Foundation’s response to virus timely, generous

Published 4:54 pm Tuesday, September 8, 2020

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The Suffolk and Western Tidewater region is quite fortunate that there exists the means by which various agencies and non-profit organizations can get needed financial boosts for their goals. In this case, we’re thinking of the generosity of the Obici Healthcare Foundation, which recently announced it’s providing more than $1.2 million to fund some needs in our community.

Normally, the Obici group’s largesse is directed toward efforts that frequently promote health of individuals or communities. Clinics, shelters and classes come immediately to mind. Disaster relief is not a usual motive. But as the foundation’s president Annette Beuchler has explained, “… We all recognize we are living in non-traditional circumstances and need to adapt to meet the community needs during this public health pandemic.”

Those “non-traditional circumstances” to which she refers are of course, directly connected to the COVID-19 pandemic. There is little, if anything, that has not been affected by the novel coronavirus’ presence in the world.

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Some examples of recipients and their intended use of money include:

  • The Genieve Shelter, $53,660 for personal protection equipment, professional cleaning services, food and motel vouchers
  • Western Tidewater Health District, $91,273.84 for updated equipment to provide “pop-up” testing events
  • Suffolk Public Schools, $50,000 for a virtual social-emotional learning curriculum
  • Suffolk Department of Social Services, $100,000 to assist citizens with the payment of household utilities when their household income has been adversely impacted
  • Suffolk Economic Development Authority, $200,000 to help businesses that have experienced losses in operating hours, revenue or reductions in staffing
  • Paul D. Camp Community College Foundation, $40,070 for resources, on-line tutoring, Workforce Development, and facility sanitation protocols.

We’re encouraged that the board will consider a second set of COVID-19 fundings next month.

Further, we commend the foundation for generously responding in this case, and feel confident that the recipients will make the best use of money possible.

To learn more about the COVID-19 Response Funds available in October, visit and click on the COVID-19 Response Fund in the website banner. Please note there are eligibility requirements and program and budget justifications needed to apply.