Dear Partners and Friends,

As the Chicago region grapples with unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19, we are grateful for your ongoing work to provide essential public services, tackle inequities, and create communities where everyone has the opportunity to thrive.

We can’t imagine a more difficult time for Chicago area nonprofits. Many vital programs are being disrupted at a time when people need them more, daily operations altered, and budgets stretched by increased demand for services and the cancellation of revenue-generating events – all in a context of tremendous and extraordinary uncertainty. The challenges are even greater for those providing direct services to people at the highest risk due to the virus itself and the economic impacts we are already seeing.

Like you, this community is at the heart of everything we care about. In these anxious times, we want to reaffirm our commitment to you and your work. Your priorities may be shifting as you determine how best to provide for communities, and the path to meet your original program goals may no longer be clear. While we know you remain deeply committed to continuing your work, we also realize that during this crisis it may not be realistic to meet the project goals you once expected to achieve. Please know, we understand and will prioritize flexibility regarding reporting.

In recognition of the challenges you are facing now and those that will be posed to our region in the days and weeks ahead, many of us have joined together and with others to contribute to a fund as one way to support those impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

The Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund will provide flexible resources to community-based organizations across the Metropolitan Chicago region to supply essential aid to the individuals and households who are most impacted by the pandemic. Those resources currently include access to emergency food and basic supplies, rent and mortgage assistance and utility assistance. Learn More.

We will continue to monitor the impact of COVID-19 in our community by listening to you to understand your experience and the experiences of those you serve. We are heartened by the way organizations across our region are rising to this challenge and are committed to doing our part to help ensure this critical work continues.

Thank you for your leadership and partnership in helping our city weather this crisis.


Iris Krieg, Executive Director, Albert Pick, Jr. Fund

Joel M. Friedman, President, The Alvin H. Baum Family Fund

Helene D. Gayle, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Chicago Community Trust

Adam Levine, President, Circle of Service Foundation 

Mary Pounder, Program Director Comer Family Foundation

Greg DiDomenico, President and CEO, Community Memorial Foundation

Leslie Ramyk, Executive Director, Conant Family Foundation

Evan Hochberg, President, Crown Family Philanthropies

Arne Duncan, Managing Partner, Emerson Collective/Chicago CRED

Angelique Power, President, The Field Foundation 

Rachel Garbow Monroe, President and CEO, Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation 

Maria Socorro Pesqueira, President, Healthy Communities Foundation

Phyllis Glink, Executive Director, The Irving Harris Foundation

Janet Froetscher, President, JB and MK Pritzker Family Foundation

Lonnie Nasatir, President, Jewish United Fund 

John Palfrey, President, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Ellen S. Alberding, President, The Joyce Foundation 

Liz Kramer Lefkofsky, Executive Director, Lefkofsky Family Foundation 

Craig Leva, President, Leva Family Foundation

Unmi Song, President, Lloyd A. Fry Foundation

Kelsey Malnati Howell, Executive Director, Marc and Jeanne Malnati Family Foundation

Allyson Park, President, Mars Wrigley Foundation

Gayla Brockman, President and CEO, Michael Reese Health Trust 

Kim R. Van Horn, Managing Director, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation 

Gillian Darlow, CEO, Polk Bros. Foundation

Charles TwichellExecutive Director, Prince Charitable Trusts

Julie Wilen, Executive Director, Pritzker Pucker Family Foundation Pritzker Foundation 

Cindy Moelis, President, Pritzker Traubert Foundation 

David Hiller, President and CEO, Robert R. McCormick Foundation 

Na'ilah Suad Nasir, President, Spencer Foundation

Sean Garrett, President and CEO, United Way of Metro Chicago 

Robert N. DiLeonardi, Executive Director, VNA Foundation 

Michelle Morales, President, Woods Fund Chicago

Illustration by Ellen Litwiller

To the Comer Family Foundation community partners outside of Chicago:

We recognize this is an incredibly challenging time for you and your community. We encourage you to visit your regional philanthropic partner’s website and contact your local community foundations for additional emergency resources available to you. If you have difficulty finding information, please email us.

Learn More

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