COVID-19 Response Grants

The Federation has established two goals for our COVID-19 emergency response:

Goal #1: Address urgent needs of populations most acutely impacted by the crisis
Goal #2: Address short-term needs to help stabilize our Jewish ecosystem

To determine these priorities, the Federation conducted an in-depth needs assessment survey of each core ecosystem sector and the organizations within, followed by 1:1 conversations with the leadership of 34 organizations. We also consulted numerous national sources local foundations, and Federations in other communities

Grants to Support Urgent Human Service and Economic Needs for Affected Populations 

Grantmaking will expand the capacity of front-line organizations to respond immediately with essential safety-net services for priority populations including seniors, economically disadvantaged, recently unemployed, at-risk due to social isolation, or COVID-19 illness. 

Grants to meet the needs of affected Bay Area Jewish populations

Grants are funded by COVID-19 Response Fund, Jewish Women’s Fund, Jewish Teen Foundation, and endowed restricted funds.  

Organization Need Amount
Alameda County Community Food Bank  Increased distribution to incorporate new sites serving 20% of Alameda County residents, including the production of Emergency Food Bags for seniors and families, and food-service to nine school districts. $15,000
Bay Area Community Services (Oakland) First responders to thousands experiencing mental health, housing, and other crises.  One of the frontline providers for Keep Oakland Housed.  Also partnering with the cities of Hayward and Emeryville to provide rental relief. $10,000
Bay Area Jewish Healing Center Spiritual care for home-bound including elderly and infirm; positioning for increased demands for the end of life spiritual care related to COVID-19. $20,000

Berkeley Food & Housing Project

Helping with staffing and supplies to support COVID-19 response services


San Francisco Campus for Jewish Living

Preparations for the surge of COVID-19 cases, transformation of beds for short-term acute care, increased staffing expense, supplies, and personal protective equipment (PPE). $150,000

City and County of San Francisco COVID-19 Response

Critical care for medically and economically vulnerable, those facing economic hardship or a housing crisis related to COVID-19, and local businesses and nonprofits in San Francisco. $20,000
Compass Family Services - Families Helping Families Fund Serving 3x the usual number of new families in Q2; distributing grocery gift cards; food pantries; provided hotel rooms for 30 families to allow Shelter-in-Place $5,000
East Oakland Youth Development Center Emergency Fund Especially for their displaced college students, assistance with travel home, housing, food, medicine, etc.  $5,000
Faithful Fools Street Ministry        Providing financial help for COVID-19 response supplies and rent support


Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano  Ramping up efforts to secure more non-perishables and expand warehouse space to meet increased demand; mobilizing staff and volunteers with attention to new health/safety protocols to assemble boxes for distribution. $15,000
HealthRight 360 Increased safety needs, personal protective equipment, and increased staffing costs at clinics in San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Contra Costa County. $20,000
Hebrew Free Loan Association Jewish Women’s Fund COVID-19 Relief Response to Hebrew Free Loan for small business grants to Bay Area women $37,800
Institute on Aging Training and equipment to allow home care aides to maintain support for isolated and home-bound seniors, compliant with CDC and Department of Public Health requirements during the COVID-19 crisis.  $20,000

 Bay Area COVID Response 

Jewish Community Free Clinic - Sonoma Implementation of HIPPA-compliant telehealth system and personal protective equipment for staff in clinic. $15,000
Jewish Family and Community Services – East Bay Realignment of senior services and mental health support during shelter-in-place, increasing demand for direct financial assistance for economically vulnerable clients. $150,000
Jewish Family and Children’s Services – San Francisco Increased demand for all services to vulnerable populations, including direct financial assistance for individuals to meet urgent basic needs, food for delivery or pick up at five food pantries, support for home-bound seniors, domestic violence, and mental health counseling. $225,000
Jewish Vocational Services Preparation for a surge in unemployment services, due to massive layoffs and furloughs Bay Area-wide. $115,000
Jews of Color Field Building Initiative The Jews of Color Initiative COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund will provide direct financial support People of Color in the Bay Area Jewish community experiencing financial hardships resulting from the COVID-19 crisis. Direct support to individuals will range from $250-$2500, and must be used for a) rent or mortgage payment, b) transportation to work or medical, c) utilities, d) groceries, e) medical bills, or f) burial expenses. Eligibility includes people who identify as Jewish, are employed by or otherwise affiliated with Jewish organizations. $50,000
La Luz Center Crisis Fund (Sonoma) Financial assistance; connection to local food banks; help with benefit applications (CalFresh, MediCal, unemployment) $10,000
Loaves and Fishes of Contra Costa Taking JFCS-EB referrals.  Shifted from 700 dine-in meals per day to 2500 a week for to-go pickup, causing a shift in production and materials needed. $ 5,000
Peninsula Volunteers (Meals on Wheels San Mateo) Increase in 1,200 meals per week (usually over 3,000); expanded caregiver services $ 5,000
Project Open Hand Anticipating doubling of demand in Sonoma and north counties from people facing COVID-related food insecurity; activating emergency response including temporary distribution outposts in Petaluma, Santa Rosa, and Healdsburg. $25,000
Redwood Empire Food Bank Shift food provision model for coronavirus safety: preparation of frozen meal packs, home delivery, and meal service to 7 SROs in San Francisco, onboarding additionally registered dieticians to meet surging need for medically tailored meals for COVID-19 patients and other clients. $15,000
Repair the World Serve the Moment Initiative to mobilize Jewish young adults and college students in acts of meaningful service and learning to address the COVID-19 crisis. Bay Area community support. $20,000
The Reutlinger Community for Jewish Living To support operations in line with increased health and safety standards due to COVID for seniors in residential facilities. $25,000
RotaCare Bay Area Continuation of medical care for uninsured and economically vulnerable throughout the pandemic, including personal protective equipment for in-person visits, and telehealth services. $25,000
Samaritan House Mobile meals to home-bound seniors, free clinics in San Mateo and Redwood City, telephone counseling, and “Food Pharmacies” for community members facing food insecurity. $15,000
SF New Deal Helping keep 85 small business restaurants open, with employees employed, while also serving meals (350k so far) to needy seniors (and others) via distribution partners.  Focused on a short term goal of raising $200K to extend meal service to the SF African American Faith-Based Coalition of 18 Black congregations that they've been providing meals to since the end of March.   $20,000
San Francisco-Marin Food Bank Pop-up food pantries, extra shelf-stable food resources, home delivery for vulnerable, increase focus on food safety. $15,000
Second Harvest of Silicon Valley Increased demand in food from newly unemployed and disadvantaged populations in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties, currently serving over 250,000 people per month. Adapting to new CDC and DPH guidelines for food safety related to COVID-19. $15,000
Shalom Bayit Increased demand for support services due to the safety needs of at-risk women sheltering-in-place coupled with revenue loss from the canceled fundraising events. $35,000
Sinai Memorial Chapel Preparation for a surge in COVID-19 funerals beginning by end of April; sliding pay scale, including no-cost funerals for the indigent. $25,000
Unity Council COVID-19 Emergency Fund (Oakland) Financial and housing assistance; help with benefit applications (CalFresh, MediCal, unemployment); food distribution $10,000
Urban Adamah Implementation of a new delivery of farm-grown produce to home-bound seniors and disabled. $25,000
Whistlestop "Expanded Services Fund" (Meals on Wheels Marin) Significant expansion of meal delivery services, including local restaurant meals and groceries. The walk-in food pantry is also available. $5,000
  TOTAL $1,207,300

Hebrew Free Loan Pooled Recoverable Grant

Donors with assets in donor-advised funds and supporting foundations managed by the Federation can make a grant recommendation, which is pooled with others into a recoverable grant for a 5-year term.

When the 5-year term ends and the funds are returned, donors can recommend grants for other charitable purposes.  

organization need amount
Hebrew Free Loan Association of San Francisco

To meet the unprecedented demand for zero-interest loans, requested by community members facing lost wages, reduced small business income, increased childcare costs, and food or housing insecurity due to the COVID-19 crisis.

To learn more, contact Tanya Shadoan, Director of Philanthropy Operations and Impact Investing.

Recoverable Grants from Donor-Advised Funds & Supporting Foundations: $4,597,500

Recoverable Grant from Federation’s Unrestricted Endowment: $1,000,000 


  TOTAL $5,597,500

Grants for Urgent Human Service Needs in Israel and Global Communities

These grants complement our local emergency response, while also carrying out the legacy intentions of our donors. Grants are funded by endowed restricted funds and the Jewish Teen Foundation.

organization Need amount
American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, Inc. Providing Covid-19 Emergency Aid in Argentina $5,000
Ashoka Formed “Aging IL,” a coalition of government and municipal representatives, CEOs of businesses, and leading Israeli insurance funds mapping the current main challenges for older adults during the COVID‐19 crisis. They are collaborating to develop immediate solutions to combat loneliness, ensure access to healthcare, digital literacy, and self‐positioning. $20,000

Ahava Children and Youth Village

Emergency plan to provide for emotional, developmental, and physical needs of 200 children staying in apartments with foster parents during COVID‐19. $20,000
Eretz‐Ir (The Brigade) Organizing a network of young volunteers to make phone calls to alleviate the loneliness of Russian senior citizens living in public housing, and providing lectures to new immigrants from the Former Soviet Union about Israeli politics and society in Corona times and beyond. $15,000
ITIM Seeks to help immigrants navigate State‐administered matters of Jewish life. Assistance Center will counsel them on holding weddings and funerals, using mikvehs, and more based on health regulations, and through work with social welfare organizations, government authorities, and the rabbinic establishment. $15,000

JDC Israel

Will train volunteers online who will be paired with older adults to teach them to use mobile phones and computers to stay connected. $34,000

JDC Israel

Providing basic needs services to older adults that are not currently funded by the Government of Israel, including continuing rehabilitation therapy through digital technology, delivery of supplies, essential transportation for individuals and their caregivers, and remote communication and counseling. $120,000
JDC Israel Educational and training materials to reach approximately 1 million new immigrants, caregivers, and vulnerable families in multiple languages (Russian, Amharic, and English) to address topics like handwashing and disinfection practices, digital literacy, recognizing Coronavirus symptoms, the need for social distancing, how to behave under the new guidelines, and more. $10,000
Lehetiv Hotline to provide professional counseling in 5 languages to new emigres to help them navigate the Israeli system to seek financial assistance and other essential services, as well as emotional counseling. About 400 families with the greatest needs will receive rent/bills payment assistance, food packages, help with technology, and more. $15,000
Ma'ase Center  Association Assistance for 60 Ethiopian‐Israeli families of Ma’ase participants and alumni, including food vouchers and other essential products, mentoring, mental support and guidance, and computers so they can continue their training online. $50,000

Moona ‐ A Space for Change

At the invitation of Stanford University’s Schools of Bioengineering and Medicine, Moona is developing a highly-scalable cost‐effective prototype that will enable hundreds of small‐scale ‘cottage’ manufacturers to produce the nanofibrous porous mesh that is the central component of industry-grade N‐95 surgical masks. $15,000
Olim Beyahad Providing alumni with financial and occupational guidance, and planning support to help graduates reintegrate into the workforce after the crisis ends. We are also supporting university students and high school students in continuing their studies by connecting participants to study together. $50,000

OneDay Social Volunteering

OneDay will mobilize its young adult community to distribute 3,000 food packages to elderly and at‐risk youth. $10,000


Accelerating the process of Aliya of the Jewish community in Ethiopia, as individuals in camps are at high risk of exposure to COVID‐19 since the virus has reached Ethiopia. $30,000

Sanad Association

While all the schools in Israel are now teaching online, families in Arab villages in the triangle area have no digital devices or access to the internet. This funding will allow the printing of educational and health materials to be handed out to children in these villages. $10,000

The Israel Association of Community Centers (IACC)

Developing new solutions that are aimed at maintaining the fabric of community life in the current situation, by creating programs that will take care of all parts of society and the community, especially vulnerable populations that need us the most, such as newcomers (Olim), the elderly, those with special needs, etc.  $30,000

The Israeli Civic Leadership Association (Civic Leadership)

Forming an advocacy campaign to urge the Israeli Government to form an emergency fund for Israel’s third sector. Israel’s nonprofit sector has been damaged by delays in critical budgeting decisions due to Israel’s election crisis, and many NGOs are unable to meet the growing need for services due to COVID‐19.     $10,000

 The Jewish Agency for Israel

Provide food for 140 immigrant households in quarantine and for 1,354 elderly from the FSU in Amigour facilities, stipends for 280 single immigrants and 140 families, 300 computers to immigrant children in absorption centers, and will purchase a three‐month supply of disinfectant. $250,000

The Jewish Agency for Israel

Meet the basic nutrition and hygiene needs of the 8,000 vulnerable Jews living in Jewish Agency compounds in Ethiopia waiting to make Aliyah. Over the next 9 months, we aim to provide 2 extra bars of soap per month for 3,150 families to halt the spread of Coronavirus, and to provide emergency food packages to 200 older adults. $50,000

Yeladim Latzafon ‐ Migdal Or

Remote emotional support, information about rights, real-time online guidance and training on various topics, the adaptation of remote functional rehabilitation, and social activities for visually impaired individuals. Throughout this crisis, we expect to manage 100 calls per week, 40 therapy groups, social activities for over 1000 participants, adaptation and implementation of remote functional rehabilitation, and a pilot for 100 service recipients.  $50,000





Grants to Address Needs to Stabilize Our Jewish Ecosystem

Bridge and Reopening Grants to Jewish Institutions

To support organizations impacted by lost revenue, facilitate a safe and healthy re-opening, and assist with startup costs to adjust or resume operations.  Funding to camps provides refunds to families, alternative summer programming, and/or incentives to encourage families to donate or defer/credit their camp fees. Grants are funded by the COVID-19 Response Fund and the unrestricted endowment.

Reopening Grants for Jewish Preschools

Schools are facing enormous challenges to opening, from stringent and costly health requirements to teachers leaving, to families struggling with financial hardship. Grants will support new expenses such as cleaning and protective supplies, equipment for facility adaptations, and additional janitorial and teacher staffing. $1.125 million was raised from the Jim Joseph Foundation, Rodan Family Foundation, and the COVID-19 Response Fund.

Resilience Fund for Synagogue Communities

Through the COVID-19 Response Fund, we met the needs of the synagogue and Chabad communities through match funding for direct emergency aid and community aid projects.


B'nai Israel Jewish Center $500
Chabad Emeryville $500
Chabad Jewish Center of Petaluma $2500
Chabad of Alameda $1000
Chabad of Daly City


Chabad of El Cerrito $2750

Chabad of Fremont


Chabad of Greater South Bay


Chabad of Mill Valley $3600
Chabad of Novato $2000
Chabad of San Francisco


Chabad of Solano County


Chabad of Sonoma County


Congregation Beth Am $2500

Congregation Beth Israel


Congregation Chevra Thilim


Congregation Rodef Sholom


Peninsula Sinai Congregation


Richmond Torah Center - Chabad $1000

Temple Beth Abraham




Emergency Scholarship Pools

To leverage significantly more funding to support individuals and families in financial need over the long tail of this crisis. Funds are provided by the unrestricted endowment, endowed, restricted funds, Jim Joseph Foundation, Rodan Family Foundation, and individual donors. Fundraising will continue to meet the needs to the greatest extent possible.

Day School Emergency Scholarships



Bais Menachem Yeshiva Day School


The Brandeis School of San Francisco



Brandeis Marin



Contra Costa Jewish Day School



Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School     



Jewish Community High School of the Bay



Kehillah Jewish High School



Oakland Hebrew Day School



South Peninsula Hebrew Day School



Ronald C. Wornick Jewish Day School



Meira Academy $13,750 5
TOTAL: $1,175,802 288

Preschool Emergency Scholarships

Jewish Overnight Camp Scholarships

Camp Name total amount total campers
Camp Eden Village West $30,750 22
Camp JCC Maccabi $17,650 14
URJ Camp Newman


Camp Ramah of Northern California


Camp Tawonga $93,600 61
TOTAL $309,500 241

Connecting Families and Children in the Time of COVID

To expand small group models for families and children from birth to 12 who would benefit from a supportive Jewish network during and beyond the COVID pandemic. Grants are funded from annual fundraising and COVID-19 Response Fund. 

organization Need Amount
Bay Area Friendship Circle Small group programming for children with special needs, their families, and teen volunteers $42,000
Be'chol Lashon Multicultural Jewish Family Network - a cohort of families focusing on identity and race $45,000
Camp Tawonga Small cohorts of 11-12-year-olds and their families in Tawonga's B'nai Mitzvah Program $45,000
Chabad Jewish Center of Petaluma JVillage - home-based, family-led micro-villages facilitated and empowered by Chabad  $30,000
Congregation Beth Am Expand Chavurah family program (alternative religious school model) through small family groups $45,000
Congregation Beth El   Expansion of Katanchicks program for families with children 0-3, moving from drop-in programming to parent-led cohorts $31,000
Congregation Kol Emeth “Wiggles and Giggles” virtual experiential educational music program for parents and children based on cohort groups $45,000
Congregation Ner Shalom Nitzanim - low barrier Jewish education program with groups for 2nd-4th grade, 5th and up, families, and parents $30,000
Gan Israel Preschool Chavurot (family cohorts) of families with young children, meeting in Gan Israel’s Outdoor Community Playspace $39,000
JCC East Bay Parent “pods” in the JCC’s preschool and afterschool programs $45,000
Jewish Gateways Growing Together family learning program - small groups based on diverse families' needs/interests $45,000
Or Shalom Jewish Community Or Shalom Belonging Initiative - Chavurah small group structure for member and non-member families  $45,000
Oshman Family JCC Family pods for preschool families, school-aged families, and Israeli mothers of newborns/expecting $45,000
Peninsula JCC Family Circles initiative - identity and interest-based cohorts (JOC, special needs, social action, children 0-2) $45,000
Studio 70 Chiburim (Connections) Initiative - in-person childcare pods, afterschool online programming, virtual parent and grandparent learning and connecting $45,000
The Kitchen Kitchen Playground, expansion of small groups targeting families from expecting to 2nd grade $45,000
Urban Adamah Jewish farm-based after-school pods (in-person) and virtual parent respite offerings $43,000
URJ Camp Newman Newman Sparks Families cohorts for 30 families with young children, built around the family camp $45,000
Wilderness Torah B'hootz - Expansion of youth outdoor Jewish education programs in pod format $45,000
  TOTAL $800,000


Young Adult Resilience and Belonging During COVID-19

To address ongoing COVID-related issues of anxiety, depression, and isolation among Jewish young adults and college students in the Bay Area. Grants are funded from annual fundraising and COVID-19 Response Fund.

organization Need Amount
At The Well Well Circle Coaching Program: Activating a New Wave of Jewish Leaders in the Bay Area $20,000
Challah for Hunger Building Community through Advocacy in the Bay Area $35,000
Congregation Beth Am The Orchard $45,000
Congregation Beth Sholom Young(ish) Program $25,000

Congregation Sha'ar Zahav

Kaf Lamed Program $20,000
Hillel at Davis and Sacramento Jewish Learning Fellowship and Wellness $12,000
Hillel at Stanford The Grad@Hillel Empower, Elevate, Enrich (E3) Initiative $15,000
Hillel of Chico Find YOU in partnership with Chico Hillel $5,000
Hillel of Silicon Valley Activities Facilitating Belonging and Connectedness $3,000
Honeymoon Israel Bay Area "HMI at Home" $25,000
JCC San Francisco 2020/21 Young Adult Initiative $36,000
Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) Changemakers Fellowship $5,000
JIMENA Your Adult Journey Through the Middle East and North Africa $30,000
Moishe House Moishe House in the Bay Area $50,000
OneTable OneTable: Shabbat as an Antidote to Loneliness $50,000
San Francisco Hillel San Francisco Jewish Graduate Network $15,000
Repair the World Serve the Moment in the Bay Area $31,500
Santa Cruz Hillel Hillel Learning Fellowship $7,500
Urban Adamah Nurturing Belonging in Local Diverse-Identifying Jews $40,000
Wilderness Torah BaMidbar: small group, immersive, in-person & online programming for Young Adults $40,000
  TOTAL $510,000


Activities Addressing Both Goals of Our COVID-19 Response

Federation Philanthropy Partners ($5,915,724 Granted as of 12/25/20)*

Our donor-advised community (donor-advised funds and supporting foundations) has stepped up to meet the sudden and drastic health and socio-economic challenges caused by the pandemic.

  • The majority of grants are going to human service organizations like Jewish Family and Children Services, SF-Marin Food Bank, and Jewish Home and Senior Living. 
  • Funders are focusing their COVID response locally with 85% of total funder designated COVID response grant dollars going to Bay Area organizations.

*An additional $2,078,920 was granted to the Federation’s COVID-19 Response Fund. We omitted this figure from the total above because they are already counted on this page. The total granted is $7,994,644.