(May 23, 2019 - Asheville, NC) – Women for Women proudly recognized the 2019 grantees at the Power of the Purse® luncheon on Tuesday, May 21. With the distribution of this year's awards, the giving circle has granted more than $3.8 million to local nonprofits helping women and girls. The 2019 grantees are:
Asheville Buncombe Community Christian Ministry (ABCCM) - $44,800 over two years to expand the current “Steps to Success” model to include homeless or unsafely housed women affected by intimate partner or sexual violence who are actively engaged in Buncombe County’s Drug Treatment Court. This program offers a “Recovery Living Program,” at their Steadfast House women’s shelter with wraparound services including case management, life skills training, peer support, housing, job training and transportation. The grant will fund the first 4 months of lodging and services at Steadfast House as well as provide staff support. ABCCM is committed to providing services for this population and WFW’s seed funding will allow them to slowly expand the provision of these services from 2 women who are currently in the program to a total of 16 women over the next two years. Women in the program are empowered to establish healthy interpersonal relationships and meaningful employment that leads to living wages and permanent homes.
Boys and Girls Club of Henderson County - $32,000 over two years to provide staff and supplies for year-round, out-of-school care/programming for youth ages 6-18 who are living in domestic violence situations. Specifically, youth referred by Safelight of Henderson County will be guaranteed admission immediately into the program at no cost and ahead of a current wait list of over 100 children. For victims of domestic abuse, being able to secure steady employment is critical in achieving financial independence and parents say that after-school and summer programs help them keep their jobs. The grant funds will cover the costs for 15 of these referred youth to be admitted into the program each year, though the Club will allow up to 25 spaces for Safelight referrals. By creating direct access for these victims to out-of-school care for their children in a safe and nurturing environment, the program removes a significant barrier to leaving an abusive relationship and gaining financial independence.
Council on Aging of Buncombe County - $100,000 over two years to provide elder justice support, education, direct service and advocacy for older adults in situations of abuse, neglect, and exploitation. The grant will fund a full-time Elder Justice Navigator who will provide direct support and services to 100 older adults each year who are experiencing elder abuse. The project’s focus will be on moving seniors who are in an unsafe setting into a place of safety and support by providing them with assistance navigating the criminal justice system, financial assistance programs, and housing assistance applications. This project fills a significant gap in services for the elderly by providing broad public outreach, education, and more specifically, coordination of the range of services available to seniors.
Homeward Bound of WNC - $100,000 over two years to transition chronically homeless women with a history of intimate partner violence and/or sexual violence into safe, permanent housing. Permanent Supportive Housing is an evidence-based housing intervention program proven to be the most effective at ending chronic, long-term homelessness. The grant will fund a new case management position, exclusively dedicated to this population. Case management services will provide program participants with the extra support needed in order to remain housed. This case manager would serve up to 22 women at a time, building up to this capacity for a total of 25-30 over the two-year period. This grant directly addresses the fact that case management is now the critical barrier in moving homeless individuals into housing and will accelerate the housing opportunity for these women by about 2 years. Once basic housing needs are met, survivors can begin to heal.
Working Wheels - $45,000 over two years to increase their capacity to repair donated vehicles and expand their program to meet 100% of Helpmate’s need for 18 dependable cars per year for their clients who are survivors of intimate partner violence. All recipients are screened by Helpmate’s case managers and live primarily in Buncombe and Henderson counties. Recipients must be employed and able to pay $500 for their car, which includes a 6-month warranty. Grant funds will be used to hire a part-time automotive technician and purchase much-needed auto parts and mechanic tools. The program includes long term involvement with the women, providing continued training and safeguards in vehicular self-sufficiency. An affordable, dependable vehicle can provide survivors with increased access to employment and an improved quality of life.
Youth OUTright WNC - $20,000 over two years to fund operating costs, youth leadership stipends, and training materials/ resources for delivery to schools and youth-serving organizations. Their plan is to expand their services to the more rural counties of WNC to provide outreach, education, and advocacy for LGBTQIA+ youth. By providing targeted, age-appropriate consent education, they can equip youth with the necessary tools to break patterns of abuse and prevent the cycle from continuing. Aiming to serve 100+ youth as well as service providers, they have established close relationships with Gay/Straight Alliances (GSAs) and schools across 4 counties and have strategic plans to continue to grow their reach to include more of the rural counties of WNC. Their mission is to equip youth with the knowledge, confidence, critical thinking and proper communication skills to cultivate healthy relationships, advocate for themselves, and establish appropriate boundaries.