SELLS, Ariz. (KVOA) - On Monday, the Tohono O'odham Nation announced it is giving $1 million each to the University of Arizona and Arizona State University to help researchers combat the COVID-19 coronavirus.
The funds come from the Tohono O'odham Nation's 12 percent gaming revenue grant program that is required under its compact to share with local communities.
“This virus is showing no signs of letting up, and until we have better testing, treatment, and a vaccine, our communities remain at risk and our economy will continue to falter. That is why the Nation made the decision to contribute these funds – which we were already committed to share – to support the world-class research taking place right here in Arizona that is working to overcome the pandemic," said Tohono O'odham Nation Chairman Ned Norris Jr.
The funds are intended to help each university mitigate the consequences of COVID-19 through things such as new testing methods and deployment of emerging technologies.
"The University of Arizona is proud to partner with the Tohono O'odham Nation, particularly as our main campus is located on their ancestral homelands,” said University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins, "As Arizona's land-grant university, our mission is to serve the entire state, and the Nation’s support will allow this work to continue and expand, and help Arizona emerge stronger from this pandemic."