United Way fund grants $88K for COVID relief

MORGANTOWN -- The United Way of Monongalia and Preston Counties awarded several grants through its COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund to assist agencies, organizations and programs over the past few months with issues, such as food insecurity, unsheltered homeless, mask shortages and more. More than $88,000 has been awarded and expensed so far for immediate needs in the wake of the pandemic.

Grants from the fund were awarded to: Bartlett Housing Solutions, Pantry Plus More, The Community Kitchen, Food for Preston, Milan Puskar Health Right, MAYSP, The Native American Community Center, Covenant Evangelical Methodist Church (Food Pantry), The Salvation Army, A Moment of Magic, WV211, TeleHealth Access for Seniors, Libera, and Catholic Charities (Monongalia and Preston counties).

Funds supported the following initiatives as well: Food for local food pantries, bus passes to COVID testing sites, housing for homeless individuals at the Motel 6, and masks for community members and partner agencies.

Several businesses, foundations, individuals and corporations made gifts to the fund, which was first established shortly after the pandemic began. Significant gifts to the fund were made by Huntington National Bank, BB&T/Truist, WesBanco, DTE Foundation, Bernard McDonough Foundation and Dominion Energy.

“We’re so grateful for those who stepped in at this time to give monetary gifts to support our community,” said Brandi Helms, CEO of the local United Way. “The pandemic created a tremendous need in our community for food, masks, shelter, childcare, financial assistance and more. This response and recovery fund was created specifically to address those issues, and we’re so happy to be able to do just that.”