The Colorado COVID Relief Fund recently awarded a $25,000 grant to Chaffee County Public Health.

The fund was created to provide flexible funding to Colorado community organizations to address issues around COVID-19 prevention, impact and recovery, according to a press release.

The grant focuses on helping seniors and vulnerable populations connect to food, toilet paper, cleaning supplies and other basic necessities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Chaffee County, food banks and nonprofits have been ramping up their services to help those in need. For example, in just a few weeks The Creekside Gathering Place in Buena Vista went from serving one community meal a week to preparing and distributing more than 250 meals a week for housebound and vulnerable residents.

Chaffee County Public Health has distributed the $25,000 grant among The Creekside Gathering Place, The Grainery, Ark Valley Helping Hands and Central Colorado Humanists, who provide hygiene items for seniors in food boxes the Salida Community Center distributes.

“This infusion of additional funds for the Humanists’ Personal Hygiene Project came at the perfect time, with our seniors finding it increasingly difficult to make ends meet during these difficult times,” Central Colorado Humanists President Jane Jolley said.

In coming months, Chaffee County Public Health hopes to bring in additional resources that can be allocated throughout the community.

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