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News Release
Portland Foundation delivers $43,000 in Covid-related Emergency Assistance to Local Musicians - 05/06/20

PORTLAND, Ore. Following the March launch of a special donor-directed COVID-19 Oregon Musicians’ Relief Fund, the Jeremy Wilson Foundation (JWF) awarded emergency grants to 86 local artists and music industry workers impacted by canceled performances. 

The JWF, a 501(c)3 musicians’ health and services organization, created this targeted fund in response to the significant financial hardship created by unprecedented venue closings and performance cancellations due to COVID-19. Between March 14 and April 22, more than 500 music lovers donated to the special campaign, including local businesses like Koll Guitars and Misplaced Screen Printing. $43,000 in available emergency assistance was distributed equally among eligible applicants by the end of April.

The music community banded together to raise awareness of the JWF’s work in its own unique way. Bass player and producer Jack Mortensen brought together more than 30 local musicians to remotely record a performance of Marvin Gaye’s “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” that garnered local and national media attention and inspired thousands of dollars in donations to the fund. Online concerts and special offers from rock violinist Aaron Meyer, performer Sydney Nash, musician, and artist Janet Julian, the Alberta Rose Theatre, and others all provided invaluable support.

Recently, Chris Funk of the Decemberists announced that all profits from Bandcamp sales of his new album The Painted Porch would be donated to the JWF’s COVID-19 Oregon Musicians’ Relief Fund. 

“I first learned about the Jeremy Wilson Foundation two and a half years ago, when I broke my ankle, right before Christmas,” said Nash. “The JWF not only provided material support for me to pay my rent and bills when I was on crutches and couldn't play gigs or do side work of any kind but way, more importantly, they helped me with the applications to get on the Oregon Health Plan. The positivity that has grown from the seed of help that the JWF planted in my life has bloomed into an entirely different existence than I ever thought possible. I am so grateful for the help that they showed me that I was eager to return the favor so that they could be there for other musicians like me down the line who can benefit from this kind of support. It is truly, no hyperbole, life-changing.” 

In addition to financial assistance, the JWF offers volunteer social work services to local musicians, ensuring they can successfully navigate the healthcare system and qualify for available government benefits. The organization has also compiled a list of additional support made possible by state and federal relief organizations, which can be accessed on the foundation’s website.

Understanding that the global crisis will continue to impact the financial stability of working musicians and music industry professionals, the JWF is evaluating future fundraising efforts and anticipates opening up a second application cycle for assistance in the near future. Donors interested in supporting this work can contribute directly to the JWF’s emergency assistance fund through its GoFundMe campaign. Donations can also be made through checks made out to the Jeremy Wilson Foundation (memo: COVID-19 Oregon Musicians’ Relief Fund) and sent to The Jeremy Wilson Foundation, 1028 SE Water Ave, Ste 230, Portland, Ore. 97214. 

About the Jeremy Wilson Foundation: The Jeremy Wilson Foundation (JWF) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit musicians' health and service organization. Their mission is to support the hard-working musicians of Oregon and Clark County, Wash., through medical emergencies. Through the JWF Musicians’ Emergency Healthcare Fund, musicians and their dependents can receive financial assistance when faced with a medical crisis. The JWF also offers licensed social worker services to help recipients access additional state or federal aid and navigate the complex healthcare system. For more information, visit