Blue Hen Strong
May 15, 2020
Third annual I Heart UD Giving Day helps unite Blue Hen community and provide support
Together in spirit, Blue Hens around the country and the world showed their love for the University of Delaware community by connecting virtually on the third annual I Heart UD Giving Day, Wednesday, May 6. While supporters found themselves physically distant from one another on what has become a traditional day of championing causes close to their hearts, the core purpose of the giving day remained the same, its mission not interrupted but emboldened.
Faced with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, many in the UD community have been, and will continue to be, affected by unforeseen hardships. On this year’s I Heart UD Giving Day, more than 1,200 alumni, friends, faculty, staff, parents and students provided more than $188,000 in direct support for the greatest needs of UD. Blue Hens gave primarily in support of two new funds that will encourage success and help usher in a brighter future. The Blue Hen Strong Fund focuses on assisting students, while the COVID-19 Employee Emergency Relief Fund is for faculty and staff experiencing hardship.
“Eleni and I are incredibly heartened to see the tremendous generosity and encouragement of our Blue Hen community through I Heart UD Giving Day and the launch of the Blue Hen Strong and COVID-19 Employee Emergency Relief funds,” said UD President Dennis Assanis. “With UD leadership and our entire community, we are all working to help the members of our Blue Hen family who have been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our students are the leaders of tomorrow, and our faculty and staff are the mentors and resources who help guide them on their paths to success. Together, we can build a brighter future for our campus and our world with the support of our incredible community.”
The newly established Blue Hen Strong Fund will directly and immediately address the urgent needs of UD students to ensure their success at UD and beyond — providing success grants to help cover tuition, access to technology and advancements to online learning tools, career-readiness support and so much more. Additionally, the COVID-19 Employee Emergency Relief Fund will help alleviate the burden for UD faculty and staff experiencing temporary hardships.
I Heart UD Giving Day specifically encouraged donations to dramatically increase support available through these two funds, to help those who need the most support in this current moment. Helping propel the success of the giving day and further demonstrate the power of philanthropy were individual anonymous donors, as well as the UD Alumni Association, who stepped up throughout the day to provide significant matching funds.
With the generosity of those who gave through I Heart UD Giving Day, the University will have renewed resources to help students, faculty and staff overcome new financial burdens, health and wellness concerns, struggles related to career readiness and stress surrounding the new landscape of online learning.
Although the third annual Giving Day has now passed, and as UD community members look for support in the coming weeks and months ahead, the Blue Hen Strong and COVID-19 Employee Emergency Relief funds will remain open for additional gifts, continuing to inspire kindness and to provide much needed support.
“In recent weeks, stories of generosity and compassion have brought light into dark times. On I Heart UD Giving Day, the positive energy and philanthropy of the UD community truly generated incredible support that I hope will raise the spirits of all in our Blue Hen family,” said Jim Dicker, vice president of development and alumni relations. “We couldn’t be more grateful to all those who demonstrated their UD pride and shared their support, especially knowing the far-reaching impact of this pandemic across communities. Thanks to the power of philanthropy, we will be able to provide support for Blue Hens who need it during this uncertain time.”
Blue Hen Strong Fund
Gifts to the Blue Hen Strong Fund will directly and immediately help address the urgent needs of our UD students to ensure their success at UD and beyond — providing success grants to cover tuition, access to technology and advancements to online learning tools, career readiness support and so much more.
The University asks that you direct your support to the Blue Hen Strong Fund for the foreseeable future because our top priority is that our students not just manage this challenging time but thrive in the face of it.
For more information and to support the fund, visit the Blue Hen Strong Fund online.
COVID-19 Employee Emergency Relief Fund
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many UD faculty and staff members are experiencing temporary hardships. The COVID-19 Employee Emergency Relief Fund was established to help alleviate these burdens. Through grants up to $1,000, this fund will work to assist those facing financial struggles during this unprecedented time.
The grants will be awarded via an application process and the recipients will be identified by the Employee Emergency Relief Fund Committee. The fund will be managed by the Office of Human Resources.
For more information and to support the fund, visit the COVID-19 Employee Emergency Relief Fund online.
If you are an employee of the University and would like to apply for support from the fund, fill out this form.