The COVID-19 pandemic has brought new focus to the need to support college students’ basic needs to improve their success obtaining degrees. As campuses across the country shut down, thousands of students found themselves without shelter, food, and income. Unfortunately, federal, state and local governments have yet to provide sufficient resources to support students’ ability to meet their basic needs. Bureaucracy and politics contribute to insufficient funding, which in turn exacerbates inequality. All students deserve access to nutritionally adequate and safe food or the ability to acquire such food in a socially acceptable manner; a safe, affordable and consistent place to live should not be considered a luxury.
This guide aims to support philanthropists seeking to make equitable, high-impact investments to support students’ basic needs during this critical time.