When we established the Emergency Human Needs Fund in mid-March as a way to help our for-impact partners in Ottawa County, we couldn’t imagine the outpouring of support we’d receive from the community.

Over the course of ten weeks, the community coalition that we formed together with the Greater Ottawa County United Way, the Community Foundation of the Holland/Zeeland Area, and other organizations has raised over $900,000 for the Emergency Human Needs Fund, and awarded over 100 grants to area nonprofit organizations that are continuing to address the increase in basic human needs throughout the county. Here are a few stats:

  • Donors: 670
  • Volunteers: 362
  • Money raised: over $900,000
  • Amount granted: over $900,000

Nonprofit agencies in Ottawa County have committed to keeping people fed, housed, and healthy as best as they can. But these organizations face challenges as they balance their missions with the additional workload of managing the threat of COVID-19.

Grants have focused on food, housing and shelter, health and mental health, vulnerable populations, and immigrant and migrant communities. Please note, some organizations assist in multiple categories.


“The funds provided will be used to mobilize food distributions throughout northern Ottawa County to care for those facing food insecurity, homelessness and unexpected medical needs. Already the resources provided have helped us to quickly provide thousands of local residents with food who are facing unexpected challenges in this time.” – Josh Bytwerk, Executive Director of Love in Action of the Tri-Cities

  • Barnabas Ministries – $1,500
  • Bridge Youth Center (Zeeland)– $1,500
  • Community Action House – $60,000
  • Coopersville Cares* – $30,000
  • Family LIFE Center – $1,000
  • Hand2Hand – $10,000
  • Harvest Stand Ministries – $27,500
  • Kids’ Food Basket (Holland) – $20,000
  • Love in Action* – $42,500
  • Love Inc Allendale* – $32,500
  • Love Inc Hudsonville* – $32,500
  • Muskegon YMCA (Veggie Van: brought to Ottawa County in collaboration between the Grand Rapids YMCA, the Muskegon YMCA and the Tri-Cities YMCA) – $3,500
  • Ottawa Community Schools Network (Coopersville) – $1,500
  • The People Center* – $15,000
  • Ripple Effect – $1,000

* organization also serves housing and shelter needs

Housing & Shelter

“The level of uncertainty this pandemic is creating, paired with layoffs and mandatory stay at home orders have resulted in an escalation of violence and abuse for many of the families in our community whose homes are not a safe haven. We have already witnessed an increase in the severity of cases and in the number of requests we’re receiving for emergency safe shelter. Funds received from the Emergency Human Needs Fund will allow us to temporarily expand our emergency safe shelter capacity for survivors of intimate partner violence in Ottawa County. This funding will literally save lives and for that, we are eternally grateful.” – Beth Larsen, Executive Director of Resilience: Advocates for Ending Violence

  • Benjamin’s Hope† – $2,500
  • Good Samaritan Ministries† – $120,000
  • Holland Rescue Mission – $25,000
  • MOKA† – $2,500
  • My House Ministry† – $2,500
  • Resilience: Advocates for Ending Violence – $35,000
  • The Salvation Army† (Grand Haven) – $65,000
  • The Salvation Army† (Holland) – $40,000

† organization also serves food needs

Health & Mental Health

“The current health crisis has increased demand for addiction services while in many cases making it dangerous to provide treatment in groups or one-on-one clinical sessions. Telehealth platforms provide a means of continuing to provide treatment is a safe and confidential environment. This funding from the Emergency Human Needs Fund will allow OAR to provide additional and critical services to those suffering from addiction through an enhanced Telehealth platform, while assuring the safety of OAR clients and staff.” – David D. Teater, Executive Director of Ottagan Addictions Recovery

  • Arbor Circle – $20,000
  • Beacon of Hope – $12,500
  • Bethany Christian Services – $22,500
  • Children’s Advocacy Center – $8,500
  • City on a Hill – $2,700
  • Emmanuel Hospice – $1,000
  • Extended Grace/Momentum Center – $10,500
  • Holland Free Health Clinic – $3,000
  • Harbor Hospice Foundation – $1,000
  • Lakeshore Pregnancy Center – $2,500
  • Midtown Counseling – $15,660
  • Mosaic Counseling – $45,000
  • OAR – $25,000
  • ODC Network – $2,500
  • Wedgwood Christian Services – $1,500
  • West Michigan Open Source Medical Supplies Group – $10,000

Vulnerable Populations

“Four Pointes would like to thank the Care Ottawa County Coalition for the Emergency Human Funds awarded to our Home Care program. The funding is allowing our Home Care staff to provide essential services such as grocery shopping, meal preparation, prescription pick up, bathing, personal care, and sanitizing homes to our most frail and vulnerable elderly in northern Ottawa County. Four Pointes social workers and staff are also addressing social isolation issues by making weekly wellness check in and assurance phone calls. We could not be doing this without [their] support and generosity.” – Kim Kroll, Director of Community Living at Four Pointes Center for Successful Aging

  • Evergreen Commons – $10,000
  • Four Pointes Center for Successful Aging – $15,000
  • LifeCircles PACE (Holland) – $10,000
  • RestHaven – $5,000
  • Senior Resources of West Michigan – $5,000

Immigrant & Migrant Communities

“During these times of uncertainty, it is critical for us to ensure that all of the people who call Ottawa County home are receiving access to the resources they may need. Some of our Ottawa County residents are afraid to seek assistance and if we don’t ensure everyone is healthy and cared for, eventually we will all be impacted as a result one way or another. Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect and this fund reflects the value that Ottawa County has for all its residents regardless of their immigration status.” – Reyna Masko, spokesperson for the Immigrant Relief Fund

  • ATLAS Ministries – $2,500
  • Latin Americans United for Progress (LAUP) – $5,000
  • Lighthouse Immigrant Advocates – $10,000
  • Migrant Resource Council – $7,500
  • Misión Holland – $1,000
  • The Emergency Needs Programming of  Francis de Sales Catholic Church – $5,000
  • The Immigrant Relief Fund of  John’s Episcopal Church – $20,000
  • West Michigan Hispanic Center – $20,000

Thank you to everyone who has given to this fund. Effective May 18, the collective Emergency Human Needs Fund has closed and all future donations will go to the Community Relief and Recovery Fund, which is Phase 2 of our COVID-19 response. Donations are still strongly encouraged, as the need in our community has risen exponentially since the outbreak.

“As we move into this second phase of relief and recovery, we recognize that the challenge for many organizations is just beginning. Our mission has always been to address the needs facing West Michigan, and this is no different.” – Hadley Streng, GHACF President

As we shift our attention to how we can best serve our community in the face of these new challenges, please be assured that we will continue to monitor the needs of our community, and as we learn more over the coming weeks and months, we will share how you can continue to care for our community.

The website careottawacounty.com continues to keep the public informed of how they can help and get help. In addition, we have a page on our website dedicated to COVID-19 updates where you can see where we’ve given grants, how you can help, and how you can get help if you need it.