With One Email, This City Raised $11k for a Food Shelter During COVID-19


Sarah Henry, lead PIO for the City of Alameda Emergency Response Team, didn’t expect to make such a difference with the click of a button.

She and the City of Alameda Emergency Response Team are working diligently to keep their island community of 80,000 (just outside of San Francisco) informed and safe during COVID-19.

So, in the City’s weekly COVID-19 community email update, she included a call to action to support the Alameda Food Bank, which is grappling with a surge in demand since the pandemic impacted employment across the island community.

“The food bank went from serving 35 families per day to 450 families per day,” said Henry.

After putting the email together on a Sunday evening, Henry pressed send. 45 minutes later, the local food shelter reported that they’d received $11,000 in donations from the community.

“It was incredible!” said Henry. ”It really showed how engaged our community is — not only with the newsletter but also in helping one another through this time.”

The Sunday Night Email That Raised $11k

While the community deserves due credit for coming together, the email also deserves recognition. It’s well-written, organized, and aligns its call to action with a clear community need. But what sets it apart is its tone. The email’s local pride and compassion speak directly to the hearts of residents.

See the full email here >>

excerpt from Alameda email with title "How You Can Help" with instructions for donating to the local food shelter

An excerpt from the City of Alameda’s email, their second govDelivery email ever.

What’s also incredible is that the email was just the second one the City had ever sent using govDelivery. The City had recently purchased and started using the email software through a FastTrack implementation process.

What’s next? From here, Henry and the City of Alameda plan to build on the success they’ve found.

“We can expand on this success for sure. We have so many more services that need assistance right now,” said Henry.

Bringing It All Together

The pandemic is a global crisis, but the City of Alameda proves that local efforts can make all the difference in the world. Something as simple as noticing a need and elevating it to the community through an email newsletter is one easy way to make that difference.

Want to Set Up a Similar Email Program in Your Community?

Learn about the FastTrack govDelivery solution that the City of Alameda implemented. Learn more >>

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