Local solutions
in a global pandemic

Support needed for community-led responses to COVID-19

In light of COVID-19, many things are unclear, while other things are coming into sharp focus: the inequity of impacts on communities battling this pandemic, and the importance of local responses and solutions. There is urgent need for philanthropic funders to step up. Gaps in government and market funding mean that many of our most vulnerable communities are at the greatest risk with the least access to support. Funders must take the long view but act with urgency.

The crisis is acutely felt by local changemakers who are rapidly responding and adapting to unprecedented challenges and growing local need in their communities. The effects of this pandemic will be felt long after the crisis is over, and for some communities, the damage could be irreparable.

Community leaders are best positioned to address these challenges.
They just need the resources to do it.

We have spent the last two decades building deep, trust-based relationships with communities and changemakers, as well as networks of funders and partners. Now, we want to activate our unique position as a bridge builder to get financial support into community as fast as possible.

MakeWay is launching two rapid-response funds to quickly and flexibly drive capital directly into communities as they respond to immediate and long-term threats of COVID-19.

We invite you to join us in enabling community-led responses to this crisis.
Here’s how you can help.

Rapid Response Fund for Changemakers

Deploying resources to community-led initiatives responding to COVID-19.

MakeWay’s shared platform is home to over 60 environmental and social initiatives—embedded from coast to coast to coast—working on community-led solutions to pressing environmental and social challenges.

In the face of COVID-19, some are quickly adapting daily activities to provide immediate support to communities in crisis—creating innovative ways to connect people to essential services in times of social distancing; providing essential community support to help lighten the load on first responders and healthcare professionals; advocating for the most vulnerable so they do not get left behind.

Others are feeling the pandemic’s severe economic consequences, as lost revenue and lack of funding force them to close their doors and cut off social programming to communities in need. And we know this will only get worse.

To weather the storm, and its long-term impact, communities need support.

Pooling funds allows us to be stronger together.
$300,000 of pooled funding will provide significant flexible funding to community-led solutions on the shared platform.

The Rapid Response Fund for Changemakers will quickly deploy financial support to community-led projects on the shared platform across the country.

Help us protect changemakers and mitigate the long-term economic effects of COVID-19.

Your support will enable community-led responses like:

  • Community mental health supports;
  • Helping newcomers to Canada as they navigate COVID-19 in a different language and in a new country;
  • Supporting young Indigenous leaders who are finding creative ways to help their communities, from ensuring food security for local families to supporting community health care.;
  • Creating virtual hubs for communities to connect to one another and share questions, concerns, and advice.

If you have the financial resources available and are in a position to help, we ask you to consider supporting changemakers at this unprecedented time.

For more information contact:
Leanne Burton, Director of Partnership Development

Rapid Response Fund for Remote Communities

Supporting remote community resilience to the threat of COVID-19.

Remote communities across the country are facing imminent threat and complex questions as they prepare to respond to this pandemic. For our partners and grantees across Northern Ontario, Northern Manitoba, and remote parts of British Columbia, COVID-19 threatens their health, their food supply, and their Elders—pillars of the community and keyholders of culture, knowledge, and language.

In listening to many community partners over the past few weeks, we heard common realities and shared concerns. Remote communities are facing challenges such as:

  • Increased vulnerability of supply lines and food security;
  • Potential for a deep and rapid impact of COVID-19 due to high number of people per household, general population health, and limited access to medical care;
  • Risks of increased social isolation and marginalization on an existing mental health crisis;
  • Further disruption to reviving legal orders, culture, language revitalization, and connection to lands and waters.

Communities are best positioned to address these challenges.
But they need increased access to flexible funding.

The Rapid Response Fund for Remote Communities will quickly deploy financial support directly to our network of grantees in need.

Pooling funds allows us to be stronger together.
$300,000 of pooled funding will provide significant flexible funding to address imminent needs.

Deep trust-based community relationships will allow us to quickly get critical funding where it needs to go, while honoring the self-determination of community partners.

Your support will enable community-led responses like:

  • Building capacity to locally grow and harvest sustainable food, such as gardening supplies, and processing equipment for local fish/meat harvesting;
  • Mobilizing community members to safely support Elders and/or those most vulnerable—preparing volunteers with disinfectant, cleaning supplies, and personal protective equipment;
  • Coordinating virtual video sessions to continue to offer community programming and increasing connectivity between community members inside and outside the community;
  • Sharing knowledge and practices around medicine, healing, Indigenous ways of knowing and being in times of crisis.

If you have the financial resources available and are in a position to help, we ask you to consider supporting remote communities at this unprecedented time.

For more information contact:
Leanne Burton, Director of Partnership Development

MakeWay has committed to five guiding principles to support grantees at this time, as outlined by Philanthropic Foundations Canada, Environment Funders Canada, Community Foundations of Canada and The Circle on Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada.