Community Foundation Holland/Zeeland

The COVID-19 Emergency Human Needs Fund

During the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, it was collaboration that allowed for a meaningful response to rapidly emerging needs. Many of our neighbors experienced sudden impacts resulting from the pandemic including food insecurity, increased mental health challenges, or concerns about housing and other essential needs.

The Grand Haven Area Community Foundation (GHACF), Greater Ottawa County United Way (GOCUW), Lakeshore Nonprofit Alliance (LNA) and The Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area (CFHZ) formed a coalition with a two-fold goal. They were joined in these efforts by local units of government, nonprofit agencies, and other community partners.

  • First, to come alongside local organizations as they responded to dramatic increases in service requests and adapted to new methods of service delivery.
  • Second, to create a way for the community to get involved with relief efforts while observing new social distancing guidelines.

The first goal was supported by the creation of the Emergency Human Needs Fund (EHNF), which was designed to be the short-term rapid response fund helping keep people fed, housed and healthy for the first six to eight week “free fall” of impacts caused by COVID-19. CFHZ, GHACF, and GOCUW seeded the fund with an initial investment, and generous donations from local individuals, families, and businesses allowed the fund to distribute almost $912,000 to 56 partner organizations located throughout Ottawa County.

“The pandemic increased demand for addiction services while in many cases making it dangerous to provide treatment in groups or one-on-one clinical sessions. Funding from the Emergency Human Needs Fund allowed OAR to provide additional and critical services to those suffering from addiction through an enhanced Telehealth platform, while assuring the safety of OAR clients and staff.”

David Teater, Executive Director of OAR

 "The level of uncertainty this pandemic created, paired with layoffs and mandatory stay-at-home orders resulted in an escalation of violence and abuse for many of the families in our community whose homes are not a safe-haven. We continue to witness an increase in the severity of cases and in the number of requests we receive for emergency safe shelter. Funds received from the Emergency Human Needs Fund literally saved lives and for that, we are eternally grateful."

Beth Larsen, Executive Director of Resilience: Advocates for Ending Violence

“It was critical for us to ensure that all of the people who call Ottawa County home received access to the resources they needed. Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect and the Emergency Human Needs Fund reflected the value that Ottawa County has for all its residents regardless of their immigration status.”

Reyna Masko, spokesperson for the St. John’s Episcopal Church Immigrant Relief Fund

Grants made from the EHNF


  • $125,000 Good Samaritan Ministries
  • $65,000 The Salvation Army (Grand Haven)       
  • $65,000 Community Action House
  • $45,000 Mosaic Counseling
  • $47,500 Love in Action of the Tri Cities
  • $40,000 The Salvation Army (Holland)
  • $40,000 Resilience: Advocates for Ending Violence
  • $32,500 Love Inc of Hudsonville
  • $32,500 Love Inc of Allendale
  • $30,000 Coopersville Cares
  • $27,500 Harvest Stand Ministries
  • $25,000 OAR - Ottagan Addictions Recovery
  • $25,000 Holland Rescue Mission
  • $25,000 St. John’s Episcopal Church
  • $22,500 Bethany Christian Services
  • $20,000 West Michigan Hispanic Center
  • $20,000 Kids Food Basket (Holland)
  • $20,000 Arbor Circle
  • $15,660 Midtown Counseling
  • $15,000 Four Pointes Center for Successful Aging
  • $15,000 The People Center
  • $13,239.50 Call 211
  • $12,500 Beacon of Hope 
  • $10,000 Evergreen Commons Day Center
  • $10,000 Hand2Hand
  • $10,000 LifeCircles PACE
  • $10,000 Lighthouse Immigrant Advocates
  • $10,000 Senior Resources of West Michigan
  • $10,000 West Michigan Open Source Medical Supplies Group
  • $8,500 Children’s Advocacy Center
  • $8,500 Momentum Center
  • $7,500 Migrant Resource Council
  • $5,000 Latin Americans United for Progress
  • $5,000 St Francis de Sales Church
  • $5,000 Resthaven
  • $3,500 Muskegon YMCA (Veggie Van –AgeWell Services Ottawa County Senior Curbside Meal Distribution)
  • $3,000 Holland Free Health Clinic
  • $2,700 City on a Hill
  • $2,500 ATLAS Ministries
  • $2,500 Benjamin’s Hope
  • $2,500 Lakeshore Pregnancy Center
  • $2,500 MOKA
  • $2,500 My House Ministries
  • $2,500 ODC Network
  • $2,000 Extended Grace
  • $1,500 Barnabas Ministries
  • $1,500 Bridge Youth Center - Zeeland
  • $1,500 Ottawa Community Schools Network – Coopersville
  • $1,500 Wedgewood Christian Services
  • $1,000 Emmanuel Hospice
  • $1,000 Family Life Center
  • $1,000 Harbor Hospice Foundation
  • $1,000 Ripple Effect

“The incredible support from the community coalition equipped Good Samaritan Ministries to provide direct financial assistance and supportive services for families at risk of losing housing. Funds from the Emergency Human Needs Fund allowed Good Samaritan Ministries to continue responding proactively to the demand created by COVID-19, keeping our vulnerable households housed.”

Drew Peirce, Executive Director of Good Samaritan Ministries

Share this page

85 East 8th Street, Suite 110, Holland, MI 49423   (616) 396-6590   Email us