ST. LOUIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Bayer Fund, a philanthropic arm of life sciences company Bayer, today awarded $3.9 million in grants to 80 charities and non-profit organizations throughout the United States, $300,000 of which is dedicated to supporting initiatives related to COVID-19. Each grant will go toward a program that contributes to one or more of Bayer Fund’s key focus areas: health and wellness, food and nutrition, community development and STEM Education.
The St. Louis Area Foodbank, Urban League of Greater St. Louis and POISE Foundation of Pittsburgh were each awarded a grant for $100,000 to help support programs in their community related to COVID-19. During the coronavirus pandemic, many food banks, including the St. Louis Area Foodbank, have seen an uptick in need in their local communities; this has put an increased strain on their daily operations and facilities. The grant provided by Bayer Fund will go towards upgrading their refrigeration system, allowing them to continue to provide fresh, healthy and nutritious food to families, children and seniors in the region.
“This year, non-profits and other service providers have seen an increased need for support in their communities, whether it be through food donations, programming or other essential needs,” said Al Mitchell, President of Bayer Fund. “We’re proud to support these organizations by providing resources and tools to help address these needs and allow them to serve their local communities.”
For more than 100 years, the Urban League of Greater St. Louis has been dedicated to serving the St. Louis community through providing educational opportunities, economic development, community empowerment, and civil rights and advocacy work. Since COVID-19, the organization has provided $3.5 million in food, toiletries and PPE supplies through their weekly distribution events. The grant awarded will provide additional support to this program and their efforts to help families in the St. Louis metropolitan area.
“The Urban League is proud to have partnered with Bayer Fund for many decades, assisting people in need in the St. Louis Region,” said Michael McMillan, President and CEO of the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis. “This year, we pivoted our charitable collaboration to our COVID Humanitarian Relief efforts assisting individuals that have been impacted economically with food and toiletries. Bayer Fund helped provide much needed PPE materials to the agency to go into the zip codes with the highest concentrations of the virus. As a result of the generous support of Bayer Fund and our partners, we’ve been able to serve 75,000 people since the pandemic began.”
POISE Foundation of Pittsburgh was created in 1980 as the first public foundation in Pennsylvania organized and managed by African Americans. Their mission has been to provide support to the Black community through its leadership, collective giving and grant and advocacy work. During the COVID-19 pandemic, POISE Foundation created the Critical Community Needs Fund (CCNF) to support small to mid-sized Black-led organizations to respond to the critical needs in the African American community. The CCNF has raised more than $1.1 million and has provided grants to 92 separate Black-led, Black-serving organizations. The $100,000 grant will support small to mid-sized African American led organizations that provide medical- and healthcare-related aid.
“As we have seen across the nation, COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on communities of color, and in particular upon the Black community,” said Mark Lewis, President and CEO of POISE Foundation. “We’ve also seen that many of our small to mid-sized Black-led organizations and businesses have been left out or left behind from many of the government relief programs. These are often the very organizations that are nimble, cost effective, and have deep and intimate relationships with the people they serve. We are grateful to Bayer Fund for stepping forward in such a major way to help underwrite the CCNF program.”
In addition to grant donations, Bayer Fund awarded $649,700 through its matching gifts program. This program is offered to all Bayer employees across the United States and allows them to donate up to $2,500 a year to a qualified local charity or multiple charities of their choice, and Bayer Fund will match 100% of the employee’s donation. In May, Bayer Fund announced an extension of this program and allowed Bayer employees an opportunity to donate an additional $2,500 to their preferred qualified local charities to help support more organizations and non-profits, during the pandemic. Through this initiative, Bayer Fund awarded an additional $168,000.
Overall in 2020, the Fund awarded $17 million to 3,300 charitable and non-profit organizations to help address essential needs in food and nutrition, community development and STEM education. In the last five years, non-profit organizations across the United States have received more than $80 million from Bayer Fund.
About Bayer Fund
Bayer Fund, a philanthropic arm of Bayer, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening the communities where Bayer customers and employees live and work by providing funding for food and nutrition, education and community development projects. For more information, visit www.fund.bayer.us.