I’m Turning My Stimulus Check Into A “Personal Community Relief Fund”

I’m Turning My Stimulus Check Into A “Personal Community Relief Fund”

Austinites You Should Know

About The Author

Kara Wright is a native Texan, local nonprofit professional, conscious consumer, thoughtful human, and grateful guest on planet Earth. 

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If you're able, turn your stimulus check into a "personal community relief fund," spending and donating that money in order to support local businesses and nonprofit organizations.

I’m one of the lucky ones…


I’m healthy, financially-secure, employed, and “banked.” Same with my friends. Same with our siblings. Same with their friends… So here we are, Zooming while our bank accounts receive FREE MONEY. 


Tysm. #blessed


So while many of us are being paid out equally, how we spend that money could ensure that our broader community is benefitted equitably.


Here are 4 highly recommended steps for thoughtful stimulus check spending…


Calculate and deduct your personal COVID-19 expenses.

You’re probably experiencing quarantine-related costs like increased energy use (about 20% for residential Austin Energy customers), building a home office, changes in loan payment affordability, or loss of employer-sponsored meals. Tally and subtract those expenses from your government-issue amount to calculate your  “Personal Community Relief Fund.”


Piggy bank for take-out treats.

(30% of your “Personal Community Relief Fund) Keep celebrating your weekends and special occasions by continued patronage to your favorite local eateries. 

Support the news sources and podcasts that keep you going.

(30% of your “Personal Community Relief Fund) You’re probably more tuned in now than ever, and they’re busier now than ever.

Donate to a cause you care about.

(40% of your “Personal Community Relief Fund)  Here’s a non-comprehensive list of local groups accepting donations.

    1. Live Music- Banding Together is an initiative headlined by Red River Cultural District to support the diverse range of individuals that keep Austin’s live music scene running

    2. Ethical Fashion- Open Arms Studio is a living-wage sew shop for local brands and has recently pivoted to meet PPE mask demands 

    3. Nightlife- The Service Industry Tip Jar helps you donate directly to the bartenders, servers, and hosts you know, love, and miss.

    4. Green Spaces- Austin Parks Foundation manages improvements and programs of well-known outdoor spaces across the city

    5. Female Empowerment- Dress for Success helps women transition to stable careers and lifestyles

    6. Art and Culture- Artists Emergency Relief Fund provides personal and financial stability to local artists who have lost work

    7. Local Food and Agriculture- Sustainable Food Center who typically organizes your favorite farmers markets is working hard to keep local food available and accessible

    8. Entrepreneurship- Stand with Austin was originally built to help those recovering from the SXSW cancellation but continues to provide aid. 

    9. Financial Relief and Resource Aid- COVID-19 Relief Fund provides financial and material aid to families and individuals in need

Stay weird. Stay home.

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