First National in Omaha creates flood fund

First National Bank of Omaha, a division of First National of Nebraska, has partnered with Nebraska Community Foundation to create the Rebuild the Heartland Community Fund for those impacted by recent flooding.

The fund will help with recovery and rebuilding efforts in communities across the region that have been impacted by the historic flooding, announced Clark D. Lauritzen, chairman and president.

First National Bank has contributed $100,000 to establish the fund and has pledged to match up to $150,000 in additional donations to Rebuild the Heartland, he said.  One hundred percent of all contributions to the Rebuild the Heartland Community Fund will be deployed in the flood-affected areas.

The Rebuild the Heartland Community Fund encourages recovery and rebuilding efforts across Nebraska, western Iowa, and southeastern South Dakota. As such, funds raised will be awarded to nonprofit organizations leading recovery and rebuilding efforts in communities impacted by the floods.

Rebuilding and recovery activities could include, but not be limited to, support for nonprofit organizations working to address one of the following:

  • Implementing community development solutions such as housing, neighborhood revitalization, or small business assistance
  • Addressing and improving health and human services needs
  • Cleaning up and protecting natural and environmental resources
  • Strengthening infrastructure critical to a healthy community

Lauritzen said the Rebuild the Heartland Community Fund will implement its activities in two phases.  Initially, the Fund will focus on generating contributions to support the efforts described above. Its second phase will involve deploying funding to qualified nonprofit organizations.  The specific process for granting funds will be outlined in the coming weeks, he said.

“At First National Bank of Omaha, we applaud and support the various disaster response organizations working right now to deal with the devastation this flooding has caused,” said Alec Gorynski, vice president of community development and corporate philanthropy at the $23 billion bank.  “Our efforts here are intended to be additive to the response. By establishing and seeding this fund, we hope to provide even more resources to the long-term rebuilding needs that these communities are now facing.”

Contributions to the Rebuild the Heartland Community Fund may be made on its website or via check payable to Nebraska Community Foundation, P.O. Box 83107, Lincoln, NE  68501. Memos on donation checks should read “Rebuild the Heartland.”

First National isn’t the only financial institution working to support impacted farmers. The Nebraska Bankers Association also created a disaster relief fund to help those affected.