$30 Million in COVID-19 Relief Awards Distributed by Indiana United Ways

melanie.bernas@iuw.org | Aug 11th, 2020

Indiana United Ways (IUW) has completed the distribution of $30 million to United Ways, United Funds and community foundations throughout the state. More than 50 organizations in 86 counties received awards through IUW’s COVID-19 Economic Relief Initiative (ERI) Fund, which was launched on April 1 and made possible by a $30 million grant from Lilly Endowment.

IUW disbursed these funds in three rounds. The first two rounds were announced on April 20 and May 11. A third and final round has just been completed, with IUW making grants to 21 organizations totaling $4.65 million (details below).

Because of the three rounds of grants, the ERI Fund has helped organizations statewide be better prepared to reach Hoosiers who are most vulnerable to the effects of the pandemic.

Through the ERI Fund, IUW has distributed relief dollars to local United Ways, United Funds and community foundations so they can support social service agencies and other organizations that are on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic. These organizations are providing food, emergency childcare, and other locally identified needs. Each organization receiving an ERI Fund allocation will follow a community engagement plan, which can also incorporate long-term recovery efforts.

Applications were reviewed by a highly engaged standing committee of IUW that manages IUW’s ongoing natural disaster response fund. Third round awardees are:

• United Way of Adams County ($200,000)
• United Way of Cass County ($225,000)
• United Way of Greater Cincinnati ($300,000): serving Dearborn and Ohio counties
• United Way of Greater Lafayette on behalf of United Way of the Danville Area ($150,000): serving Fountain and Warren counties
• United Way of DeKalb County ($250,000)
• United Way of Madison County on behalf of United Way of Fayette County ($225,000): serving Fayette and Rush Counties
• United Way of Franklin County ($300,000): serving Franklin and Ripley counites
• Fulton County United Way ($125,000)
• Jackson County United Way ($275,000)
• United Way of Jay County ($125,000)
• Jefferson County United Way ($250,000): serving Jefferson and Switzerland counties
• Metro United Way on behalf of United Way of Jackson County ($150,000); serving Washington County
• United Way of Perry County ($175,000): serving Perry and Crawford counties
• United Way of Pike County ($75,000)
• Shelby County United Fund ($275,000)
• United Way of South-Central Indiana ($450,000): serving Lawrence, Martin, and Orange
• Steuben County United Way ($200,000)
• United Way of Southwestern Indiana ($250,000) serving DuBois County
• Wabash County United Fund ($175,000)
• United Way of Wells County on behalf of United Way of Blackford County ($75,000)
• White County United Way ($400,000): serving Pulaski and White counties

“In response to this pandemic, United Ways in Indiana are doing what we are known for: focusing on what is most needed and executing on what works locally, getting leaders to work together, and finding remedies to problems. Thanks to generous support from Lilly Endowment, United Ways and their partners in Indiana will be even better positioned to help their
communities deal with the immediate impacts of Covid-19,” said Ron Turpin of Fort Wayne, Board Chair for IUW and Board Member Emeritus for United Way of Allen County.

United Ways are leveraging local partnerships to assess needs and make community investments in organizations that are working to meet those urgent and long-term needs. United Way and other Grantees may serve multiple counties with their award and will likely release funds locally in rounds, based on changing needs. The $30 million grant from Lilly Endowment provided the resources for IUW to reach 86 of Indiana’s 92 counties, with allocations based upon population size. The remaining six Indiana counties – Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Marion and Morgan Counties – are served by United Way of Central Indiana (UWCI), a member of IUW. UWCI received grant support for this purpose directly from Lilly Endowment.


Indiana United Ways is the state association for United Ways in Indiana that supports thriving United Ways through capacity building, shared services, and partnering. For more information, contact Maureen Noe, President & CEO at Maureen.noe@iuw.org.

Lilly Endowment Inc. is a private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by J.K. Lilly Sr. and sons Eli and J.K. Jr. through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Company. In keeping with the founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, education and religion and maintains a special commitment to its hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana.

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