At the end of February, our board approved the single largest expansion of funding since our founding in 2011, strengthening our ability to help more children access Catholic schools than ever before. Two weeks later, on March 15, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz ordered the closure of all schools following growing concerns about the spread of COVID-19.
Three days later, we awarded scholarships to more than 1,600 students to attend a Catholic school for the 2020-21 school year. The tuition assistance will help us support nearly 500 more children than we were able to last year at this time, providing an infusion of funds to families ands schools facing uncertain futures.
While we do not yet understand the full impact of COVID-19 on the children and families of this community, we remain focused and committed to ensure that all children can enroll—and stay enrolled—in a Catholic school. Below are several other initiatives:
MORE WAYS WE ARE HELPING
The Reserve Fund Scholarship
$1,000 tuition-assistance scholarships to remain enrolled in a Catholic school.
Throughout the school year, we offer school leaders the opportunity to apply for scholarships from our Reserve Fund on behalf of the students they serve. The fund provides a limited number of $1,000 Aim Higher Scholarships to K-8 students whose families experience sudden and unxpected financial hardship.
The goal of the scholarship is to help families keep their children enrolled in their Catholic school through 8th-grade when they face an unanticipated barrier to paying their tuition obligation.
In response to COVID-19, we have increased the number of scholarships available from the Reserve Fund and streamlined the application for school leaders.
MORE WAYS WE ARE HELPING
Summer Scholarship Application Cycle
More Scholarships. More Students. Stronger Schools.
The medical and economic distress presented by the COVID-19 pandemic will heighten the need for financial aid for parents seeking to ensure their children receive the many proven benefits of a Catholic education.
Each summer, we provide an additional round of scholarships for children from disadvantaged families who were unable to apply in the spring. We remain steadfast in our commitment to providing these funds to those disproportionately affected by the crisis.
HOW TO MAKE A GIFT
Choose how you would like to make an impact.
Learn how our partners are stepping up to help Catholic schools and parishes across the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.
Minnesota Catholic Relief Fund
Catholic parishes and schools are facing unprecedented challenges both financially and operationally. And while some are financially positioned to endure the COVID‑19 crisis, others are not as fortunate.
The Minnesota Catholic Relief Fund (MCRF) is an emergency relief fund designed to meet the urgent needs of our most financially vulnerable Catholic parishes and schools during the COVID‑19 pandemic.
CSAF Designated Ministries
Throughout COVID-19, the Catholic Services Appeal Foundation will be offering support to ministries within the Catholic church that are experiencing increased need of assistance. These include:
- Catholic schools
- Hospital chaplains
- The St. Vincent de Paul Society and Catholic Charities
During the school year, CSAF provides funding for 400 tuition-assistance scholarships, administered and granted by the Aim Higher Foundation.
REMAINING FOCUSED ON OUR Mission
Aim Higher Foundation staff and board members are involved at many levels of the community’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As we respond to the call to assist, we will update this space with pertinent information on what steps we are taking to help more children access a Catholic education and how you might get involved.