Mr. Arlen “Benny” Cenac Jr. recently announced that the Arlen B. Cenac Jr. Foundation and the Gheens Foundation were joining forces to assist the Bayou Community Foundation’s Bayou Recovery Fund for COVID-19 Relief by making matching donations in the sum of $50,000.00 each. The intent of the Bayou Recovery Fund is to provide emergency grants to Lafourche Parish, Terrebonne Parish, and Grand Isle nonprofits filling critical needs of local residents most impacted by the current health and economic crisis.
According to the Bayou Community Foundation, community needs have been escalating as the coronavirus threat has spread in the Bayou Region and thousands of workers now find themselves out of work. “Food banks are currently grappling to fill the surging demand for food while other nonprofits are preparing to help with rent and utility assistance from a growing number of unemployed. Hospitals and health care facilities are striving to protect health care workers and patients, and displaced students are struggling to continue their studies without essential technology. Nonprofits are also bracing for an uptick in calls to crisis counseling lines and increased incidences of domestic violence,” says Bayou Community Foundation Executive Director Jennifer Armand.
The Foundation awarded its first round of grants for COVID-19 relief programs totaling $198,845 to 21 local nonprofits during a virtual grants ceremony on Thursday, April 23, 2020 for food and medicine distribution, rent and utility assistance, virus testing and protective measures, and education support services. Nonprofit grant applications for the second round of COVID-19 relief grants are due May 22, and those grants are expected to be announced in early June. All grants are being funded by tax-deductible donations to the Bayou Recovery Fund, available at https://www.bayoucf.org/disaster-recovery/.
Both the Arlen B Cenac, Jr. Foundation and the Gheens Foundation felt the need to support area organizations was great during this extraordinary time. Both residents and organizations are going through difficulties unheard of in our lifetimes. “The Houma area and it’s residents mean so much to me. These are unprecedented times and both the Gheens foundation and myself felt something had to be done to assist the greater good of our area. The Bayou Community Foundation’s efforts are going to assist so many non-profits to assist several area residents,” state Mr. Arlen “Benny” Cenac, Jr.
The Gheens Foundation has long supported area residents in their time of need. While based in Kentucky, their connection to Gheens and the surrounding region runs deep. “Our mission is to improve the life for the residents of metropolitan Louisville and Lafourche and Terrebonne Parishes in Louisiana to meet the emerging needs of our communities. We can’t think of a better way to assist the community than to offer aide to BCF during this time,” said Chair and CEO, Michael B. Mountjoy.
To learn more about BCF’s efforts, please visit https://www.bayoucf.org.