Supporting Essential Employees Through the COVID-19 NBA Response Grant

Woodhaven, Columbia, MO
COVID-19 NBA Response Grantee

When the system works, we hardly notice it in motion. Each morning, we get up and we move through our day, relying on systems that hold the fabric of our world together, without really knowing they are there. But when the systems that make our lives move forward come to a halt or breakdown entirely, we are left scrambling to figure out how to keep the momentum of our lives going.

The day local government announced schools would close and everything would go virtual was a hard day at Woodhaven. Many of our employees, from the main office to our individual home sites, have young families and rely on the stability and availability of schools and childcare to keep working.

The nature of our ministry requires the physical presence of our team. Remote work simply isn’t an option. People’s lives rely on our team being physically present consistently. While so many in our city and across the country have enjoyed the luxury of remote work, our team has scrambled to find childcare so that they can keep their jobs.

“My kids can’t just sit at home because school is closed. They are too young and family isn’t nearby to help. When you are already living paycheck to paycheck, an unexpected cost like this is a lot to face,” said Jen*. “What am I supposed to do?”
With schools closed, many of our employees were faced with the very real prospect of choosing their families or having a job. But, thanks to the funds received through the COVID-19 NBA Response Grant, we were able to help relieve some of the burden of unexpected childcare expenses for 27 employees.

“It was nice to have it acknowledged by my employer how expensive childcare is,” said Melanie*. “It was helpful for our family and gave us a little extra peace of mind.”
We know that we can’t help everyone with everything, but being able to help some of our employees who needed the most support during these challenging times has been a great joy. We look forward to finding other ways to support, empower and encourage our team during this ongoing pandemic and are so grateful for the way NBA has made it possible for our organization.

*names have been changed to protect privacy

Woodhaven is a community that works to help adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Their community is located in Columbia, Missouri. 

As the health and social services general ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the National Benevolent Association partners with congregations, regions, general ministries, and a variety of Disciples-related health and social service providers to create communities of compassion and care. Founded in 1887 by six women responding to the needs of the day and on their doorsteps, for more than 130 years the NBA has continued to serve “the least of these.” Learn more at