Applications Open for COVID-19 RESPONSE: Emergency Relief Fund

Jackson County United Way has released application details for COVID-19 assistance.  Last month, UW launched a COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund to support immediate economic stability and basic needs throughout Jackson County to date they raised just under $19,000.

The purpose of the fund is to assist non-profit organizations helping individuals and families with immediate COVID-19 related financial needs not covered by government programs or other traditional relief sources.  Instead, the fund will provide financial assistance to non-profits organizations who are eligible.  To be eligible the organization must:

  • Be recognized by the IRS as a non-profit under IRS code 501(c)3.
  • Serve residents in Jackson County.
  • Have an emergent organizational need or have process to provide direct individual assistance for emergent needs.  If direct individual assistance is provided, the client will be asked to complete a Charity Tracker Release of Information and the organization complete an assistance record in the Charity Tracker system. 

Examples of appropriate emergency funding include, but are not limited to:

  • Increased organization costs or need in order to serve clients in this potential crisis
  • Client emergency needs such as: rent/mortgage assistance, utilities, food, household supplies, child care for essential employees, etc.

In considering how United Way needed to distribute these funds, Tonja Couch, Executive Director shared, “We were thoughtful in who to include at the table.  We have a wide variety of partners in the community who quickly see and understand unmet needs.  We assembled this COVID-19 Fund Distribution Committee to bring their expertise and knowledge to ensure we can save safety net service in our community to help those who are working hard and not making ends meet- as well as plan for long term recovery in the midst of this disaster.”

The COVID-19 Fund Distribution Committee includes seventeen non-profit, faith-based, governmental and community leaders who are experienced in understanding emerging unmet needs and grant management. Funding decisions will be based on community needs, funds remaining and other pending requests. All requests will be prioritized and funded based upon up-to-date community needs assessments.  The requests will be reviewed and disbursements made twice a month after approval by a committee selected and approved by the Jackson County United Way Board. 

One of these partners includes, Dan Davis, President of the Community Foundation of Jackson County.  “The Community Foundation of Jackson County is pleased to collaborate with our community partners including Jackson County United Way in this response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” President & CEO Dan Davis said. “United Way and the Foundation have a strong history of working together to improve our community and to help it work through disasters and challenges such as the flooding in June 2008 and now the effects and impacts of COVID-19.”

Those organizations wanting to apply can request funds through a simple application process available at  United Way is partnering with nonprofits to make sure there is child care, food, and housing & utility assistance in place- while keeping an eye on future unmet and emerging needs. We are focused on ensuring support for those families that have been hardest hit.

Payments will not be made directly to individuals or families requesting financial assistance.  United Way has convened weekly conference calls over the last month to discuss emerging and unmet needs with over 40 non-profit, faith-based, governmental and community leaders.  Through these conversations multiple needs have been discovered specifically meals on Saturday and Sunday; essential child care supports; senior citizens’ grocery delivery; homelessness housing support; and rental assistance.  In order to have one point of contact for multiple needs United Way has created a COVID-19 Assistance Referral Form to connect clients to needs to a variety of services.  The form can be completed online at

Every $100 donated will be matched DOLLAR for DOLLAR to the COVID-19 Response Emergency Relief Fund by the Indiana United Ways UNIN20 Grant up to $25,000. 100% of what is raised will be directly invested back into Jackson County’s most pressing needs in regards to this pandemic. Your generous contribution supports Jackson County’s human service needs during economic distress associated with COVID-19.  Donations can be made securely at,  by calling 812-522-5450 ext. 7, or by mailing a check (Memo: Emergency Relief) to P.O. Box 94, Seymour IN 47274.

For more information on the fund and how to apply visit the website