We’ll Get Through This Together

Dear friends,

Sometimes a new season calls for new actions. We’ve never seen a season quite like this one, and while we don’t know all that it is going to bring for us and our community, we’re moving quickly to adjust our strategies and our ways of working. What isn’t changing is our commitment to making our communities more whole.

On Friday, March 20, the San Antonio Area Foundation announced a COVID-19 Response Fund with an initial value of $2.7 million—you can read all about it in this Rivard Report story. We are honored to contribute to that fund with local partners to support the city’s nonprofit organizations who are on the front lines of serving those hit hardest by this disaster. We’ve come to know and love many of these organizations in recent years, and we believe strongly in their work. If you can support the effort, donate $25 or more at www.helpsatx.org or text HELPSATX to 41444.

We’ve also made a donation to the Community Foundation of the Texas Hill Country to help address emergency needs in Kerr and Real Counties. The Hill Country Strong Fund will form an advisory committee to make grants to organizations supporting individuals and communities. Again, you can support the effort by donating $25 or more at www.communityfoundation.net. And be on the lookout for something similar happening in your community.

Foundation employees are mostly working from home, and everyone is able to respond to emails and calls. In fact, our teams are hard at work rethinking how to express our mission in this uncertain time. In keeping with the CDC’s guidance on limiting groups of more than 50, the Canyon and its programs are on hiatus through mid-May, and we’ve been in touch with the families and organizations impacted by those closures to provide full refunds. But we’re also looking further down the calendar.

We’re not ready to make a call about what happens this summer. Our hope is to host kids and families and to run retreats at Laity Lodge, but we will be in touch as we monitor reports and recommendations coming from the CDC and Texas Health and Human Services. In the meantime, we’ve extended payment plans to give families a break from one more bill at this time.

This is not a time for shrinking from our mission of cultivating wholeness in people and institutions. Each of our teams is at the drawing board, discovering their way forward and determining how to serve the families, children, and communities in our region. That’s true for all the programs we operate—the camps and retreats in the Canyon and Community Engagement work in Real County and San Antonio.

Our mission is unchanged, as is our commitment to our communities. We’ll get through this together.


David Rogers
H. E. Butt Foundation