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Healthcare Foundation Springs into Action

(LaPorte) - Two weeks ago, the Healthcare Foundation of LaPorte voted to fast-track grant applications for local groups on the front lines of the COVID-19 battle.

Since then, they have handed out over half a million dollars to fifteen local agencies.

Over $78,000 has gone to food services such as the Salvation Army and food pantries.

Another $95,000 will help local elderly and needy residents with rent and mortgage payments.

But the largest amount, over $364,000, is for medical equipment for area first responders and medical providers.

Maria Fruth, Healthcare Foundation president and CEO, says additional grant requests are still coming in, but they have been quick to respond to immediate needs first.

"It has been extremely busy," she says. "But we did make a promise that we would react to major needs quickly." 

The Healthcare Foundation has set up a website for getting information pertaining to coronavirus relief. That online resource hub can be found on their website.

Here is a complete breakdown of coronavirus-related grants awarded so far:



Healthcare Foundation of La Porte

COVID-19 Related Emergency Grants awarded to the community

March 26, 2020 to April 6, 2020.


Total Grants Awarded: $574,513


Category:  Food needs for La Porte County residents with food insecurity = $ 78,400

  • Salvation Army of La Porte = $35,000 (La Porte)
    • Grant funds to be used to purchase food and supplies to continue and increase of meals distributed each night.
  • Salvation Army of Michigan City = $20,000 (Michigan City)
    • Grant funds to be used to purchase food items, boxes/bags for prepacking groceries, and personal care products (paper towels, soap, diapers, shampoo, tissue) to be distributed to those in need through the food pantry.
  • South Central Weekend Food Program = $3,400 (South Central School area)
    • Funds to provide healthy food including dairy, fresh vegetables, fresh fruit, meats and eggs to low -income families in the South Central School area.
  • Sacred Heart Church Food Pantry = $5,000 (La Porte)
    • Funds to assist purchase of necessary items for the food pantry.
  • Arise & Shine Food Center = $10,000 (Michigan City)
    • Funds to be used to purchase food and supplies due to the increased number of families accessing the Food Center.
  • Lamb's Chapel United Methodist-Good Shepherd Food Pantry = $5,000 (New Prairie School area)
    • Funds to be used to purchase food to feed families experiencing loss of income.



Category: The elderly and other high-risk populations = $95,000

  • Catholic Charities = $ 40,000
    • Funds to be used for rent, mortgage and gas card assistance for low-income La Porte County residents.
  • North Central Community = $40,000
    • Funds to be used for low-income residents of La Porte County for assistance with rent and mortgage payments.
  • Housing Opportunities =$15,000
    • Funds to be used to assist low-income La Porte County residents with rent, transportation costs and student education needs.



Category:  Healthcare & Emergency workers in need of protective gear & equipment = $364,443

  •  All La Porte County firefighters (applied by La Crosse Volunteer Fire Department) = $24,620      
    • Gear Decontamination kits for 16 volunteer fire departments in La Porte County, 4 fire departments in Michigan City and 3 fire departments in La Porte City.
  • La Porte Hospital = $163,700
    • Funds to be used to protect healthcare providers, staff and patients at             La Porte Hospital. Funding includes: Intubation Boxes, Lucas Equipment (provides mechanical chest compressions for patients with sudden cardiac arrest), Canvas Duck Masks (to protect hospital support staff and other healthcare providers- not intended for frontline providers), Glide Scope (video laryngoscopy for intubation) and Patient Bedside Monitors.
  • VNA (Visiting Nurses Association of NWI) = $19,123
    • Serving LP Co. hospice patients, for protective equipment and technology
  • La Porte County Emergency Medical Services= $157,000
    • Funds to be used to purchase 11 Lucas Equipment, which provides mechanical chest compressions for patients with sudden cardiac arrest, for each of the EMS rigs.



Category: Other needs (related to COVID-19 crisis) = $25,000

  •  City of La Porte = $20,000
    • Funds to assist hiring a Communication director during the COVID-19 crisis.
  •  La Porte County Small Animal Shelter = $5,000 
    • Funds to assist with food needs & vet for abandoned pets and owners without funds to attend pets' needs.

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