Government Shutdown: Philanthropy Responds

The facts are sobering. More than 800,000 federal workers not getting paid. Washington-DC area restaurants report business down 20 to 60%. A devastating halt to health and education programs provided based on historic agreements between Native tribes and the government. The Department of Agriculture says funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (food stamps) will run out by March 1. The ripple effects are not yet fully known.

But we do know this. Philanthropy and the nonprofit community are standing in the gap, as they always do. Here are just a few amazing examples:

José Andrés is at it again. With his World Central Kitchen charity and #ChefsforFeds, this restauranteur has opened a kitchen and café to feed furloughed workers in the DC area. Open from 11 am to 6 pm daily, they provide hot meals and food to go. And yes, they have been flooded with volunteers. Learn more here.

United Way of the National Capital Area in Washington D.C. established a $50,000 Emergency Assistance Fund to area nonprofits to meet people’s basic needs. Donate here.

DC Diaper Bank is helping furloughed families with necessities including diapers and period products during the shutdown. Learn how you can help here.

And when the National Park Foundation put out a call to help the parks recover after reopening, thousands of their members responded by donating and offering to volunteer once the parks reopen. Get involved here.

These are just a few examples and I could list many more. Once again, philanthropy and the army of good people who work in and support our charitable organizations are responding with heart and compassion. Leaving politics aside for now, let’s all do what we can to help.

At Impact, we’re doing our part by donating to the above charities. What will you do?

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