Private Family Foundation Collaborates with OCF to Fund COVID Relief

We talked with Mari Jo Prlain, Executive Director of The Reser Family Foundation, about the organization’s collaboration with OCF to fund COVID relief. The Foundation reviewed and responded to nonprofit funding requests that came through OCF as the crisis unfolded.

OCF: How did The Reser Family Foundation learn about COVID-related nonprofit funding requests through OCF?

MJP: The Reser Family Foundation heard about the idea of collaborating with other funders to have a collective impact across the state. We felt this was a unique opportunity to respect non-profit organizations in Oregon so that they would be able to apply in just one place for the support they needed, rather than apply with each foundation. We were very grateful for Oregon Community Foundation’s leadership as they continue to share their expertise to make our state as strong as possible during this most vulnerable time. 

We would also like to extend our thanks to OCF’s leadership team for embracing the need to support our non-profit partners, respecting their time and bandwidth.

OCF: What types of organization(s) did The Reser Family Foundation fund, and why?

MJP: Since April we’ve funded—and will continue to fund through August—essential services, supporting front line organizations working directly with those most vulnerable to impacts from COVID-19. We’re also supporting schools that needed help with distance learning tools, and culture organizations.

OCF: What is The Reser Family Foundation’s goal in funding these?

MJP: Our goal is to have collective impact in our community, balancing the needs of rural and urban communities while realizing that recovery will require a strong partnership with public, private and non-profit organizations.

OCF: How does this giving relate to The Reser Family Foundation’s priorities?

MJP: The Reser Family Foundation cornerstones guide our giving: health, education, arts and environment. During COVID, we’re leaning more heavily towards health, education and arts because the short-term needs are so pressing.