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June 8, 2022
The Union County Local Review Board submitted a plan to award $22,585 from Phase 39 and Phase ARPAR to six local entities. Both plans are pending final approval by the EFSP.

Impact60, Society of St. Vincent DePaul at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, and MAMA (Marysville Area Ministerial Association) on behalf of The Hope Center were awarded funding from Phase 39 and all applied to use funding to help with emergency rent/mortgage assistance in the county under the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program (EFSP). Phase 39 awards were as follows: Impact 60 — $4,085; St. Vincent DePaul — $3,500; and The Hope Center — $4,000.

Bridges Community Action, Daily Needs Assistance (DNA) of Plain City, and Union County Board of Developmental Disabilities (UCBDD) were awarded funding from Phase ARPAR. Bridges was awarded $4,000 to be used for shelf-stable canned goods as part of a food pantry project; $4,000 was awarded to DNA to be used for emergency rent/mortgage and utility assistance; and $3,000 to UCBDD for emergency food and hotel stays for their clients. EFSP is a federal fund administered locally by The United Way of Union County (UWUC). Corinne Bix, UWUC Director, serves as the local board chair.

Heath Ring sits on the local board. Ring is the executive director for The Heart of Ohio Homeless Shelter in Marion County which serves Union residents who are facing homelessness.

“This decision held a substantial amount of weight to it. The local board was in an unfortunate position where we had to decide on a smaller amount of funds than what was requested by EFSP applicants,” Ring explained. “The Board recognizes that each of the agencies that applied do amazing work in the community and most, if not all, deserve more than what we had the privilege to give them!”

Total grant requests from all six applicants totaled $60,085. Ring suggested during the local board meeting that all applying agencies receive some amount of funding and Nancy Beals, Mental Health, and Recovery Board of Union County, echoed that proposal.

“By providing all applicants with some funding it helps advocate the No Wrong Door approach allowing for more accessibility across the county to those in need,” Bix said.

Per EFSP guidelines, the local board is comprised of individuals representing local government, social services, and the faith community. Members include Corinne Bix, United Way of Union County; Union County Commissioner Chris Schmenk; Becky Bolt, Hope Center; Gene Miller, Marysville Area Ministerial Association; Andrew Binegar, Bridges Community Action; Brittani Perdue, The Salvation Army; Cory Paul American Red Cross; Deacon Dave Bezusko, Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church; Jerome Shapiro, Jewish Foundation; Heath Ring, Heart of Ohio Homeless Shelter; Laura Michalak, Union County Board of DD; Sue Ware, Union County Job & Family Services; Holly Zweizig, Mental Health and Recovery Board of Union County; Jason Stanford, Union County-Marysville Economic Development; Trevor Secord, Union County Family YMCA.

Given EFSP guidelines for board representation, there is often cross-over between those who sit on the board and the agencies that apply for funding. In these cases, those board members abstain from voting.

Under terms of the grant from the National Board, local agencies chosen to receive funds must: 1) be private voluntary non-profits or units of government, 2) have a sound accounting system, 3) practice nondiscrimination, 4) have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs and 5) if they are a private voluntary organization, they must have an active board.

The total amount of $22,585 to be used in Union County was allocated by a National Board that is chaired by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and consists of representatives from The Salvation Army; American Red Cross; United Jewish Communities; Catholic Charities, USA; National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA; and United Way Worldwide. The National Board was charged to distribute funds appropriated by Congress to help expand the capacity of food and shelter programs in high-need areas around the country. These dollars represent Phase 39 and Phase ARPAR of the program.
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