PepsiCo Foundation Donates $2 Million for COVID-19 Screening, Testing, and Other Critical Services

Donation will contribute to the Children's Health Fund emergency response and recovery efforts in 21 communities

NEW YORK, NY (April 27, 2020) – As the U.S. continues to report record numbers of COVID-19 cases, healthcare facilities around the country are facing growing shortages of COVID-19 tests and personal protective equipment (PPE), leaving many communities without adequate screening and testing services and the medical equipment necessary to fight the pandemic. To increase access to critical testing and screening services, supplement existing PPE, and to support children and families who are facing economic challenges, lost learning, and overall insecurity as a result of the pandemic, Children’s Health Fund (CHF), a non-profit that has worked for over 30 years to provide health care to underserved children and families, launched the COVID-19 Community Emergency Response and Recovery Fund.

Salud Integral de la Montaña, a CHF-funded program in Puerto Rico, conducting mass community testing.

Launched with a $2 million contribution from The PepsiCo Foundation – the company’s philanthropic arm – the COVID-19 Community Emergency Response and Recovery Fund will help bolster the capacity of healthcare services by funding mobile clinics, drive-by testing facilities, telehealth, and other innovative mitigation strategies. It will also provide much-needed supplies for frontline healthcare workers, including PPE, specimen collection materials, and immediate financial support for salaries. Funding is being directed to communities where CHF already has a presence—areas that have historically faced economic and social barriers impacting their access to healthcare. 

“In our long history of responding to the health needs of resource-limited communities impacted by disasters, our response to COVID-19 is more expansive than anything we’ve undertaken,” said Dennis Walto, CHF CEO. “We are deeply grateful to The PepsiCo Foundation, whose support will make sure that frontline health workers have the resources and tools they need to ensure these families are not the last to be screened and tested and that our programs offer lifesaving services now and in the aftermath of this disaster.”  

The donation from The PepsiCo Foundation is helping activate response efforts in 21 locations in some of the nation’s hardest-hit cities, including New York City, Detroit, New Orleans and Dallas. In Dallas, CHF is working with Parkland Health & Hospital System to expand COVID-19 screenings to the city’s vulnerable populations by utilizing their HOMES (Homeless Medical Outreach Services) vans to help support drive-through testing sites in three locations with the capacity to test up to 1,250 adults each day cumulatively. In New Orleans, Children’s Health Fund is helping local healthcare providers scale up testing and screening, and provide telehealth services for non-COVID-related patients who still need critical healthcare.

“We are humbled to help CHF provide vital resources to help keep our neighbors and communities safe during COVID-19 as part of our global response effort,” said Jon Banner, executive vice president, Global Communications and president, PepsiCo Foundation. “CHF staff serves on the frontlines of community health and we commend their team and leadership for doing all they can to fight this pandemic.”

Recognizing that the devastating effects of COVID-19 will linger long past the peak of the virus, CHF’s COVID-19 Community Emergency Response and Recovery Fund will ensure that programs can continue to respond to the health needs of families who seek their care in the aftermath of this disaster.  This crisis has deeply affected the operations and viability of programs that are an essential part of the health infrastructure that millions of people living at the poverty level rely on across the country. Funds will provide financial support now to help stabilize these programs, keep care going for communities through telehealth/telemental services, and provide connections to community resources that can help with food, housing and other critical social needs as they struggle with the impact of this crisis.  The funds will also help continue medical care for newborns, provide support that addresses the mental health needs of children, and also help with lost wages and transportation for families served by Children’s Health Fund programs.

PepsiCo’s work with CHF is part of its more than $45 million COVID-19 relief effort globally, aimed at helping people and communities most affected by the virus. The company is providing vital support including protective gear for healthcare workers, testing and screening services, and is already in the process of distributing more than 50 million nutritious meals to at-risk populations by supporting food banks and other partners around the world.

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About Children’s Health Fund

Children’s Health Fund is a not-for-profit organization committed to the health and wellbeing of children and families who face great health disparities rooted in racial, social and economic inequities, and live in some of the most marginalized communities across the United States. The programs we support bring high-quality healthcare directly to children and families where they live, learn, and play; we partner with schools to address health barriers to learning, chronic absenteeism, and trauma-related behavioral issues; and we drive policy change that improves the quality of life for the communities we serve. Our network of 26 programs are located In 15 states, Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. Learn more at www.childrenshealthfund.org. 

About The PepsiCo Foundation  

Established in 1962, The PepsiCo Foundation, the philanthropic arm of PepsiCo, invests in the essential elements of a sustainable food system with a mission to support thriving communities. Working with non-profits and experts around the globe, we’re focused on helping alleviate hunger, managing water and waste responsibly and supporting women as champions of nutrition from farm to family. We strive for tangible impact in the places where we live and work—collaborating with industry peers, local and international organizations, and our employees to affect large-scale change on the issues that matter to us and are of global importance. Learn more at www.pepsico.com/sustainability/philanthropy.