Council will vote on dollars to feed hungry, shelter homeless

December 1, 2009

By Warren Kagarise

Many human services agencies are in line to receive the same amount of city grant dollars next year as the organizations received in 2009.

The city is set to distribute $218,000 in grant money to 35 organizations to programs to feed the hungry, aid sexual assault victims and provide shelter, health care and legal assistance.

At the Nov. 19 Council Services & Operations Committee meeting, members lauded the organizations for the work done with city dollars. The committee then sent the grant recommendations to the full council for a Dec. 7 vote.

Friends of Youth, a nonprofit organization that works to provide housing, counseling and medical needs, stands to be the largest recipient of city grant dollars next year: Officials recommended $22,300 for the organization, the same amount the group received in 2009, but $2,230 less than leaders requested for 2010.

The nonprofit Eastside Domestic Violence Program is in line to receive the second-largest grant: $17,270. The program helps domestic violence victims separate safely from their abusers.

Most of the other grants recommended are less than $10,000. Officials recommended that Eastside Baby Corner, a center for items donated by other service agencies, receive $11,090 — $1,510 less than the organization requested, but $590 more than the organization received for 2009.

The city Human Services Commission recommended the grant amounts to the City Council. The council then passed along the recommendations to the Services & Operations Committee for additional review.

All told, the commission received 36 grant applications for $249,418. From the total, 34 of the applicants were programs funded by the city in 2009, and two were new. Most applicants came from established programs with a significant presence in Issaquah.

Despite the tough economy, commissioners received fewer applications than last year, when the city received 44 grant applications for $359,490.

Reapplying applicants use a short form to request grant money; new applicants are required to complete a longer form in order to be eligible for city dollars.

Issaquah was the only Eastside city accepting applications from human services agencies for 2010. Other cities operate under a two-year budget cycle.

The recommendations from the Human Services Commission also include: $8,000 for AtWork! — an organization that helps disabled people learn skills and find jobs, $8,000 for YWCA of Seattle, King & Snohomish County to provide transitional housing; and $6,500 for Compassion House, a nonprofit organization that provides housing to families in distress.

Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or wkagarise@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com.

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