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Poughkeepsie…This afternoon, Dutchess County Executive Marcus J. Molinaro announced the third and final round of funding awards for the 2015-16 Dutchess County Agency Partner Grant Program. The announcement was made at a special site visit at the North East Community Center (NECC) in Millerton. Eight programs, representing six agencies, including the North East Community Center, were awarded a total of $287,000 in the final round of funding. The awards are given to local non-profit agencies to deliver outcome-based programs in areas of identified need. All together, 13 agencies, representing 21 programs, were awarded a total of $780,000 through this year’s grant program.
While at NECC, County Executive Molinaro met with program staff and clients from the Community Partnership with Schools and Business (CPSB) and Food Access programs. Prior to the site visit, County Executive Molinaro visited the Webutuck School Garden in Amenia, a community garden funded in part by the Food Access program. The garden harvests and distributes produce for consumption at the school cafeteria and fresh food pantries. Students are also given the option to take home fresh produce from the garden. Additionally, County Executive Molinaro met with local business owners in the Village of Millerton who employ youth through the CPSB program.
County Executive Molinaro said, “This afternoon I had the opportunity to witness first-hand the impact of the work done through the programs at the North East Community Center. These programs are a prime example of why the Agency Partner Grant Program was established, to partner with local agencies to fulfill community needs efficiently and effectively. The list of awardees for this year’s Agency Partner Grant will undoubtedly address a variety of needs present within Dutchess County, and we look forward to seeing the end result of their services.”
The funding categories for the 2015-16 grant awards are: Economic & Cultural Benefit; Health & Human Service; and Environmental & Agricultural Sustainability. The third and final round of 2015-16 Agency Partner Grant funding includes grant awards to:
Economic & Cultural Benefit
Mental Health America of Dutchess County, Inc. - $15,000 to prepare young adults living with mental illness with life skills training, wellness self-management, and job preparation. Participants will also have the opportunity to take part in community service projects, internships and network with local businesses and community agencies.
North East Community Center - $41,000 to continue Community Partnership with Schools and Business, a work-readiness training program for teenagers and young adults.
Jenny Hansell, Executive Director at the North East Community Center said, “We are grateful to the County for their continued support of our programs. Our partnership has allowed us to deliver services that provide youth with the necessary experience and skills set to prosper as adults in the workforce, in addition to giving families living in the northeastern region of the County access to affordable farm fresh, nutritious food.”
Health & Human Service
Child Abuse Prevention Center, Inc. (CAPC) - $25,000 to implement a training series for community professionals on recognizing and responding to human trafficking victims. Additionally, a part-time consultant will be hired to develop a customized Rapid Response Tool for the County to help identify trafficked victims and to get these individuals into care more quickly.
Friends of Seniors of Dutchess County Corp. - $30,000 to maintain its senior transportation program through the employment of a dispatcher to coordinate non-emergency medical transportation schedules for Dutchess County residents.
Hudson River Housing, Inc. - $47,000 to continue its Financial Fitness training program, a four-hour group education course that teaches participants how to properly manage finances. The overall goals of the program are to decrease debt, increase credit scores and increase savings balance.
North East Community Center - $29,000 to coordinate various nutrition and food access programs in the northeast part of the County. Food Access projects in Millerton and Amenia include the Farm & Food Education Program, community gardens, a Summer Food Service Program, and the Share the Bounty Fresh Food Pantry.
Dutchess County Legislator Gregg Pulver said, “Congratulations to all of the recipients of this year’s Agency Partner Grant. The work done by our agency partners has impacted numerous lives across the County, and I look forward to seeing the continuation of the positive difference their programs make in our community.”
Environmental & Agricultural Sustainability
Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County - $70,000 to provide Dutchess County municipal officials and residents with the education, resources and support needed to make informed land-use planning decisions within their municipalities. Topics will include Greenway & Smart Land Use, Stormwater Management, Municipal Resource Mapping, Water Supply & Wellhead Protection, Energy, and more.
Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County - $30,000 to educate businesses, farmers and homeowners on best practices in organics recycling in order to increase composting of organic materials in support of “Rethinking Waste,” the County’s local solid waste management plan.
Lydia Edelhaus, Director of Family Support & Advocacy Services at Mental Health America of Dutchess County, Inc. said, “We are thankful for the support from the County which will allow us to continue to assist young adults in our community dealing with mental illnesses. Our Young Adult Transition program has had a tremendous impact on our participants, giving them the confidence and knowledge to achieve success personally and professionally.”
County Executive Molinaro implemented the Agency Partner Grant Program in 2013 to replace the ‘routine’ funding many non-profits had historically received in the county budget through individual line items. The program provides the ability to respond to evolving community needs through a competitive process designed to produce better outcomes and allocate scarce resources more effectively. A total of $780,000 in grant funding was made available for programs designed to address needs such as poverty and homelessness, domestic violence and sexual assault, youth employment, senior transportation, and agriculture and farming sustainability, among others.
The Agency Partner Grant Program is administered on an April 1st to March 31st program year under the direction of the Department of Planning & Development. For the 2015-16 program year, the department received 39 applications from 25 agencies, requesting over $1.5 million in funding. Applications are reviewed by the Community Development Advisory Committee (CDAC), a committee comprised of members of the local nonprofit community and county and municipal officials. The CDAC’s funding recommendations are then submitted to the County Executive for final approval.
Previously announced 2015-16 Agency Partner Grant Program funding awards include:
Economic & Cultural Benefit
Spark Media Project (previously Children’s Media Project) - $15,000 to support youth vocational assistance through an after-school and summer workforce program at the Spark Media Lab, where participants receive training and experience in media production, by working on the award-winning DROP TV series and broadcasting Radio Uprising, SMP’s weekly radio broadcast.
Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County - $95,000 to support Youth Vocational Training Programs, Green Teen Community Gardening (GTCG) in Beacon and No Child Left Inside (NCLI) in Poughkeepsie, which will provide at least 30 Dutchess County youth with paid working opportunities and work readiness skills.
Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County - $50,000 to support 4-H youth development, to prepare the next generation of agri-professionals via development of literacy and public speaking skills, focusing on writing comprehension, and developing marketable job skills.
Literacy Connections - $30,000 to help adults attain basic literacy skills through the Adult & Family Literacy Program and provide reading enrichment to children struggling with reading through the Book Buddies program.
Health & Human Service
Hudson River Housing, Inc. - $25,000 to maintain a Housing Navigator program to assist homeless adults and families in transition to appropriate and stable housing. This program will also be eligible for a similar amount of funding from New York State through the Dutchess County Department of Community and Family Services (DCFS) for total support of $50,000.
Catholic Charities Community Services of Dutchess County - $25,000 to provide comprehensive case management for low-income residents by providing ongoing services to meet the immediate and basic needs of clients who are at risk of homelessness or who have difficulty affording basic necessities.
Family Promise of the Mid-Hudson Valley, Inc. - $10,000 to hire a case manager to provide families who are homeless with short term emergency housing and creation of a management plan to obtain and secure employment and housing.
Hudson Valley House of Hope - $27,000 to hire a full-time case manager and part-time case aide to provide direct services to individuals that have experienced domestic violence, child abuse, and/or sexual assault.
Family Services - $39,000 to hire a part-time hotline advocate to answer Lethality Assessment Program (LAP) hotline calls from police officers in LAP jurisdictions. The advocate will assist in the processing of LAP paperwork, communication between the program and law enforcement jurisdictions, statistical data collection, and streamlining referrals to the High Risk Team.
Mediation Center of Dutchess County, Inc. - $37,000 to support the Coalition on Elder Abuse in Dutchess County by training community professionals to prevent and address elder abuse by identifying the signs, and refer clients to targeted resources that best fit their unique situations. This program will also be eligible for a similar amount of funding from New York State through the Dutchess County Department of Community & Family Services (DCFS) for total support of $74,000.
Child Abuse Prevention Center, Inc. (CAPC) - $10,000 to continue the Personal Safety Program, designed to educate young children on strategies to overcome and prevent bullying.
Mediation Center of Dutchess County, Inc. - $35,000 to continue the implementation of the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program in Dutchess County schools.
Environmental & Agricultural Sustainability
Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County - $95,000 to provide research-based education, outreach, and training in Dutchess County agricultural industries to enable the growth and enhancement of their operations. CCEDC will also facilitate discussions with farmers, municipal officials, and county leaders about the importance of agriculture to the local economy, environment and the related infrastructures necessary to ensure that County agricultural businesses thrive.
To learn more about the Agency Partner Grant Program, visit: https://www.dutchessny.gov/Departments/Planning/Agency-Partner-Grant-Program.htm
To view more pictures from County Executive Molinaro’s site visit at the Webutuck School Garden, North East Community Center and the CPSB business tour in the Village of Millerton, visit the Dutchess County Government Facebook page.