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United Way of Hancock County Awards Grants to Local Agencies

The United Way of Hancock County board of directors approved grants during the monthly board meeting on Thursday, March 26. Funding was awarded to 26 programs offered by social service agencies throughout the county. Forty community leaders volunteered to serve on impact teams in the areas of education, income and health. Each impact team reviewed grant applications and recommended the distribution of United Way grant funds. The process includes an extensive review of program results while also looking at the most pressing needs of the community.

A full listing of grants provided out of funds raised by the 2014 United Way campaign is as follows:

Boy Scouts of America, Black Swamp Council was awarded $45,000 two programs: Boy Scouting program which promotes positive youth development that has a lasting impact on youth into young adulthood and throughout their life; and Exploring which includes preparing young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes and exploring career opportunities.

Camp Fire of Northwest Ohio was awarded $124,000 for two programs: the Camp Fire Contributes-Self Reliance program which includes teaching young people how to handle themselves in unsafe situations and how to be of service to their community; and the Camp Fire Connects-Outreach program which builds caring, confident youth and future leaders.

Cancer Patient Services was awarded $120,000 for its Patient Support program providing medical supplies, nutritional supplements, emotional support and education to cancer patients.

CASA/GAL of Hancock County was awarded $120,000 for its advocacy program which recruits, trains and supports volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocates as they represent children who are abused, neglected or dependent or are involved in domestic relations disputes.

Century Health was awarded $51,829 for its Peer-to-Peer program, a recovery focused direct service provided by Peer Support Specialists trained to advocate and support others struggling with mental illness and addiction recovery. Century Health also received an additional one-time grant from United Way board reserves of $12,500 to assist with the purchase of a van to transport residents of Tree Line Recovery Center to activities in the community.

Challenged Champions Equestrian Center was awarded $28,000 for its therapeutic riding program supporting residents of Hancock County with special needs, from early childhood to adulthood, and veterans through horseback riding and other horse related activities that promote physical, emotional and mental developments.

Children’s Mentoring Connection was awarded $96,300 for its Mentoring Youth at Risk program which recruits and screens adult volunteers to serve as mentors to children.

Findlay Family YMCA was awarded $91,000 for two programs: the Open Door Membership program which makes services accessible to low-income families while still requiring a financial contribution, allowing the family to take ownership and regard themselves as a contributing member to the YMCA and community; and the child care program which provides educational, social and physical development while also assisting low-income families with child care expenses.

Family Resource Center was awarded $131,490 for three programs: Bright Beginnings which focuses on early childhood programming; Community Prevention which focuses on tobacco and alcohol abuse prevention; and Hancock Addiction Prevention Program for Youth (HAPPY), a peer-to-peer prevention program.

Findlay Hope House for the Homeless was awarded $285,000 for four programs: the Housing Office, providing housing assistance and community referrals to low-income people; Independence Project provides six months of rental assistance and case management to homeless families or single adults; Hope House Shelter, providing transitional housing to women and women with children in a nine bedroom shelter for up to nine months; and Bridges Out of Poverty, a multi-faceted initiative focused on assisting people in generational poverty to be prosperous and communities to remain sustainable.

Girl Scouts of Western Ohio was awarded $57,000 for the Personal and Professional Development program which promotes girls’ personal growth and leadership development through a coordinated, progressive series of activities and experiences that help them become socially, morally, emotionally, physically and cognitively competent.

Hancock County Saves was awarded $27,500 to provide programs to promote and increase saving and debt reduction to produce financial stability among individuals and families through education and awareness.

HHWP Community Action Commission was awarded $255,000 for Hancock Area Transportation Services (HATS), a public transportation program taking people to work, health appointments and more.

Kidney Foundation of Northwest Ohio was awarded $9,000 for the Patient Direct Services and Education program in Hancock County.

Open Arms Domestic Violence & Rape Crisis Services was awarded $305,000 for three programs: Adult Services, providing immediate shelter for persons fleeing from violence; Child Services which includes screening for abuse, conducting support groups for children and providing supervised visits; and Violence Recovery, a program for offenders focused on taking responsibility and changing behavior.

In addition to the above grants, a memorandum of understanding has been entered into with the American Red Cross to reimburse services related to disaster relief and armed forces communications up to $50,000 for the year.

The total amount granted to agency programs and services totaled $1,746,119. Investor’s choice dollars totaled $179,383 this year. Designations to other United Ways totaled $106,736. Additional funds raised cover pledges that are uncollectable, board reserves and operating costs. The board has also earmarked $200,000 for the Halt Hunger Initiative, which provides funding for local food pantries and programs addressing food insecurity.

Individuals interested in serving on an Impact Team can contact Bev Phillips, community services director, at 419-423-1432 or beverly.phillips@uwhancock.org. The mission of United Way of Hancock County is to measurably improve people’s lives. This is accomplished by advancing the common good through focusing on the building blocks of a good life: education, health and financial stability. For more information about the work of United Way contact the office at 419-423-1432.