Guide to Giving 2020

These local nonprofits are providing support to those hit hardest by the pandemic. Here's how you can support them.

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia

The Literacy Council of Northern Virginia teaches adults the basic skills of reading, writing, speaking and understanding English so they can access employment and educational opportunities and more fully and equitably participate in the community. Adhering to social distancing guidelines, LCNV is now providing live-streamed group instruction with interactive and whiteboard capabilities. Individuals with technology limitations may also receive instruction through one-to-one phone calls or assignments that are emailed or texted and then returned for teacher feedback.

Headquartered: Falls Church
Serves: Northern Virginia
What a donation provides:
❱❱ $85 provides a student scholarship.
❱❱ $100 trains two volunteer instructors.
❱❱ $500 supports five families in LCNV’s Family Learning Program.
❱❱ $1,000 provides a distance learning opportunity to 22 students.
❱❱ $10,000 covers an intensive survival and job readiness literacy class for 10 refugee women.
Volunteer opportunities: Under normal circumstances, volunteer teachers lead classroom instruction two to three times a week per three-month semester. Class aides support learners in the classroom once or twice a week. Tutors provide supplemental instruction before or after class. Assessment specialists assess learners for appropriate program placement and measure their progress six times a year. Others help with class registration, outreach, office tasks and special projects.

New Hope Housing

New Hope Housing serves more than 1,600 people a year by providing shelter, rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing, support services and outreach programs for homeless individuals across Northern Virginia. In 2019, the nonprofit helped rehouse more than 400 people. New Hope works to end the cycle of homelessness by offering the services people need to change their lives. Covid-19 has produced an immediate need for food, clothing and personal protective equipment. However, organizers anticipate that the biggest needs will soon be funds for rental assistance and security deposits to stave off evictions in the fall.

Headquartered: Fairfax County
Serves: Alexandria, Arlington, Falls Church and Fairfax
What a donation provides:
❱❱ $250 provides a new bed for someone moving out of homelessness.
❱❱ $1,000 subsidizes a month of housing for a formerly homeless individual.
❱❱ $10,000 provides up to 30 employment scholarships allowing recipients to obtain certifications needed for better employment opportunities.
Volunteer opportunities: Volunteers can still assist with meal preparation and delivery, tutoring, résumé writing, job search assistance and virtual game nights. Organizers hope to soon reenlist volunteers for building repairs and maintenance, landscaping, yard work and office tasks. Commitments can be one-time or ongoing. Internships are available for students focusing on careers in social services or communications and marketing.

OAR of Arlington, Alexandria and Falls Church

OAR works with participants of all genders who are returning to the community from incarceration. The nonprofit works to ensure a safe reentry, offering alternative sentencing options to youth and adults to reduce incarceration through community service. It also seeks to promote equity in the legal system and in society as a whole by addressing systemic injustices created by racism.

Headquartered: Arlington
Serves: Arlington County, the City of Alexandria and the City of Falls Church
What a donation provides:
❱❱ $100 provides pro-social activities for five participants recently released from incarceration.
❱❱ $250 provides ID retrieval for at least six participants, which is needed to secure housing and employment.
❱❱ $500 provides up to three months of case management for one participant.
❱❱ $1,000 provides up to one month of transportation for up to 15 participants.
❱❱ $2,500 provides up to a year’s worth of reentry services for one participant.
❱❱ $10,000 covers the cost of one part-time employment specialist for one year.

Phoenix Bikes

Phoenix Bikes educates youth, promotes bicycling and builds community through its full-service bike shop on Columbia Pike. Its free, year-round Earn-a-Bike program teaches bike repair basics to youth ages 12-17, and enables them to earn a bike for themselves. The youth programs are currently suspended, but the organization is looking into restarting some classes online.

Headquartered: Arlington
Serves: D.C. metro area
What a donation provides:
❱❱ $20 provides a new floor pump for youth learning how to fix flat tires.
❱❱ $40 provides one U-lock and helmet for an Earn-a-Bike program graduate.
❱❱ $150 provides new cables (for shifting and braking) for 15 Earn-a-Bike students.
Volunteer opportunities: Check the website for updates as social distancing restrictions are lifted.

Categories: Community