Pakis Family Foundation approves over $1.1 million in support of local COVID-19 relief efforts and business support

Posted By on April 29, 2020
The Pakis family, with Fred Pakis pictured in center.

The Pakis Family Foundation, a supporting organization of the Arizona Community Foundation, distributed a total of $1,150,000 through their recent grant cycle.

The grants were in response to the COVID-19 crisis and the immediate needs for financial support to assist the most pressing needs in the community. The aid will support more than 22 nonprofits providing COVID-19 crisis relief efforts.

The Foundation distributed a majority of the aid to organizations supporting food distribution, healthcare, and shelter services. These organizations have seen their demand for services increase as COVID-19 takes a toll on families and workers across the state. Not to mention all of the businesses who have not only lost income from paying customers but have also lost human resources as their employees are at home suffering from the illness or, even worse, have sadly passed away from the virus. Many businesses do have insurance, such as the Key Man Insurance that can be found here, that can help them with financial woes, however with this virus being so unpredictable, businesses and families need as much support as possible. The Foundation also granted TGen Foundation $50,000 to expand the needed testing for COVID-19 in Arizona.

Through this grant cycle, the Pakis Family Foundation also approved direct relief to organizations supporting the needs of small businesses through this crisis. Of the total granted, $150,000 was distributed to organizations such as Local First AZ, a nonprofit which supports and advocates for local and small businesses in the state, and the Arizona Partnership for Economic Innovation, which promotes long-term, research-led investments in order to transform Greater Phoenix into a world-class business and innovation hub. 

The Pakis Family Foundation granted the remaining $875,000 to organizations providing direct relief to different populations of Arizonans facing financial hardship, including veterans, domestic violence survivors, and homeless individuals and families.

More than $257,000 in grants went to organizations that provide human services, housing, and healthcare to Arizona’s homeless population. One of these organizations, Elaine, connects homeless individuals to health care through primary care resources and physical transportation, the latter being a significant hurdle in accessing preventative care and decreasing E.R. trips. Elaine is one example of the wide array of innovative approaches funded by the Pakis Family Foundation to address the needs of Arizona’s communities.

Fred Pakis, a philanthropic leader in the community, understands the importance of business philanthropy and supported the creation of the Pakis Center for Business Philanthropy at ACF.  In this grant cycle, his family foundation distributed a $75,000 grant to the Pakis Center for Business Philanthropy.

“When we recognize innovation and multi-dimensional solutions in corporate and community endeavors, we maximize Arizona’s possibilities for success,” Pakis shared. “If we plan for long-term solutions now, we can ensure we do not leave behind community-members, small business owners, or those on the front-lines of this crisis.”

This round of grants from the Pakis Family Foundation is part of a larger effort from the Arizona Community Foundation totaling more than $6 million in COVID-19 relief grants from ACF, corporate donors, supporting organizations, and individual fundholders. 

The Pakis Family Foundation was established in 1996 by Fred Pakis to encourage intergenerational grantmaking by the Pakis family. Fred Pakis co-founded Scottsdale-based JDA Software in 1985 and previously served on the Board of Directors for the Arizona Community Foundation.

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