March 13, 2020
Dear Members and Friends of the YANA Community:

We are reaching out to our broader network to remind everyone that YANA also stands for Y ou A re N ot A lone. YANA was formed ten years ago to create a community and forum for like-minded, mission-driven people who work in the social impact space. The kind of work many of you do on the front lines, with limited budgets, working with vulnerable populations, and tackling seemingly insurmountable social challenges, can be trying in the best of times. In the current chaotic climate, we want you to know that we continue to cheer you on, provide support and community in whichever format we can, and share resources and information from our extensive network.

Below, you will find some helpful (non-CDC/WHO health related) links for nonprofits, resources on what’s going on at Yale regarding students, and thoughts from the wider YANA community — including a chance to answer our survey about how the Coronavirus is affecting your work.

We were glad to see (though not surprised) from our survey that most of our YANA members are keeping up to date about the Coronavirus pandemic from first-hand reports on CDC and other governmental websites and emails. You can help others by staying calm and looking into and sharing original resources and facts.

For example, if you want to know how the neediest children in public schools continue to receive meals even if schools close, and how people in your community can find resources for immediate needs , check here .

If you are looking to provide or access local community assistance, start with your local nonprofit alliance organization ( search here ) or community organizations who will have the best handle on what the community’s immediate needs are. If you work for one of those organizations, please let us know how YANA and its wider network can help. YANA Chapter leaders are also available to help collaborate with other local Yale clubs and groups to rally resources or other support if needed.

Expert info from the field for nonprofits — other than CDC and health related guidelines:


From Our Friends at 1stGenYale :

“By now, many of you have heard that Yale is paying for travel home for all students on financial aid to ensure the highest levels of safety as we navigate COVID-19. For detailed information of support, please read the Yale College FAQ information sent to students.

This is a tremendous gesture to safeguard the well being of all of our community members, but also a significant and unexpected cost to the budget. Many alums have asked how they can be helpful and supportive at this time. 

1stGenYale is working with the Office of Development to support our students at this critical time. Because all student needs will be accommodated, please consider making a gift to SafetyNet , the Yale fund that helps support emergency funding for Yale College students on financial aid. Yale students really need your help here. You can also make a direct gift to the SafetyNet fund at Giving to Yale: SafetyNet . If you have questions, please contact Alison Cole ’99, Director of Development for Yale College .

If you are interested in supporting FirstGenLowIncome students at less-resourced colleges and universities, check out The Hope Center and this plea for emergency funding help from a small but powerful RI-based college access and support program, College Visions .

Dwight Hall Having spoken with our contacts at Dwight Hall (Yale’s Center for Public Service and Social Justice), we were told that funding is not the issue right now. They feel comfortable that both they and the University have sufficient funds to help staff and students get through the immediate crisis. There is, however, some uncertainty about shifting expectations for student placements and nonprofit work for the remainder of the semester and for the summer. They will be reaching out to students and their community partner organizations to explore ways to adjust volunteer work. Many students also have plans or expectations about summer placements, which may require some creative adjustment in where and how good and important social impact work can be done. We offered to solicit the YANA network to see if any nonprofits might have immediate or possible summer remote projects that might be of interest and availability to Yale students should the need arise. There is space in the survey linked below for your thoughts. 

If you love the work that Dwight Hall does and the hundreds of students they support for social impact learning and work you should certainly consider donating to them . If you want to help support Yale students this summer in the social impact space who would not otherwise have funding, then please support the YANA-Dwight Hall Fellowship .
The YANA Community

  • Please take a few minutes to complete the survey linked below, designed by YANA New England Chapter Leadership member Joellyn Gray SOM ‘81, and already shared with our New England and New York chapters. Your responses and insight will help us monitor and provide support to our mission-driven organizations as we navigate these changing times.
  • We have taken steps to convert this month’s NYC chapter meeting on 3/25 at the Yale Club into a Zoom session (login info below & listed on the meeting page). We are inviting nonprofit leaders to share their thinking on how to weather the crisis, e.g. dealing with funding cuts, layoffs, and canceled fundraisers. We are now opening this chapter meeting to the ENTIRE YANA COMMUNITY. So if you want to listen in to what others in the space are doing or share your concerns or best practices, please join us!
Thank you for taking time to read this letter and for being part of the YANA community. Your donations, volunteer hours, and on-the-ground day-to-day work for the greater good is appreciated and celebrated. Hang in there and stay in touch. We are here for you. Please feel free to share this letter and linked survey and resources with your own network.

Rachel Littman ‘91, YANA Executive Director
Join us for the
Yale Alumni Nonprofit Alliance NYC Chapter Monthly Meeting
March 25 | 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM EDT
* All are invited *
Zoom Meeting Link :

Meeting ID: 225 836 524

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