Gerstner Philanthropies COVID-19 Response

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We seek to help people at a critical moment with a need triggered by an emergency. Our hope is that this assistance will make a difference in someone’s life with lasting impact.

The primary way that we offer assistance is by making grants to social service and other organizations (including colleges), whose staff then applies strict criteria and distributes grants averaging approximately $1,000. It is important that the organizations that receive our grant offer additional support services.

We focus on programs that work directly with individuals one-on-one. The majority of our Helping Hands grants go toward rent, particularly needed in the primary areas where we fund – New York City, Boston, and Palm Beach County – where there is not enough affordable housing. We also help with expenses such as utilities, transportation, moving, furniture, or clothing that an individual is temporarily unable to pay for because of an unexpected hardship.

We may make a limited number of grants to programs that connect individuals to additional community resources.

Our Grantees


Major Helping Hands Grants


Grants listed below may be from the Gerstner Family Foundation or another Gerstner family philanthropic vehicle. Amounts may reflect cumulative annual grants or multi-year grants. To see annual amounts, please see listings of grants paid each year.

  • Adopt-A-Family

    Lake Worth, FL | Visit Website

    To support the Housing Stabilization Program.

    $1,650,000

  • The Bridge Fund of New York

    New York and Westchester, NY | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant/loan program to prevent homelessness in New York, NY.

    $1,962,500


    To support the emergency cash grant/loan program to prevent homelessness in Westchester County, NY.

    $632,500

  • Coalition for the Homeless

    New York, NY | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant program.

    $570,000


    To support the First Step Job Training Program.

    $150,000

  • FamilyAid Boston

    Boston, MA | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant program.

    $850,000

  • Good Shepherd Services

    New York, NY | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant program.

    $787,500

  • The Havens Relief Fund Society

    New York, NY | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant program.

    $1,750,000

  • Lenox Hill Neighborhood House

    New York, NY | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant program.

    $600,000

  • Part of the Solution

    Bronx, NY | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant program.

    $730,000

  • Safe Horizon

    New York, NY | Visit Website

    To fund the Emergency Client Assistance Program.

    $2,307,500

  • Sanctuary for Families

    New York, NY | Visit Website

    To support the emergency cash grant program.

    $755,000


    To support the Economic Empowerment Program.

    $150,000

  • SUNY Student Emergency Funds

    New York State

    To support student emergency funds at several colleges and universities across New York State.

    $752,232

  • Treasure Coast Food Bank

    Fort Pierce, FL | Visit Website

    To support the mobile food pantry program and SNAP outreach.

    $531,750


    To support the workforce development program.

    $100,000

  • United Neighborhood Houses

    New York, NY

    To support the eviction prevention program across sixteen settlement houses.

    $1,000,000

Stories

Linda is a hardworking fulltime employee at a local hospital, a single mother with one child. Linda and her son moved to Massachusetts to escape a domestic violence situation and start over. She had stressful custody disputes with her child’s father that also affected her working hours and changed her income for the worse. At the time that she applied for funding, this family had exhausted every option available to them for funding and housing, including sleeping on friends’ couches and sleeping in her car. In March 2019, she was granted $1,150 to assist with rent payments. When her caseworker from a partner agency followed up with her in December 2019, she stated that, thanks to the funding, her family was stably housed and was able to get back in good standing with her rental payments and maintain full time employment.


FamilyAid Boston

Helping Hands News