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Local agencies receive grants to aid pursuit of SCIP goals

March 17, 2013|By BRAD SELL and MELISSA REABOLD

Editor’s note: United Way and the Community Foundation of Washington County are writing monthly columns in The Herald-Mail to keep the Strategic Community Impact Plan (SCIP) process in the forefront of the community’s conscience and to report on the progress that is being made toward the SCIP goals.

The Community Foundation’s annual unrestricted grants were awarded last month and, once again, the grant applications were specifically tied to the SCIP goals and strategies.

Distributions from the following funds make up the foundation’s unrestricted grants: the Community Endowment Fund, the Waltersdorf Community Fund, the Phoebe Steffey Community Fund, The Washco Community Fund and the Pauline Anderson Pass Thru Fund.

The $100,825 in available funding was distributed to 24 agencies, with grants ranging from $325 to $12,500. According to the SCIP goals, here is how the funding was allocated: Health Goals (Nos. 22, 23, 24 and 25), $29,000; Older Adult Goals (Nos. 26, 27 and 28), $8,500; Family Safety and Security Goals (Nos. 20 and 21), $9,000; Education Goals (Nos. 1-8), $29,825; Self-Sufficiency Goals (Nos. 30 and 31), $3,000; Disability Goal (No. 15), $12,500; and Arts Culture Goals (Nos. 10 and 11), $9,000.

Nine organizations received funding to address six of the eight education goals identified in the SCIP document. They are: Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Boys & Girls Club, Girls Inc., QCI Behavioral Health, Rotary Foundation, Community Action Council, Washington County Family Center, Washington County Free Library and the YMCA.

The largest single goal area to receive funding from the Community Foundation was Education Goal No. 7, which states “All students will have access to social and emotional support and physical and mental health services.” Big Brothers/Big Sisters and the Community Action Council received this funding. An example of one of the Improvement Objectives regarding this goal is to develop partnerships to offer nutrition programs when school is out of session.

There was also a great emphasis placed on Goal No. 23 in the health category: “Decrease personal barriers that prevent residents from accessing quality health care services.” The Community Free Clinic and the Walnut Street Health Center shared in these grants. Organizations receiving funding for three of the four health goals also included the W House, Community Action Council and Girls on the Run.

The Foundation Grants Committee decided to fully fund Arc of Washington County’s request to address Goal No. 15: “Increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities by 20 percent over the next five years.” This $12,500 grant will create an auto detailing workshop that will result in training and increased employment opportunities for Washington Countians with disabilities.

We hope that you will refer to the SCIP document or the website (www.strategicwashingtoncounty.org) to better understand the goals and strategies associated with these grants.

We are pleased with the response of the nonprofit community to the SCIP document in applying for these grants from the Community Foundation.  But the sobering reality is that the Community Foundation was only able to fund $100,825 of the $300,000 in requests from the agencies that applied. 

We look forward to working with other nonprofits, funders, government agencies and private donors in addressing these and other goals and strategies identified in the Strategic Community Impact Plan.

In the coming months, we expect to be able to provide many more examples of the SCIP document being put into action in our communities.  Everyone has a role in creating positive change in Washington County, and we look forward to working with you to make it happen.

Brad Sell is executive director of the Community Foundation of Washington County. Melissa Reabold is executive director of United Way of Washington County.

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