Read more about the steps we're taking in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Our COVID-19 plan

Our response to COVID-19

March 18, 2020

Supporting our community

The Bush Foundation is adjusting to the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic alongside the rest of our region, country and world. We’re thinking about how we can be most supportive and useful to our community as we also figure out how to manage ourselves and our work. We don’t yet know what the greatest needs will be or the best ways to support them. We do know that the economic hardship created by the COVID-19 pandemic will be challenging for many. Here’s what we’re doing right now to support our staff, partners and community:  

2020 Bush Prize cancelled to support COVID-19 relief:

We are cancelling the 2020 Bush Prize program in order to redirect funds to aid people dealing with the economic effects of the outbreak in our region. The Bush Prize is an important program to us and to the organizations that receive it, and it is an extraordinary step for us to cancel it. We think this extraordinary moment calls for it. We are very sorry for any disappointment this causes for organizations that were planning to apply. All other grant programs will continue as planned.

Disaster assistance in our region:

We are actively looking for ways to assist communities around our region during this time of need. We have already committed to supporting the launch of the Minnesota Disaster Recovery Fund and the Coronavirus Response Fund at the South Dakota Community Foundation with major contributions. These funds will help address needs that arise in those states due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are committed to finding ways our support can reach people in need in communities across the region. We will also expedite consideration of Community Innovation grant applications related to COVID-19.

Flexibility around grants:

Our grantees are balancing a lot right now, and we want to support them to focus where they need to by offering flexibility around their grants. We will be reaching out to all current grantees with more information, and will work with them to adapt grant terms as needed.

Adjustments to our operations and Bush Foundation-hosted events:

We have transitioned to remote work until further notice. Meetings scheduled at our office will be rescheduled or held virtually. Individual staff members can still be reached by email or phone as usual (visit our staff page for contact information). We are working to adapt our upcoming Bush Foundation-hosted events to be virtual. Details on specific events will be shared soon.

We are a region of caring and resilient people and we know people will find creative and kind ways to respond to this unprecedented time. We want to be as helpful as we can. We will continue to monitor and respond to new information about the COVID-19 pandemic, and will share updates as we develop and adjust our plans. Please contact us with any questions or suggestions for how we can be most useful to people experiencing hardship during this difficult time.

Jen Ford Reedy
Bush Foundation president