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Dear Asheville Community,
Like many of you, we are stunned. While we are uncertain about what is to come for our communities, we are clear about our mandate for these times: We will care for each other.
We know that fundraisers, listening sessions, support groups, youth gatherings, and other essential community-sustaining events have been cancelled. We know that what will happen with the economy and with the flow of donations and funding is a significant concern for so many of you. We know that many of you are juggling care for little ones and elders alongside the load of standing for and with the community. We know that there are emerging connections happening in so many innovative ways and, at the same time, a deep feeling of isolation creeps in.
The situation our community faces is sudden and serious. Your needs are changing. What our community requires is revealing itself. And who we will be on the other side of this will be shaped by what we are learning from this moment.
Here are concrete actions we are taking now.
We are working to get emergency funds into the hands of Asheville-based grantee organizations ASAP.
We are closing our office for shared use in accordance with the latest public health recommendations. In lieu of a physical space, we are sharing resources to facilitate online, virtual meetings.
Staff are working from home and available by email and phone. We are paying attention to what is happening in Asheville. Last year, we completed an in-depth community research project, but we are not done listening. Please reach out as you need to.
We did not plan for this, but we have spent the last year grounding in the following truths. Relationships matter most. We do not have time to avoid the difficult but necessary next steps. As we resist the old ways of doing things, new and better ways reveal themselves. These truths are guiding us now more than ever.
Wishing health and wellbeing to you and your families as we find our way in these new days,
Heather, Marsha, Lindsay, Jennifer, and Amy