Our Response to COVID-19
March 19, 2020
Dear friends and neighbors:
Strong, resilient, vibrant, healthy. Communities that work for, and are safe for, every resident. Thank goodness for the work of Minnesota’s community leaders as COVID-19 puts our systems and relationships to the test!
As Blandin Foundation travels this journey alongside you, we are adapting in the following ways:
Pooling our resources — With other Minnesota foundations, we created the Minnesota Disaster Relief Fund, which will channel millions of dollars through community foundations and the Minnesota initiative foundations.
Finding new ways – Events such as our broadband convenings and leadership training retreats are moving online or being reimagined. We know that community leaders need and deserve support now more than ever.
Seeing the good – Strength and innovation already are emerging from Minnesota’s rural communities. We see you! We are using the #LeadershipMatters and #ruralMN tags in social media so that you can see each other.
Support and flexibility for grantees – We welcome conversations about revisiting any grant objectives, timelines and terms so that our grantees can focus on emergent needs.
Operations continue – Like other organizations, Blandin Foundation must take steps to minimize public health risks and impacts. Increasingly, you will find our staff working remotely. We can be reached by phone or email. We also have closed our building to visitors and installed a drop box outside the front door. Despite these temporary changes, please know that Blandin Foundation is more committed than ever to the success of your work and we are here for you, even if virtually.
Thank you for your courageous leadership at a time when it’s needed most. In my decades of working with rural communities across this country, I have seen over and over their ability to bounce back. This knowledge fuels my hopefulness.
Kathleen Annette, president and CEO