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Stavros Niarchos Foundation Highlighted for Addressing Mental Health

NEW YORK – May is Mental Health Awareness Month and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) was among four funders highlighted by Inside Philanthropy (IP) for efforts addressing mental health during the coronavirus pandemic. The other three funders were, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The Center for Disaster Philanthropy, and The New York Life Foundation.

The article noted that “the daily updates to staggering death tolls have become a signature of the COVID-19 pandemic, raising our collective anxiety levels” and “so has loneliness, a byproduct of shelter-in-place orders that have 47% of Americans [according to the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) Health Tracking Poll – Early April 2020: The Impact Of Coronavirus On Life In America] reporting negative mental health effects,” IP reported.

“Half of the people experiencing job losses and lost income- which have long been linked to increased levels of depression, anxiety and suicide- report mental health issues caused by worry and stress,” IP reported, adding that “phones are ringing off the hooks at mental health hotlines from New York to California.”

“One of the world’s leading private global philanthropies, SNF has invested $3 billion in building public-private collaborations with nonprofits in 126 countries since its founding by Greek shipping magnate Stavros Niarchos more than two decades ago,” IP reported, noting that “in ordinary times, the organization funds arts and culture, education, health and sports, and social welfare.”

IP continued, “In early April, SNF announced a $100 million Global Relief Initiative to combat the effects of COVID-19. Later the same month, it reported its first round of relief grants, which included $5.9 million to organizations in the hardest-hit parts of the U.S. In addition to grants supporting food insecurity and emergency relief for artists, SNF committed $1.5 million to supporting comprehensive mental health interventions for vulnerable populations, including seniors, children and frontline workers.

“The foundation created two partnerships to support seniors, one with Service Program for Older People, to provide remote mental health services, and the other with the Fund for Public Health in New York City, to ensure regular welfare checks and essential home services. Children are getting help through New Alternatives for Children with funding directed at mental health programming for kids with disabilities, chronic illnesses, and mental health diagnoses—as well as their families. And frontline workers are receiving access to COVID-19 resources on managing symptoms and patient communications through a partnership with the Center to Advance Palliative Care, and self- isolation accommodations through the American Cancer Society.”

More information about SNF is available online: snf.org.

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