Coronavirus Assistance Center


DIY Face Masks 

Thank you, Fisher House for leading the charge by making face masks for our DOD personnel. Our local nonprofits, childcare providers, and other organizations are also in need of face masks, and YOU can help from your home!    For drop-off locations please view the comment section.  Sew and no sew instructions from the CDC:  

if your business or organization would like to receive some of the donated face masks, please contact Brittnee, Director of Community Impact & Engagement:


Congratulate a Graduate & Thank Our Local Heroes

 Let’s work together to build a stronger              community by inspiring those who need it and thanking those who are working tirelessly to keep our community safe. Write a note from the comfort of your home. To send your message please click here:


Adopt a Grandparent

We’ve added a volunteer opportunity that is certain to brighten someone’s day. We are looking for virtual volunteers to get on board and adopt a senior living in a senior home unable to see their family or have visitors. Help make this time of quarantine a little more tolerable for the seniors in our community.  To sign up click here:


COVID-19: How We Can Help


United Way Emerald Coast released their third phase of grant money totaling $70,000 to 15 local non-profit organizations in Okaloosa and Walton counties from their COVID-19 Relief fund.  Since United Way began the COVID-19 relief grant process, they have provided a total of $140,000 back to 19 vetted local non-profits.

The 15 local non-profit organizations selected to receive funds include:

  • Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Northwest Florida
  • Boys and Girls Club of the Emerald Coast
  • Caterpillar 2 Butterfly Outreach Center
  • Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida
  • Children in Crisis
  • Early Learning Coalition of the Emerald Coast
  • Feeding the Gulf Coast
  • Fresh Start Children & Families
  • Homelessness and Housing Alliance
  • Mental Health Association
  • Okaloosa County Council on Aging
  • One Hopeful Place
  • Opportunity Place
  • S4P Synergy
  • The Salvation Army

May 19, 2020 – United Way Emerald Coast has released their second phase of grant money totaling $40,000 to seven local charities in Okaloosa and Walton Counties from their COVID19 Relief fund.  The charities were required to submit a COVID19 relief grant application in order to be considered for funds. Each charity will also be required to submit results, showcasing how the funds were able to directly impact the families and individuals their organizations support in the community. The seven local charities selected to receive funds include:

  • Boys and Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast
  • Bridgeway Center
  • Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida
  • Eleanor J. Johnson Youth Center
  • Feeding the Gulf Coast
  • Mental Health Association
  • The Salvation Army
Thank you to all who have donated to United Way’s COVID-19 Relief Fund!  United Way Emerald is proud to announce Phase 1 Grant recipients. These agencies were selected because of their expertise in their field. They will help us address immediate needs for food, shelter, and healthcare. These funds are intended to support our ALICE households – those who are facing financial instability and crisis situations because they lost their jobs or experienced reduced work hours because of this pandemic.
Phase 1 Grant Recipients
  • Feeding the Gulf Coast (food) – $5,000
  • Sharing & Caring (food) – $5,000
  • Catholic Charities of Northwest Florida (housing and utility assistance) – $5,000
  • Bridgeway Center (healthcare) – $5,000
  • Mental Health Association (healthcare) – $5,000
  • United Way Emerald Coast (emergency needs) – $5,000

United Way Emerald Coast (UWEC) envisions a healthy community for all residents and is greatly concerned about the local impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19).  UWEC is collaborating with a network of non-profits and community partners to identify the region’s most critical social service needs and mobilize support across Okaloosa and Walton counties. 

UWEC created the COVID-19 Relief Fund to support local community-based organizations that are providing services for individuals and families affected by the pandemic.  UWEC and its non-profit partners are on the front lines and these agencies are now facing an increased demand for services. Donations will support grants for UWEC’s non-profit partners who will offer essential safety-net services during the coming weeks. 

As schools close and businesses cut hours, many families will be faced with financial instability.  “We already have thousands of families living paycheck to paycheck and individuals who require assistance with basic needs.  Many of these households do not have an emergency savings and one missed paycheck can be catastrophic,” said UWEC CEO Kelly Jasen. 

UWEC has the systems in place to get the funds to the most affected people as quickly as possible with a minimum amount of red tape.  Contributions will help UWEC accelerate their work and rapidly deploy resources to ensure the most vulnerable members of our community are supported.  “By giving to the COVID-19 Relief Fund, you are helping agencies deliver invaluable services.  Your gift can help keep a family’s utilities on, fill an emergency prescription for a college student, supplement a veteran’s food supply, or provide a working mother with a few extra hours of childcare,” said Jasen.

Our neighbors need help – today and possibly for months to come.  UWEC Board Chair Dr. Alexis Tibbetts said, “During times of crisis, agencies are asked to do more with less staff and volunteer support.  Every donation and every volunteer hour matters.  It’s important that we work together to coordinate our efforts to ensure the most vulnerable families have the support they need.  This is our community, and this is our United Way.  Let’s each step up and play our part in building a healthier, stronger community.”

To donate to the COVID-19 Relief Fund, text UWECrelief to 41444, visit, or mail a check with COVID-19 in the memo line to United Way Emerald Coast, 112 Tupelo Ave, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548.

All grants will be publicly disclosed on within 10 days of grant award.

To volunteer, please visit

To connect with resources in our area, please contact Panhandle 211 by dialing 2-1-1, or 850-892-HELP (4357). 

Coronavirus Information Sources

The Florida Department of Health contains detailed information about coronavirus cases across the state as well as a COVID-19 toolkit with tip sheets including identifying your symptoms, how to limit exposure and prevent coronavirus and when to get tested.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, working to protect Americans from health, safety and security risks. The CDC is a valuable resource for coronavirus information including tracking cases across the U.S. and globally.

Dial 2-1-1 or call 850-892-HELP (4357) 24 hours, 7 days a week for additional help and support.  The Panhandle 2-1-1 website has information about Closures/Delays and other Special Resources regarding COVID-19: