Additional $2.7 million in Emergency Food Relief Grant Funds Available

Published on September 14, 2021

Funding applications open to nonprofit organizations providing groceries and meals to Denver residents in need of food as a result of COVID-19 

To continue to ensure that residents have access to healthy, nourishing food, the Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE) today announced an additional $2.7 million in funding from the Denver Emergency Food Relief Fund (DEFRF) to support community-based nonprofit organizations that provide meals and groceries to Denver residents facing food insecurity due to the ongoing and widespread impacts of COVID-19.

The DEFRF helps nonprofit organizations, including food pantries, faith-based organizations, and emergency food providers, distribute food to Denver residents who are food insecure. These organizations have seen anywhere from double to 10 times the number of individuals and families accessing their food services since the start of the pandemic. Food insecurity has surged above the pre-pandemic rate of 11% and is estimated currently at approximately a third of the city’s population.

"We are committed to serving under-resourced communities and Denver residents affected by the COVID-19 virus,” said DDPHE Executive Director Bob McDonald. “We are excited to make more funding available and for ongoing opportunities to collaborate with nonprofit organizations providing groceries and meals to those who are hungry in our city.”

DEFRF was initially established in 2020 with Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and. Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to meet hunger and food insecurity needs in our neighborhoods and communities. To date, the DEFRF has provided approximately 2 million meals for individuals needing food in Denver and $2,901,128 has been awarded to food pantries  and community organizations in every City Council District to feed hungry Denver residents. 

Grants from this fund will continue to aid organizations primarily serving communities in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods with higher rates of food insecurity, including Elyria- Swansea, Globeville, North East Park Hill, East Colfax, West Colfax, Montbello, Sun Valley, Valverde, Villa Park, West Colfax, Westwood, College View South, Lincoln Park, Barnum, Athmar Park, and Goldsmith. Funds will also support nonprofits that provide food to vulnerable populations including under-resourced or historically marginalized groups such as communities of color, people experiencing poverty or homelessness, immigrants and refugees, LBGTQ, and veterans in all neighborhoods.

Grants will be open for application beginning September 14, 2021, and are expected to close on September 28, 2021. For more information about the grant and how to apply, visit

Questions can be directed to Marion Kalb at the Denver Department of Health and the Environment at, or 720-865-5511.