 2020)

    $100K in PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Funding Goes To Organizations Connecting Community Under COVID-19 Conditions (September 17, 2020)

    Foster Youth, Youth With Disabilities, And Refugees Among Communities Supported Under COVID-19 Conditions Through $204K in PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Funding (September 10, 2020)

    $237K Goes To Meet Persistent Child And Youth Needs Under COVID-19 Conditions (August 20, 2020)

    Blackbaud Security Incident Notice (August 6, 2020)

    $95,000 Goes To Meet Pierce County Needs Under Persistent COVID-19 Conditions  (August 6, 2020)

    $508K In PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Funding Goes To Rapid Response And Emerging Needs Under COVID-19 Conditions (July 23, 2020)

    $155,000 In PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Funding Goes To Emerging Technology Needs Under COVID-19 Conditions (July 2, 2020)

    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Distributes $250K To Whole Child Summer Day Camps For Children Of Essential Workers (June 25, 2020)

    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Distributes $250K to Local Organizations Addressing Emerging Needs Related to COVID-19 (June 8, 2020)

    GTCF Stands With The Black community (June 5, 2020)

    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Distributes $125K to 13 Pierce County Organizations Meeting Needs During COVID-19 (May 21, 2020)

    Bright side to COVID-19 pandemic? Mental health care easier to access in Pierce County (Tacoma News Tribune May 7, 2020) 

    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Distributes $545K To Support Vulnerable Populations During COVID-19   (April 30, 2020) 

    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Delivers $960K to Organizations Supporting Vulnerable Populations During COVID-19 (April 23, 2020)

    Regional Funders Distribute $360K To Support Vulnerable Populations Across Pierce County During COVID-19 (April 16, 2020)

    Pierce County partnership amasses $5.1M to help those in need during the COVID-19 crisis (Tacoma News Tribune April 15, 2020)

    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Distributes Second Round of COVID-19 Rapid Response Funding (April 10, 2020)

    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Distributes $1M To Organizations Meeting Urgent COVID-19 Needs (April 2, 2020)

    Tacoma TV CityLine with Dona Ponepinto and Kathi Littmann (April 2, 2020)

    Regional Funders Unite To Give $4M For Pierce County During COVID-19 (March 26, 2020)

    United Way and GTCF Launch COVID-19 Emergency Fund (South Sound Business March 25, 2020)

    Here’s How You Can Help Pierce County Service Providers Respond to Coronavirus (Tacoma News Tribune March 24, 2020)