COVID-19 Response Impact

United Way’s COVID-19 Response supports organizations providing immediate and critical needs, like food, childcare for first responders and essential workers, and housing support to community members impacted by COVID-19.

We’ve awarded $1.2 million in emergency response grants to more than 50 organizations serving people in Missouri and Illinois.


We’ve received so many inspiring stories and words of gratitude from funded organizations and individuals who received help through these programs. Here is how we’re helping the Greater St. Louis region during COVID-19:

Fighting hunger

With many families already facing limited access to transportation, childcare and grocery stores, COVID-19 has made it even harder for many to afford and access basic needs. We helped St. Louis Area Foodbank purchase essential items in bulk, host over 130 pop-up distribution events that each serve 300+ families and distribute more than 800,000 pounds of food in ONE week. Through St. Louis Area Foodbank and other organizations like Catholic Urban Programs, we are helping feed people across the St. Louis region.

Supporting essential workers

From healthcare workers to grocery store employees to bus drivers, essential workers are on the front lines helping our community. But with kids home from school and many childcare facilities closed, parents need a safe place to send their children so they can continue to work. We are helping the Gateway Region YMCA create a safe space for essential workers to bring their children. Our support has helped more than 250 families with childcare, allowing essential workers to continue helping our region stay safe and healthy.

Providing rent & utility assistance

This crisis has caused unemployment rates to spike and put so many neighbors on the edge of hunger and homelessness. We’re helping over 900 people stay in their homes through financial assistance for rent, mortgage, utilities and household items.

Securing safe housing for women

Staying at home during the COVID-19 crisis may be the safest option for some, but that may not be the case for domestic violence survivors. United Way 2-1-1 has seen a nearly 20% decrease in calls for domestic violence resources during COVID-19 compared to last year, which can be an indication that survivors aren’t able to get away from their abusers to make those calls. Through organizations like St. Patrick Center and YWCA Metro St. Louis, we’re helping secure safe housing for women who have experienced domestic violence.

Connecting community members to healthcare resources

On top of social distancing, immigrants and non-native English speakers face cultural, language and insurance barriers to receiving healthcare. We’re helping nonprofits like Casa De Salud ensure immigrants and non-native English speakers have access to healthcare. They expanded their staff of professional interpreters to facilitate more than 200 telehealth appointments in April – helping them receive the quality care they need.



“Without help from United Way, there would be more people on the street initially, and then even more over time in the coming months. There would be more people living in unsafe situations. There would be chronic homelessness.”

- St. Patrick Center

“We’ve been partners with United Way for over 30 years. We’re in crisis and fighting a war. So when United Way selected us to be a recipient, it made me feel not alone and validated that our work is important. We’re still going strong and getting to say yes to things we might not have been able to say yes to.”

- Crisis Nursery

Make A Difference

Help us support those affected by COVID-19 today.