Today the Visa Foundation announced $8.8 million in grants from the Visa Foundation’s $10 million COVID-19 emergency relief fund to support leading humanitarian assistance and disaster relief organisations globally.
In Europe, the Visa Foundation has this month distributed $1.4 million of relief grants to organisations supporting the frontline response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including Medecins Sans Frontieres, UNICEF and Red Cross, providing critical services for vulnerable households, vital medical supplies and support to at-risk individuals in Europe.
These grants are part of the Visa Foundation’s previously announced $210 million commitment, with $10 million in COVID-19 relief focused on the emergency needs of organisations worldwide. A further $200 million will address longer-term needs of the small and micro business community over the next five years.
“Communities and families around the globe are facing unprecedented challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Charlotte Hogg, CEO, Visa Europe. “The vital work of these humanitarian organisations becomes even more important during a crisis of this scale.”
Across Europe, COVID-19 has placed extraordinary challenges on people’s everyday lives. It has impacted access to basic goods, services and healthcare, bringing financial hardship to millions. The economic uncertainty has reduced the ability for many in the community to provide for their families. The grants to Medecins Sans Frontieres, UNICEF and Red Cross, will provide much needed support to these organisations to help them continue to provide critical services to people across Europe.
“We’re grateful for the amazing work humanitarian assistance organisations are providing to communities around the world affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, “said Graham Macmillan, president of the Visa Foundation. “The Visa Foundation is proud to offer these grants to support these organisations’ mission-critical work during these perilous times.”
The forthcoming 5-year $200 million programme will support small and micro businesses, with a focus on fostering women’s economic advancement, both of which will be critical to long-term economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. This commitment expands the Visa Foundation’s long-standing support for small and micro businesses globally. Additional information on the Foundation’s grant and investment strategy will be shared in the coming months.