Disaster Recovery Fund activated in response to COVID-19 Pandemic

On behalf of Greater Des Moines, the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines is activating the Disaster Recovery Fund (DRF). The DRF was created in partnership with disaster response and philanthropic organizations in Greater Des Moines to develop a collective strategy for charitable giving during times of disaster. As our community and its most vulnerable populations are facing the effects of COVID-19, the DRF provides an opportunity for the public to give with the reassurance their donations will be used to quickly move resources to where they are most needed and to adapt to evolving needs. 

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About the Disaster Recovery Fund

The Community Foundation’s board of Directors has committed an immediate $100,000 to the DRF. The funds are available thanks to the generosity of donors who have supported the Community Foundation’s Better Together Fund. United Way of Central Iowa has matched this contribution with an additional $100,000 to support the DRF. This collaborative community effort has already received initial support from Businessolver Foundation, Cultivating Compassion: The Dr. Richard Deming Foundation Fund, Mid-Iowa Health Foundation and the Polk County Board of Supervisors. 

As we make supporting our most vulnerable populations the top priority in this unprecedented time, there is no administrative fee for participating in the fund. The Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines is covering the cost of the staff leading and facilitating this effort. In addition, donors making a credit card contribution have the opportunity to increase their gift amount to cover the credit card processing fee.  

Dollars received will first focus on disproportionately affected communities by addressing economic needs and the health impact on vulnerable populations caused by COVID- 19 related closures and other impacts of the outbreak. The long-term application of the fund will focus on additional needs that will inevitably arise. This long-term recovery work will be ongoing and it is the intent that this fund continues to grow and serve as a source that can be activated quickly in the face of whatever the next disaster may be.

The DRF extends beyond a single disaster and is a key part of the community’s coordinated disaster response. Preparedness work will be continuous and ongoing. The fund is activated in times of local disaster as recommended by local Emergency Management authorities.
We may not know what tomorrow will bring, but thanks to support of the DRF we have the confidence that we stand ready to meet the challenge. Our community has proven time and time again that we are better together and this collaborative spirit will once again prevail as we support our neighbors in need.

Disaster Recovery Fund Investments

Click here to view a complete list of investments from the Disaster Recovery Fund. Learn more about the organizations and collaborations supported by investments from the Disaster Recovery Fund as they are announced here. Watch the video below to see the Disaster Recovery Fund's impact in action.


• To read FAQs on the DRF, click here. To learn more about the DRF's purpose and investment approach, click here.

• For general questions, inquiries about the DRF or interest in partnering, please contact Angie Dethlefs-Trettin, chief community impact officer, at or 515-244-0340.

• For media inquiries and interview requests, please contact Sara Bonney, chief marketing officer, at or 515-447-4201.

• To make a donation by check please send to:
Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines
c/o Disaster Recovery Fund
1915 Grand Ave.
Des Moines, IA 50309

To give using other other assets, such as stock, contact Lynne Yontz, chief charitable giving officer, at or 515-447-4203. Thank you for your generosity.

Thank you to our partners

Thank you to our partners who have come together from philanthropy, government, and business to support our community through the DRF.

About the Disaster Recovery Fund

The DRF was created in recent months as a critical component of the community’s collaborative Disaster Recovery Plan. The DRF Coordination Team consists of the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines, United Way of Central Iowa, Polk County Emergency Management Agency, American Red Cross- Central Iowa Chapter, IMPACT, Polk County and Community Family and Youth Services- Polk County. The group engaged in conversation with nonprofit organizations and other services providers through a series of meetings in late 2019 to lay the groundwork for unforeseen challenges such as this.