COVID-19 Statement

Dear friend,

Many alumni are wondering how they can help students cope with financial burdens during the University of Virginia’s COVID-19 containment efforts. UVA was one of the first institutions in the state to send students home to finish their semester online. As you might have guessed, some LGBTQ students are now in vulnerable positions—regardless of their ability to go home to their families. I remember being unable to return home after coming out, and the financial burden that posed in the best of circumstances. During this period of economic uncertainty, even more students will face impossible choices about how to weather this storm.

You can make a difference by contributing to the Serpentine Society’s Student Hardship Fund.

The Serpentine Society Board of Directors began working on this fund last year to provide emergency assistance for immediate financial need, identified with the help of the University’s LGBTQ Center. We established the fund to formalize the work we were already doing on an ad-hoc basis for a handful of students each year, helping them stay enrolled and focused on school by unencumbering them from short-term financial entanglements. When we established the fund, we didn’t anticipate the widespread upheaval associated with COVID-19. For those who wish to provide students with financial assistance, we have added the Hardship Fund to our donations page now until exams end on May 8, 2020 to increase capacity to meet this need.

Here are a few ways contributions to the fund could have an impact during the crisis:

  • $75: Keep internet and electricity current for a student finishing the semester at home
  • $150: Provide safer transportation to essential services for the rest of the semester
  • $400: Secure groceries for a newly food-insecure student for the rest of the semester
  • $1,000: Help a student stay current on their rent payments in Charlottesville
  • $2,800: Cover a student’s UVA-administered health insurance for the year

If you have any questions about the fund or would like information about this and other resources currently available to students at the University of Virginia, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Thank you for supporting students during this difficult time.

Very truly yours,

Brendan Maupin Wynn
Board Chair
brendan@serpentinesociety.org

We appreciate the support you have given to Serpentine, you can donate online, via phone or by mail.

If you prefer to make a gift over the phone, please contact the UVA Fund at 434-924-7018 or email gpsuva@virginia.edu

Mail to: University of Virginia Fund
Attn: Serpentine Society
P.O. Box 400314
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4314
Check Memo: FSER101, 01585

View PDF of letter here.