help_outline Skip to main content

MAVA Voice

Urgent- funding for Volunteer Shortage
Author Last Post

MAVA is likely to apply for funding from the The Minnesota Disaster Recovery Fund (MDRF). See information below. MAVA would serve as an intermediary organization to pass the funds to nonprofits who are struggling to meet the basic needs of their clients due to the volunteer shortage and COVID 19.  The application is due Wednesday March 25th at noon. I need to hear from you by 10:00am on Wednesday!

It would be very helpful if you and your executive director/development director  could email me at to tell me how a $10,0000-$50,000 grant would keep people (primarily people from underserved  and remote populations) healthy, fed and housed during this COVID 19 crisis. The funds need to be used to support volunteer efforts in your nonprofit and be in direct response to COVID 19. Please tell me how you would use the funds. I would like to include the needs you have in my narrative.  We will hear Friday if we were awarded the funds to pass on to nonprofits. I need you to respond to me immediately on Wednesday morning.

This is the MDRF request for proposals:
The Minnesota Disaster Recovery Fund (MDRF) was created to support community needs as a direct result of the
coronavirus pandemic. The MDRF will provide grants to community intermediaries with a history of community
assistance. Grants are intended for, but not limited to, addressing needs that arise for individuals and families due to the economic impact of coronavirus; addressing needs nonprofits are experiencing due to increased demand for services or social distancing recommendations and closures; and addressing needs small businesses are experiencing due to interrupted operations. The MDRF funds both short and long-term needs that arise within communities, due to coronavirus or future disasters that occur within the state of Minnesota.
Eligible organizations are community intermediaries, such as local community foundations, Minnesota Initiative
Foundations, tribal nations, community development financial institutions, coalitions, networks, associations, and other intermediaries who have the knowledge to address specific needs in their communities, as well as the ability to be nimble and responsive in times of emerging needs. These organizations must have an existing grant-making or fund distribution process in place to get funds to individuals and families, nonprofit organizations, and/or small businesses.
Funds will be awarded on an ongoing basis until further notice and grant awards will be based on competition of
requests in relation to fund balance. Proposals will be considered weekly. The Advisory Committee may hold onto a proposal for consideration in the future, depending on other proposals received. Our intent is to keep the
application process simple and concise.
The following criteria will be considered when reviewing the proposals:

Coronavirus Impact. Requests should aim to support individuals and families, nonprofits, and/or small businesses to address needs specifically created by coronavirus and its economic impact on the community.

Equity. The fund will provide special consideration to requests that focus on populations impacted by coronavirus that were already experiencing structural inequities prior to the pandemic. Inequities can be exacerbated by
disasters, and the fund will provide special consideration to supporting marginalized communities that may be hardest hit and face a steeper road to recovery (low-income, black, indigenous and people of color, undocumented, rural, LGBTQ, disabled, etc.) Note: This list is not meant to be exhaustive of what equity considerations may look like in the context of coronavirus.

Community Recovery Focus. This fund is focused on supporting individual and whole community recovery from the pandemic. This fund is not meant to fund government or supplies or other medical responses. Recovery can take a long time, so the Committee will look to fund both short and longer-term recovery efforts.

Unmet needs. Could this need be met by a federal or state program or by other funds designed for coronavirus
recovery? This Fund will be used to meet unmet needs, not duplicate or fund programs that other larger funding programs could cover. Requests that reach groups that might not have access to resources otherwise will be prioritized.
Advisory Committee members will also consider the total mix of grantees to ensure a statewide response that includes individuals/families, nonprofits, and small businesses. Grantees will be required to submit a brief narrative report and itemized budget at the conclusion of the grant.

Karmit J Bulman
Executive Director

Return to Forum