Inspiring Stories of Giving Back

Even among the current state of uncertainty, there are inspirational people who are making a difference. Community members raised money for the Winona Community Foundation COVID-19 Relief Fund.

Nice Minnesota, a Winona-based brand celebrating all things Minnesota through apparel and gifts, sold over 200 lawn signs and raised $1,300 for the Winona Community Foundation COVID-19 Relief Fund. Yard signs were printed locally at Fastenal and delivered to six states including Minnesota, Wisconsin, Ohio, Maryland, Illinois and Connecticut. These signs, printed with “Kindness Changes Everything – Pass it On,” were designed to inspire positivity during the coronavirus pandemic.

Winona community member Joe Montgomery ran 100 miles in April and raised $1,500 for those impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The money was used to purchase gift cards at local Winona businesses to give away to people in need through Volunteer Services. This project was a joint effort between the Winona Community Foundation, Volunteer Services and Joe Montgomery.

The Winona Community Foundation Board of Directors established the COVID-19 Relief Fund to address a growing need for emergency funds and assistance. While the Winona Community Foundation does not provide direct program services, it partners with direct program providers to provide financial resources to individuals in an emergency.

The longer it takes for our community to emerge from this pandemic, the more individuals and families will experience financial hardship. For many, this will be the first time they need to ask for help. If you or someone you know is experiencing a financial hardship, encourage them to connect with any of the COVID-19 Relief Fund partner agencies for assistance.

Partners with access to the COVID-19 Relief Fund include: Family and Children’s Center of Winona, Hiawatha Valley Mental Health, Home and Community Options and Project FINE. Long-established partners include the Advocacy Center of Winona, Bluff Country Family Services in Hokah, Catholic Charities of Southern Minnesota (prescription assistance only), Hometown Resources in St. Charles, St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Wabasha, Semcac in Winona, Houston and Fillmore Counties, and Winona Volunteer Services.

The Winona Community Foundation is not taking any fees from contributions to this fund. All dollars will go directly to serving individuals and families. After we emerge from the pandemic if any funds remain they will be distributed to nonprofit organizations working to reestablish operations post pandemic. The Winona Community Foundation will waive all fees, and no dollars will remain in the Winona Community Foundation. If you want to contribute to this fund please donate today!

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