$95,000 Goes To Meet Pierce County Needs Under Persistent COVID-19 Conditions 


 PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED is an aligned philanthropic response to COVID-19 in Pierce County   

Released 8/6/20 4:30pm
Media Inquiries Contact:
Megan Sukys, 253.345.4173
VP Communications, GTCF    


The PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Fund announced its latest round of funding with $95,000 going to 3 local organizations addressing persistent needs under COVID-19 conditions. This brings the total funding through PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED to $4.2 million.    

Further requests for funding are now being accepted. Details are available at GTCF’s website.   

The following organizations received fund support:   



    Jeff WoodworthPresidentWoodworth Capital, Inc, is a member of the PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED funding committee, COVID-19 has amplified the need of all of the organizations we fund. It isn’t going away, so the amplified need isn’t either. Obliviously, most organizations are having to adapt for many reasons, whether its PPE issues, lack of available volunteers, inability to hold in-person fundraisers, or just reinventing themselves to help provide for the need any way they can.”  


    Rick Willis, Senior Vice President of Community Engagement, The Arthritis Foundation, “COVID-19 has proven to be an additional threat for people already living with autoimmune and chronic diseases such as arthritis. Their needs cannot be overlooked. The PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED funding allows the Arthritis Foundation to expand our existing outreach programs into online resources, virtual family camps and virtual patient education programs, providing critical support to individuals and families living with arthritis.”  

    Monique BrownUS Arm (Ret.), Founder and Executive Directory, FOB Hope, Many of the Veterans we serve are low incomeThey work in areas that have been affected tremendously by COVID. Working in food service, janitorial service, and other low wage jobs is a challenge during COVID because these Veterans are not considered “essential workers” and are being laid off or furloughed from their positions. The funds provided by PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED will be utilized to pay past due rent and mortgages for Veterans and their families. We can now help people remain housed and allow them to get the necessary basic items to survive during this COVID pandemic.  

    Trudy SorensenSenior District Director and Mouammar Abouagila, Resettlement Director, Lutheran Community Services Northwest, Isolation for seniors has become much more critical during the pandemic. Before COVID, we had many volunteers who would check in with hundreds of seniors in Pierce County to make sure their needs were being met. The pandemic impact continues to increase needs for those who lost their jobs.  

    In Pierce County we have 193 resettled refugees and we serve most of them under an extended case management program. We will be purchasing a van so we can deliver food and other essential needs to seniors and refugees right now. The ability to safely deliver food will help meet people’s basic needs. PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED support will help us keep staff on board who check in with seniors and refugees. Staff are calling clients to check in on them. If staff finds gaps in critical items or care, we now have the resources to better meet those needs.” 


    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED funding for vulnerable populations under COVID-19 conditions is made possible through generous contributions from 313 individual donors and 54 philanthropic funding partners. So far, contributions to PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED total a combined $7.4 million. 


    The OnePierce Community Resilience Fund is one of the PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED funders. OnePierce believes that by building a resource for change, they can create opportunities to implement sustainable innovations in our community. Their support will address the consistent needs surfacing in our community under the conditions of COVID-19.   

    Lauren FultonDirector, OnePierce Community Resiliency Fund – the funding arm of Elevate Health, “It is essential that we continue to fund resources designed to support Pierce County residents during the COVID19 outbreak. As the outbreak continues, we are seeing growing challenges for the people in our community from job losses to food access issues, housing concerns to increases in behavioral health needs. The PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Fund is dedicated to ensuring people receive the support they need right now. As a new investor in whole-person health across Pierce County, OnePierce is excited to partner with PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED. We share a mutual goal to support and improve the health of our community’s most vulnerable populations by removing barriers to fundamental needs like housing, food, transportation, education, and health care access.” 

    Another funder is the Bates Family Foundation. Rex Bates, Trustee, Bates Family Foundation“Our family has been part of the Tacoma community for almost 25 years. When members of the community are hurting, and we can help, we want to do what we can.  That is what being a neighbor means!” 



    PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED funding 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.    

    The members of the funding committee include: Co-Chair Dona Ponepinto – United Way of Pierce County, Co-Chair Brad Cheney – Ben B. Cheney Foundation, Alisha Fehrenbacher – Elevate Health & One Pierce, 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, Nick Russell – The Russell Family Foundation, 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   

    Organizations and entities with services based in Pierce County can now submit requests. Information about the funding opportunity can be found at the PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED Emergency Response Fund web page.    


    The PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED fund was launched as the public health response to COVID-19 in Pierce County escalated on Friday, March 13, 2020. The purpose of the fund is to support organizations in Pierce County providing services that meet urgent health and basic human needs due to COVID-19.    

    United Way of Pierce County and Greater Tacoma Community Foundation partnered to create the aligned philanthropic response. GTCF seeded the fund with $1,750,000.    

    Individual donors can make a difference for their communities during COVID-19 by contributing in any way they can. The aligned philanthropies encourage individual donors to give directly to the causes and organizations that matter to them.    

    To support funding for organizations directly serving vulnerable populations during COVID-19, donors are encouraged to donate to PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED fund.   







    Ballmer Group 

    Bates Family Foundation 

    Beardsley Family Foundation 


    Ben B. Cheney Foundation 

    Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation 

    Campbell Family Foundation 

    Campbell/Loan Family Charitable Fund 

    CHI Franciscan 

    Columbia Bank 

    Corry & Donna J. McFarland Foundation 

    Elevate Health & OnePierce Community Resiliency Fund 

    Elliott Family Foundation 

    Foundation for Tacoma Students 


    JP Morgan Chase 

    Laird Norton Family Foundation 

    Laird Norton Wealth Management 

    Laird Norton Trust Company 

    LT Murray Family Foundation 


    Korum for Kids Foundation 

    Laird Norton Foundation 

    Medina Foundation 

    MJ Murdock Trust 


    Names Family Foundation 

    Oscar T and Olivann Hokold Foundation 

    Pacific Source 

    Perigee Fund 

    Premera Blue Cross 

    Propel Insurance 

    Puget Sound Energy Foundation 

    Rotary 8  

    Roy & Patricia Disney Foundation 

    Ruth Foundation 

    Satterberg Foundation 

    South Sound 100 Women 

    Stewardship Foundation 

    Stolte Family Foundation 

    The Baker Foundation 

    The Bamford Foundation 

    The Russell Family Foundation 

    Todd & Teresa Silver 

    Tom and Meg Names Family Foundation 

    Umpqua Bank 

    United Way of Pierce County 

    Wells Fargo 

    Whisper Foundation 

    Woodworth Family Foundation  


    All contributors to PIERCE COUNTY CONNECTED are recognized at United Way of Pierce County’s website. Click here to see the full list.