September 21, 2021 (Los Angeles, Calif.) – The L.A. Education Recovery Fund (Recovery Fund), an initiative of Great Public Schools Now that directs resources to the most vulnerable children to help them overcome the unprecedented educational, mental health and social impacts of the pandemic, today announced it is funding 10 nonprofits to support approximately 5,500 Los Angeles children. These nonprofits will provide immediate services to children from low-income communities who have been most-impacted by the pandemic including foster, unhoused, special needs, and English language learners.
Children were catastrophically impacted by a year of LAUSD school closures. Without in-person instruction, reliable internet, interaction with peers and access to mentorship, arts, music and other enrichment, students lost months of learning and social development. This was especially difficult in low-income communities. Prolonged isolation, food and financial insecurity and exposure to death and illness created a parallel mental health crisis.
“The education and mental health crisis that has impacted LA’s most vulnerable children will take many years and unprecedented funding and support to fix,” said Dr. Ana Ponce, Executive Director of Great Public Schools Now, which manages the Recovery Fund, “By working in partnership with LAUSD and the City and County of LA, our Recovery Fund is uniquely positioned to effectively and efficiently provide holistic services and support to our most-impacted children. Without any comprehensive intervention, there will be life-long consequences for a generation of lost students.”
The Recovery Fund’s first initiative in Summer 2021 involved a partnership with LAUSD to provide every Los Angeles student in a low-income community with the opportunity to attend a free summer program in their neighborhood. With the help of the Recovery Fund’s investment, approximately 30,000 children attended summer camps on over five hundred LAUSD, charter school, and community-based nonprofit sites.
“This summer demonstrated what was possible when all of Los Angeles comes together in support of our children,” said Marshall Tuck, Head of the Recovery Fund, “we know the work must continue especially for our most impacted subgroups of children who are still dealing with the lasting impacts of this pandemic.”
This Fall, the Recovery Fund has focused its funding on the nonprofits that serve the most highly-impacted sub-groups of children from low-income communities. Some of the nonprofits that have been selected for funding include Children Youth and Family Collaborative, No Limits for Deaf Children and Families, School on Wheels, artworxLA, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights and Latino Equality Alliance. A full list of grantees and their funded projects is available here.
Major contributors to the Recovery Fund include the Ballmer Group, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, Kate Capshaw and Steven Spielberg/ The Hearthland Foundation, Len Hill Charitable Trust and Lois and Richard Gunther. A full list of major funders is available here.
About Great Public Schools Now (GPSN)
Great Public Schools Now envisions a great public school for every student in Los Angeles. Guided by this vision, our mission is to invest in schools, organizations and initiatives that catalyze excellence in public education, convene leaders and uplift public understanding to advocate for great public schools.