May 1, 2020

Reports from Seattle Nonprofits

How four Seattle nonprofits responded to the COVID-19 crisis in the first weeks of the pandemic.

In Washington State, which had the nation’s first confirmed case of the coronavirus, nonprofits are on the leading edge of the response. They have acted quickly to sustain their critical services while supporting the well-being of employees and volunteers. Here four leaders of Seattle nonprofits share their first-person accounts during the first weeks of the crisis.

  • Jewish Family Service: CEO Will Berkovitz on building and using a crisis response team, figuring out how best to keep serving clients, making decisions during a crisis, and operating while conditions are changing rapidly.
  • Alliance for Education: President and CEO Lisa Chick on the critical role of the area schools, involvement of the philanthropic community, and racism towards people of Asian descent.
  • Rainier Scholars: Associate Executive Director Monica Parker on balancing public health needs with doing the organization’s essential work, communicating with families and staff, and developing contingency plans.
  • YouthCare: Development and Communications Officer Jody Waits on managing with a reduced staff, making adjustments to standard protocols, and responding to offers of help.

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