MANY THANKS to these generous sponsors!

Big Bend is beloved by Texans for its beautiful landscapes and eclectic people, but the COVID-19 pandemic is devastating this region’s tourism-dependent economy and straining its limited resources. Big Bend Citizens Alliance–a non-profit organization with volunteers from Alpine, Terlingua, Marathon, and Lajitas–started the Big Bend COVID-19 Pandemic Relief Fund to help Brewster County residents recover from these hardships.

Flattening the curve in the Big Bend region meant flattening the economy. More than a quarter of our population depends on the tourism industry, which has shut down to slow down the pandemic’s spread here. Mandatory and voluntary closures have hurt mostly hourly and tipped service workers who live paycheck to paycheck. Bartenders, restaurant and hotel workers, tour guides, park employees, hairdressers, massage therapists, retail salespeople, artists, musicians, and college students are suddenly out of work.

To help Brewster County’s most vulnerable residents, the relief fund will give to local organizations that meet basic needs like food and shelter. We will also give funds directly to people who fall through gaps in other programs, such as service workers who still have bills to pay while they wait to qualify for unemployment and other benefits.

Community-driven grants to help local residents

“We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the help. We have never before in our lives needed to receive help from anyone. We usually are the ones giving help to our employees, family, friends, and even strangers.”

As the pandemic and economic crises evolve, we will adjust our allocation of funding to meet the greatest needs in our communities and to complement available assistance programs. We will use a points-based system to prioritize where funding will have the greatest impact. Check out our Donor FAQ and Applicant FAQ for more information about this process. The amount we can give every month depends on donations received.

Our website also offers a directory of resources for people needing support during the pandemic. People can browse by the kind of help they need or search for a specific group or program. We will also share volunteer opportunities for anyone that wants to help local organizations and relief efforts.

Check back regularly for updates about our fundraising efforts and the help we’re providing Brewster County.

PLEASE CONTRIBUTE TODAY and help the Big Bend heal as a community. The more funding we receive, the more people we can help, and the sooner we can welcome back everyone who treasures the landscapes and people of the Big Bend.