After thousands of Arizona children were displaced by school closures during this spring’s teacher walkout, nonprofits stepped up to ensure those children were safe and fed. To help these organizations meet the unanticipated demand for services, Arizona Grantmakers Forum members mobilized to disperse one-time grants in communities with the highest need.

“Piper Trust commends how the community quickly mobilized, across sectors, to support children and families during an unprecedented time of need—it illustrated the power of collaborating on solutions and building resilience in our community,” said Terri Leon, program officer with Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust.

Arizona Community Foundation, Helios Education Foundation, Valley of the Sun United Way and Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust quickly formed a collaborative to pool together and distribute $130,000 to 23 nonprofits in Maricopa and Pima counties, Flagstaff and Yuma. Between April and June, the collaborative held a handful of meetings to identify nonprofits that serve Arizona’s most vulnerable children and families. By working together, the group was able to avoid duplication of funds and stretch their grant dollars.

While hundreds of Arizona schools closed April 26 to May 2 during the nation’s largest teacher walkout, the fund recipients provided care for more than 14,000 displaced children.

AGF members BHHS Legacy Foundation and Wells Fargo also granted funds to nonprofit partners during the walkout. If your organization provided additional support during this critical time and want to share your story, please contact us.