In response to the impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, The Hormel Foundation has approved a number of supplemental grant applications for social and community services in Austin and Mower County.

Among the recipients of supplemental grants made in the first six months of 2020:

  • The Austin Community Charitable Fund received $26,000 to fund a gift card program to benefit the Salvation Army as well as small businesses. When a gift card to a local business is purchased by a community member, a matching amount will be given to the Salvation Army.
  • The Austin Public Library is using $38,000 to lease 200 internet hotspots for six months to be used for 160 students whose lack of connectivity is challenging their ability to participate in distance learning.
  • Riverland Community College received $10,125 to purchase masks for all students and an additional $15,000 to fund a program to assist students impacted by the pandemic.
  • Two organizations addressing mental health needs in the community received grants: Nexus-Gerard Family Healing received $65,000 for telehealth services and the Comprehensive Human Services Foundation received a $20,000 supplemental grant to provide mental health services to low-income and uninsured/under-insured clients.
  • SEMCAC Community Action Agency provides meals to senior citizens through the Mower County Senior Center. Since its meal program shifted to a pick-up service, demand for the program has grown. In response, the Foundation has donated $152,000 to help provide approximately 1,000 meals per day.