Buckner is the recipient of a $15,000 unrestricted grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation to support its work in the Rio Grande Valley during the COVID-19 pandemic. The money will help fund operations at the Buckner Family Hope Center at Peñitas, where family coaches continue to serve families through a variety of virtual methods.
The grant is part of Wells Fargo’s ongoing efforts to proactively support organizations in the Rio Grande Valley that play a significant role in supporting the community through the phases of the pandemic. It is part of the $175 million pledged by Wells Fargo to help address food, shelter, small business and housing stability, as well as provide help to public health organizations.
“It’s important in times of community need that we all work together,” said Alma Ortega Johnson, Wells Fargo South Texas & El Paso Region Bank President. “We’re grateful for the leadership of Buckner in the Rio Grande Valley and its ability to act quickly in caring for our local residents. We hope our support provides a measure of relief as we stand with the community during this challenging situation.”
Wells Fargo is one of the most active corporate supporters of Buckner in the Rio Grande Valley, contributing financially since 2013. In 2015, Wells Fargo began sponsoring annual home builds through Buckner, fully funding five homes. Buckner was also selected for Wells Fargo’s 2019 Day of Caring, which gave more than 60 volunteers the opportunity to build houses. In addition, volunteers from Wells Fargo began leading finance and entrepreneurship courses at the Family Hope Center for clients of Buckner.
In compliance with social distancing and shelter-in-place orders, Buckner adapted the ways it serves children and families in the Valley. The Wells Fargo grant will help Buckner family coaches at the Family Hope Center continue to work with clients on a regular basis through online classes, such as Faith and Finance, weekly client touch bases, virtual counseling and food distributions.
“Many families come to Buckner when they are at the end of their rope. This has been true before the pandemic and will continue to be true through and after,” said Diego Silva, director of the Buckner Family Hope Center at Peñitas. “We serve one of the most vulnerable populations in our state and country, and the level of hardship this pandemic has brought to the families in our communities are overwhelming. On behalf of the clients we serve, thank you to Wells Fargo. Their generous grant will help our staff continue to work with vulnerable families on a regular basis to ensure they receive the support, guidance and resources they need. We are all in this together.”