Gerstner Philanthropies Awards $7.9 million to Emergency Assistance Providers through the Helping Hands Program
As of March 1, 2023, Gerstner Philanthropies has awarded $7.9 million in Helping Hands funds to 24 social service organizations and colleges, a 47% increase from last year’s grantmaking. $7.3 million will expand support to existing emergency grant programs at 19 grantees across the country, with an additional $0.6 million supporting new partnerships with public colleges within the New York City area. Over $0.7 million of the awarded funds will support a new program capacity-building initiative at seven organizations with the goal of improving Helping Hands program efficiency and expanding its reach to serve more people in need.
By both deepening and widening our grantmaking for 2023, Gerstner Philanthropies aims to provide aid to a larger number of individuals in need and give our partners the tools they need to carry out their work most efficiently and effectively.
The Gerstner Helping Hands program seeks to help people at a critical moment with a need triggered by an emergency. Gerstner Philanthropies awards grants to organizations that work one-on-one with individuals, whose staff distributes small, one-time grants based on our guidelines combined with holistic case management services to help their clients avoid falling into poverty. The program’s goal is to make a difference in someone’s life with a lasting impact, whether that be enabling families to remain housed, assisting domestic abuse survivors with rebuilding a safe and stable life, or ensuring hard-working college students graduate.
Each year, Helping Hands reaches over 3,500 households, providing assistance with critical needs, including rent, utilities, medical expenses, and food. While Helping Hands grantmaking is focused in three core locations (New York, Boston, and Palm Beach, FL), in 2022, Gerstner Philanthropies expanded the reach of Helping Hands through partnerships with national organizations, Family Promise and Catholic Charities USA.