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Local United Way launches fund to help locals and partners deal with COVID-19 pandemic

“It’s an opportunity for people in the community who are looking for ways to help,” United Way Hastings & Prince Edward’s Executive Director Brandi Hodge explains.

They have set-up a section of their website to allow people to donate into their “COVID-19 Community Response Fund” which they will disperse to their partners in the areas that need it most.

Hodge says there are many in the community that will have a tough time navigating the next few months and beyond. “It’s intended to help the provision of basic needs for folks who need that,” she says. “What we’re going to find in a couple of months from now people will have been unable to pay utility bills, rent as they try to weather this.”

$1,400 has already been raised, which Hodge says will be quickly distributed to United Way’s partners, like Bancroft Community Transit, North Hastings Children’s Services, and North Hastings Community Cupboard. “We’re trying to address the needs as they come up,” Hodge says. “We’re trying to be flexible in that because we don’t know how this is going to look like a few weeks out, a few months out.”

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Hodge says they’re also working with corporate partners like Proctor and Gamble, who donated a batch of supplies that will be doled out this week.

“We will keep it open as long as it makes sense to do that,” Hodge says. She adds she isn’t sure of an exact timeline.

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