County Response

A community coalition comprised of the Greater Ottawa County United Way, The Grand Haven Area Community Foundation, Lakeshore Nonprofit Alliance, Community Spoke, and The Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area has been monitoring ongoing developments surrounding Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

As our community prepares for an uncertain next few weeks and months, we know the steps we can take to reduce infection and prevent spread: wash your hands often, avoid/reduce close contact with others, & clean/disinfect your home frequently.

There are vulnerable populations in our community who will need ongoing care and support, and as COVID-19 spreads these individuals may face increased barriers in accessing vital services. Nonprofit agencies in Ottawa County have committed to keeping people fed, housed, and healthy as best as they can. But these organizations face challenges as they balance their missions with the additional workload of managing the threat of COVID-19.

In addition to the increased need for services, COVID-19 is creating a gap in the volunteer workforce as older citizens, many of whom donate their time, are being advised to remain at home. New volunteers are needed to help fill that gap and avoid any interruptions in service provision.

Those who aren’t able to volunteer can also consider financial gifts, either directly to the nonprofit of their choice, or through community-wide funds housed at the Community Foundation for Holland/Zeeland, Grand Haven Area Community Foundation, or Greater Ottawa County United Way. Financial gifts help local agencies offset the unexpected costs due to COVID-19, including an increased service demand, logistical challenges, and cancellation of fundraising events.

To make volunteering and giving easy, our community coalition has created a website: careottawacounty.com. Here, you’ll be connected to a wide variety of opportunities for you to make an impact – volunteering, donating goods, or making a financial gift.

This is a time of great need, and the natural human impulse is to help our neighbors, so join us in helping in any way that you can.

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