Whatcom Community Foundation Resilience Fund Flood Resources Update

Submitted by the Whatcom Community Foundation

As of December 3, Whatcom Community Foundation through its Resilience Fund, and working with Whatcom Strong, has made 22 grants totaling $816,000 to 15 organizations working on the ground in the communities impacted by flood. The Resilience Fund is our community’s emergency bounce-back fund. It puts philanthropic (i.e. private) dollars to work providing emergency assistance, such as financial support, food or childcare, to our community’s most vulnerable neighbors as fast as possible in a crisis, whether a pandemic, a flood or other disaster. Every dollar raised here stays here and 100% of all donations made to the Resilience Fund are currently being granted for flood relief.

Whatcom Strong is one trusted resource for all information regarding Whatcom County flood relief. Their Online Resource can connect people to the help they need or can provide. You can sign up to volunteer where help is needed most and donate to help our neighbors.

Total costs associated with the floods are currently estimated at $50 million and may go higher. Right now, there simply is not enough money to give people everything they need to return to pre-flood conditions. Philanthropy, such as the Resilience Fund, is the fastest and most flexible money available in a crisis: it is private money for public good. Philanthropic dollars are critical to help stabilize people, and they are nowhere near enough to solve the long-term challenges associated with a disaster. Lasting solutions for housing, infrastructure and business recovery hinge on local, state and government relief and recovery funding.

Primary organizations that have received funding to date are: Sumas Advent Christian Church, Valley Church (Nooksack), Haven Church (Everson), First Reformed Church of Lynden, Ferndale Community Resource Center, Food banks in affected communities, Catholic Community Services, among others.

These funds are making it possible for these organizations to distribute:

  • Direct aid (checks and gift cards) for necessities like food, shelter, gas
  • Food, via area food banks
  • Storage and cleanup supplies, such as bins, work gloves, fans. “We are so grateful to those who have donated to the Resilience Fund and humbled to be a part of disbursing that funding. We’ve focused our efforts on families in the Nooksack area that had flood waters inside their homes. The need is overwhelming, but this support has been a boost to people, letting them know they are not alone – that people care,” said Kyle Hopkins, Lead Pastor, Valley Church in Everson. The Whatcom Community Foundation not only steps up when disaster strikes. Its day-to-day work is to connect people, ideas, and resources so that everyone in Whatcom County can thrive. The Foundation has been serving Whatcom County for 25 years and has invested nearly $52 million toward community health, happiness and prosperity since 1996.
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