County of Marin - News Releases - Emergency Relief Fund

For Immediate Release
March 19, 2020

County, MCF Partner for $1 Million in COVID-19 Relief

With each contributing $500,000, the hardest hit will have short-term assistance

San Rafael, CA – The County of Marin and nonprofit Marin Community Foundation (MCF) have joined to create a $1 million fund to assist vulnerable populations amid the COVID-19 response.

MCF allocated $500,000, with the County matching from its General Fund, to address some of the most urgent safety-net needs for local residents.

The fund will be allocated over the next two months to soften the social and economic impacts of the pandemic with five main efforts:

  • Emergency rental assistance for low-income residents
  • Expanded food for economically disadvantaged families
  • Expanded meals for seniors
  • Wi-Fi mobile access for economically disadvantaged students
  • Emergency childcare for health care workers and emergency responders

On March 19, Marin County Administrator Matthew Hymel said with the help of Marin County Public Health and MCF, County staff would work as quickly as possible to distribute the funds to qualified recipients. While these allocations will not go through a competitive grant process, the Marin County Board of Supervisors may need to consider some contracts with nonprofit partners to fully implement the assistance as soon as possible to those most in need, he said.

“Residents look to local government for help during an emergency like this,” said Board of Supervisors President Katie Rice. “Coordinating with community partners is going to be essential to helping those hardest hit. It is more important than ever for all corners of our community to come together to help those most in need.”

MCF, based in Novato, was founded in 1987 to make a difference in the lives of others through thoughtful, effective philanthropy.

“It’s at times like these when long-standing, trusting relationships really count,” said Thomas Peters, MCF Chief Executive Officer. “MCF has just such a connection with the County and its departments, and we are proud to link arms during this extraordinarily challenging period to provide critically needed services.”

Hymel plans to introduce the fund during the March 24 Board session and may receive additional direction from the Supervisors.

“With this partnership, we’re offering short-term assistance while we are waiting for federal and state support to come through,” Hymel said.

As the County responds to the COVID-19 outbreak, public input at Board meetings for all agendized items is encouraged via emailed comments submitted to the Clerk of the Board. Comments received by 3:30 p.m. the day before the scheduled meeting will be shared with the Board members and will be placed into the record. Board meetings are live-streamed during the meeting on the County website and archived in the same location the next day.

To maintain compliance with Public Health Officer social distancing orders, members of large advocacy groups who wish to comment on an agenda item should consider commenting in writing or sending one spokesperson to speak on behalf of the group.


Matthew Hymel
County Administrator
County Administrator's Office

3501 Civic Center Drive
Suite #325
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-6358
Email: Matthew Hymel
County Administrator website