08-17-2020


David was experiencing shortness of breath.

As an undocumented American, he was afraid to leave for the hospital and afraid to leave his family alone—so he called the Latino Community Fund of Georgia.

He was desperate, and he thought this could be one of the last phone calls he ever made. He needed it to count.

His eight family members, all undocumented, were living in an apartment together. David wanted to make sure his family was supported and taken care of in case he died.

A representative with the Latino Community Fund reached out to the Grady Health System for a health professional who specializes in assisting undocumented clients like David. Over the course of two conversations, the health professional encouraged David to seek treatment. David survived his bout with the coronavirus, but he had been left with an $81,000 bill.

Now, the Latino Community Fund is working with him to understand and negotiate his expenses and help as he and his family move on from this.

The Latino Community Fund was one of the most recent recipients of grant funds made possible through the Greater Atlanta COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, a joint effort from United Way of Greater Atlanta and Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta.

On Aug. 11, United Way and Community Foundation announced the seventh round of grants for the COVID-19 response. Latino Community Fund received $200,000 to provide emergency financial assistance for Latinx communities throughout Greater Atlanta.

The seventh round of grants totaled roughly $1.13 million and targeted emergency financial assistance for housing-related costs. The grants went to 10 organizations in response to the region’s needs as a result of COVID-19.

About two weeks into March, major cities across the country began shutting down restaurants, bars, gyms and schools in an attempt to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus. As of Aug. 13, COVID-19, which is a respiratory illness with symptoms such as cough, fever and in severe cases, difficulty breathing, has infected more than 5 million people nationwide and killed more than 165,000.

This seventh round of grant funding from United Way and Community Foundation allows organizations to provide emergency financial assistance in response to this crisis for a period of up to four and a half months.

Nine of the grants provided emergency financial assistance and legal support to combat evictions for some of our most vulnerable, low-income populations — undocumented and immigrant families with children, families who may face threats from domestic violence, families who live in extended stay motels and families without formal leases.

David’s employer has not hired him back, and he currently has no job to provide for his family. There are many other stories like his around Greater Atlanta.

To help those in need, donate to the Greater Atlanta COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund. If you would like to empower communities of color in Greater Atlanta impacted by decades of systemic barriers and disinvestment, donate to the United for Racial Equity and Healing Fund.

You can also ensure that all children in Greater Atlanta have access to the same resources and opportunities by donating to the Child Well-Being Impact Fund.