Half Moon Bay, CA – With some funding assistance from the City of Half Moon Bay, the Coastside Crisis Fund (CCF) has raised over $300,000 in relief aid for struggling families in the Half Moon Bay area impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
So far, CCF has disbursed $278,000 to 165 families in need, and has announced it is reenergizing its fundraising efforts as it pursues the goal of $500,000 in donations by the end of July.
The CCF was established last March, as the local shelter-in-place orders were just being implemented, to assist Coastsiders who do not qualify for more traditional relief, such as rental assistance. The consortium consists of three local non-profits – Abundant Grace Coastside Worker, ALAS (Ayudando Latinos a Sonar), and Coastside Hope.
“The Coastside Crisis Fund is an important and effective partnership which addresses a great need in our community – to assist those families who are most severely impacted by economic losses due to the pandemic,” said Half Moon Bay Mayor Adam Eisen. “The City has helped with a grant to the CCF for relief efforts, and I’m encouraging those in our community who are able to donate to consider giving to the CCF, and help make a positive impact on a very local basis.”
Donations can be made at www.coastsidecrisisfund.com, by mailing a check to Abundant Grace, 515 Kelly Ave., Half Moon Bay, CA 94019, or by contacting Rhiannon Rogstad at Rhiannon@abundantgracecw.org.
A recent New York Times article reported that Latinos make up 34 percent of all COVID cases nationwide. Latinos, which comprise 31 percent of the population in Half Moon Bay, are often struggling economically, pandemic or not. Three-quarters of local Latino families make $50,000 or less annually, with 41 percent making $25,000 or less, Abundant Grace reported in 2018.
“We formed CCF to make sure no Coastsider falls through the cracks,” said Eric DeBode, Executive Director of Abundant Grace. “People are struggling, especially those who work lower-paying jobs that have been deemed non-essential. Unfortunately, those families are typically Latinos and low-wage workers who were already struggling before COVID.”
Families aided by CCF receive $575 per month for two months and an additional $600 worth of gift cards, which in turn aid local small businesses. Gift card purchases have provided nearly $100,000 dollars of much needed revenue to local businesses. The CCF team also receives donated produce items from the Coastside Farmers’ Market, for distribution via ALAS at the Half Moon Bay Library at 1 p.m. each Saturday, along with other food and staples. There has been a line there of more than 75 cars every week since this program began.
The three CCF non-profits have partnered to share responsibilities to help Coastsiders through this difficult time. The Coastside Hope team helps families determine if they are eligible to enroll in county programs. ALAS helps offer support to families ineligible for county programs, such as therapeutic services and financial grants. Abundant Grace drives fundraising, manages donations and disbursements, and purchases and distributes essential supplies to local homeless residents.
In addition to the three CCF non-profits, the City of Half Moon Bay was also able to provide COVID-19 relief grants to four other organizations through its Community Services Financial Assistance (CSFA) grant program. The CSFA grant program was designed to provide funding to nonprofit organizations in Half Moon Bay in support of their local community services programs. The CSFA program is in its third year of operation, although this year in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the City Council decided to focus its funding efforts on organizations providing essential COVID-19 relief services to the community. The four other organizations that received funding this year are: Senior Coastsiders, The Boys and Girls Club of the Coastside, Sonrisas Dental Health, Inc., and Coastside Adult Day Health Center – which are all using funds received to administer programs aimed at helping locals with pandemic recovery.
Located 28 miles south of San Francisco, the City of Half Moon Bay is a community of about 12,500 people, situated on the peninsula between forested hills and some of the most beautiful coastlines that California has to offer. Its historic downtown is home to numerous shops, art galleries, restaurants, bed and breakfasts, and other businesses, and its celebrated beaches and parks are wonders of nature, accessible to pedestrians, bicyclists, and equestrians. With its many activities and events, beautiful natural scenery, old-town charm, and abundance of retail and commercial services, Half Moon Bay is a regional destination. The City’s website is www.hmbcity.com.