LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The L.A. Education Recovery Fund today announced $1 million in grants to 10 nonprofit organizations in support of about 5,500 children in Los Angeles who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The nonprofits will provide immediate services to children in low-income communities, including foster, unhoused, special needs, and English language learners.
According to the Recovery Fund, children were catastrophically impacted by a year of Los Angeles Unified School District closures. Without in-person instruction, reliable internet, interaction with peers and access to mentorship, arts, music and other enrichment, students lost months of learning and social development -- a situation that was especially difficult in low-income communities. The group says prolonged isolation, food and financial insecurity and exposure to death and illness created a parallel mental health crisis.
“The education and mental health crisis that has impacted LA's most vulnerable children will take many years and unprecedented funding and support to fix,'' said Ana Ponce, executive director of Great Public Schools Now, which manages the Recovery Fund. “By working in partnership with LAUSD and the city and county of LA, our Recovery Fund is uniquely positioned to effectively and efficiently provide holistic services and support to our most-impacted children. Without any comprehensive intervention, there will be life-long consequences for a generation of students.''
The fund's first initiative in the summer involved a partnership with the LAUSD to provide every Los Angeles student in a low-income community the opportunity to attend a free summer program in their neighborhood. With the help of the Recovery Fund's investment, about 30,000 children attended summer camps on more than 500 LAUSD, charter school and community-based nonprofit sites.
“This summer demonstrated what was possible when all of Los Angeles comes together in support of our children,'' said Marshall Tuck, head of the Recovery Fund. “We know the work must continue especially for our most impacted subgroups of children who are still dealing with the lasting impacts of this pandemic.''
This fall, the Recovery Fund has focused its funding on the nonprofit organizations serving the most highly impacted subgroups of children in low-income communities. Some of the nonprofits that have been selected for funding are Children Youth and Family Collaborative, No Limits for Deaf Children and Families, School on Wheels, artworxLA, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights and Latino Equality Alliance.
Major contributors to the Recovery Fund include the Ballmer Group, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg/The Hearthland Foundation, Len Hill Charitable Trust and Lois and Richard Gunther.
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