United Way of Greater New Bedford is closely watching the developments surrounding the spread of novel coronavirus COVID-19 in our region (New Bedford, Dartmouth, Acushnet, Fairhaven, Freetown, Rochester, Marion, Mattapoisett, and Wareham) and we are providing immediate and direct support. We have two specific ways we are providing direct assistance: emergency funding to individuals in need through Help United, and by expanding the Hunger Commission to meet the region’s increased food needs.
Read below to see what we are doing, how you can help, and who you can contact for more resources.
Help United, Greater New Bedford COVID-19 Response Fund
Individuals and families have been greatly impacted and need immediate help to get through this time. United Way of Greater New Bedford has established the Help United, Greater New Bedford COVID-19 Response Fund to provide immediate assistance to individuals and families impacted by lost wages, and the closure of schools, day cares, and non-essential businesses. BankFive has donated $25,000 and Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare Foundation has donated $10,000 to jump start this effort. Join this effort today and help your neighbors in need. Donations can be made by texting HELPUNITED to 313131 or clicking below to learn more and donate now!
The United Way’s Hunger Commission continues to serve the community by delivering food to food pantries in greater New Bedford, many of which have seen an uptick in clients since the beginning of this crisis. We are working with a number of suppliers to increase food donations to fulfill the need. Restaurants and other food industry businesses are asked to donate any food they are unable to use to the Hunger Commission. If you are a business with food to donate, please fill out this form.
If you are in need of food, click here for a list of open food pantries.
You can help us! Please take United Way’s Coronavirus Impact Survey so we can better assess your needs. You can take part by clicking here.
Get Connected. Get Help.
Read these recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control for reducing the risk of COVID-19 infection for yourselves and others.
We encourage members of our community to call 211 or visit www.mass211.org. Mass 211 is a free, confidential, non-emergency, 24-hour information and referral service that connects residents with the health and human services they need.
Anyone needing help with prescriptions costs is encouraged to use FamilyWize. Users can save up to 40% on prescriptions whether they are uninsured or under-insured. Click here to learn more.
The Homeless Service Providers Network and United Way has compiled a list of state & local resources. Click here to learn more.
Leading by Example
We are following the recommendations made by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the City of New Bedford and have taken the following precautionary steps:
- All groups and activities at our Family Resource & Development Center will be cancelled until further notice. Please check our Facebook for updates.
- Staff has been asked to change in-person meetings to an online meeting platform so work can continue without any further risk.
- We are also encouraging and deploying remote capabilities for most staff.
We’re All In
United Way of Greater Fall River, United Way of Greater New Bedford, and the Community Foundation of Southeastern Massachusetts are working together to assess the needs of our Southcoast community during the COVID-19 pandemic. As community-level needs unfold, we will rapidly deploy support and relief to organizations and residents in the most efficient and effective way possible. Click here to learn more.