NewsWe're Open


We're Open, Arizona: How nonprofits like Herozona are navigating the pandemic

Posted at 12:13 PM, Feb 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-12 14:13:18-05

PHOENIX — As many businesses have had to do, nonprofits have also had to adapt throughout the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Alan Powell, the founder of Herozona, an organization that helps veterans, first responders, and kids primarily in South Phoenix, said his organization has transitioned most of its in-person events to virtual events, often streaming them on Facebook Live.

They've also done a handful of drive-thru events to pass out turkeys over Thanksgiving and backpacks and school supplies ahead of the school year.

As the pandemic continues, he said the need from the people in South Phoenix has increased. One challenge he's noticed is that organizations and corporations that once had physical locations in the area where people could go, have closed.

At the same time, there is also less funding to go around, something that is much needed right now.

"It's a whole new day in the nonprofit circle," he said.

Still, his organization is working to expand its events and offerings to meet the needs of the community. For the kids in the neighborhood, his organization is looking to offer more sports and art programs to keep kids engaged during the school year, especially as some parks and amenities have closed, part of the safety measures during the pandemic.

He said more kids have taken an interest in poetry after seeing and listening to Amanda Gorman's performance at President Joe Biden's inauguration.

For more information or to donate, visit