Supporting hard-hit communities during a time of unprecedented need


The need for immediate and long-term support in our community has never been greater due to the COVID-19 crisis. We are helping those who are hardest hit, including restaurant and service-industry workers and the undocumented community, as well as providing support to local organizations on the frontlines of the pandemic, focusing on those directly serving populations who are:

  • Experiencing food insecurity and housing instability
  • Struggling to afford other basic necessities

Our response to COVID-19 will continue to evolve based on the needs of our partners and the local community.

The number of people relying on food assistance more than doubled since the beginning of the pandemic to more than 2.2 million people.

Persons of color are 1.5x more likely to be food insecure than white people.

1 in 7 renters are not caught up on rent during the pandemic, with renters of color facing greatest hardship.


WA COVID Response Corps
The Plate Fund
WA COVID Response Corps

The WA COVID Response Corps, a partnership between the Foundation and Serve Washington, aims to address food insecurity issues and create meaningful service opportunities for young people, to help keep our most vulnerable neighbors fed and healthy during these difficult times.


WA COVID Response Corps members and their host sites impact to date:

  • 127,000 service hours completed
  • 30.9 million pounds of food provided
  • 83.8 million meals served
  • 2 million individuals served
The Plate Fund

To serve those who make a living serving others, we partnered with #allinseattle, Seattle Foundation, UpTogether, and a coalition of restaurants, foundations, and individuals, to launch #ThePlateFund, an initiative that provided immediate, one-time payments of $500 to the most impacted restaurant-industry workers in King County.

To ensure assistance went to the most vulnerable and hardest-hit communities, #ThePlateFund formed partnerships with El Centro de la Raza, Falis Community Service and Asian Counseling and Referral Service. Each organization helped direct payments to affected workers within their respective networks, including those who may be undocumented or unbanked, and may not be eligible for government assistance.


#ThePlateFund impact to date:

  • Raised $7.9 million through the support of 3,200 donors
  • Served 15,800 restaurant workers in King County
  • Two-thirds of recipients lived in zip codes classified as economically distressed by the King County government
  • 195 partner organizations


During the COVID-19 crisis, people experiencing homelessness or housing instability are some of the most vulnerable populations in our community. As a long-trusted establishment in the community, the Mary’s Place team is working hard to meet the increased demand for food, daytime children’s programs, remote learning, and medical supplies.

Individuals and families are experiencing higher trauma, instability, and vulnerability due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Building Changes and Africatown stabilize our neighbors facing crisis by providing access to flexible funding resources to support basic needs (housing, food, utility payments, etc.) through an Emergent Needs fund modeled after the King County Centralized Diversion Fund.

Community Food Fund: United Way King County and the City of Seattle, with support from the Foundation, launched a Community Food Fund that has support 27 organizations and community groups that support BIPOC and Immigrant/Refugee-led programming and partnerships. These agencies are deeply trusted, know their community well, and stepped up during the pandemic to support them. In total, culturally relevant food has been provided to 40,000 individuals impacted by COVID-19.

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