June 15, 2023 - Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry today announced that 27 local non-profit organizations will receive funding from the City of Fort Wayne’s federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) dollars, the City’s remaining allocation of CDBG- COVID Cares Act dollars, and CDBG Emergency Solution dollars.
Approximately $470,000 will be available to help low- and moderate-income residents with shelter, basic needs, employment skills, language translation and interpretation, and youth development.
Today’s announcement was made at Blue Jacket Inc, a non-profit located at 2826 Calhoun St., which offers pre-employment and job readiness training, personal development, and job placement services through the Blue Jacket Academy. CDBG dollars will be used to support the Academy Facilitator and Career Manager to expand the Blue Jacket Academy.
This year, the following non-profits will receive grants:
- A Mother's Hope
Support intensive case management to all residents in the maternity home (a homeless shelter for expectant mothers) and those in their after-care program.
- Boys & Girls Club
Support the club site located in Brookmill Court Apartments, part of the Fort Wayne Housing Authority, to provide afterschool programming.
Support the HUD requirement to have a Coordinated Entry system in our region (an unfunded mandate). Brightpoint serves as the lead agency and will use this funding to pay for the positions that address the requirement.
- A Stronger Family
Support the expansion of the BASF programming at Villages of Hanna, where youth and their families are connected to mental health services and are provided tangible tools for success - pairing them with positive mentors and businesses in the community.
- Catholic Charities
Support the Journey Home program, which provides one-on-one case management services for individuals as they overcome any underlying barriers and support their journey of transitioning from shelter to community life.
- Circles of Allen County
The program will focus on providing social capital to help individuals achieve self-sufficiency. Graduates from their program would receive financial assistance to obtain child care or further their education.
- Euell A. Wilson Center
Support of EAWC's new facility programming, including a six-week summer camp and daily after-school programming, which is designed to provide academic support, enhance wellness and health and inspire future success.
- Fort Wayne Urban League
Support youth empowerment services, including one-on-one tutoring and peer support.
- Healthier Moms & Babies
Support of the Mobile Diaper Distribution Unit coordinator. The diaper distribution program provides free diapers and other health, wellness, and hygiene items to families in need.
- Housing Opportunities Program
Help families with Housing Choice Vouchers navigate the housing market and secure decent and affordable housing. The Housing Search and placement services offered through HOP help address the barriers/screening criteria to make them more appealing to landlords.
- Language Services Network (*Will receive grants for 2 separate programs)
*Translation and interpretation services, including 2 pieces of training for interpreters in the mental health field, support Language Access Plan, and Language Help Here! The campaign provides 2 part-time coordinators to assist with intake, scheduling, and other needed support services.
*English Innovations classes to help immigrants attain the reading, writing, and communication skills they want and need to gain employment and/or pursue further education.
- Lutheran Social Services, Inc.
The expansion of LSSI Works personal and professional development training, quality job placement, financial education, job retention, and stability services. The goal is also to work with participants living with a disability to ensure they receive the specialized coaching and support needed to secure sustainable employment.
- The Literacy Alliance
Support the instructors for the Literacy Alliance's Pre-High School Equivalency one-to-one tutoring for adults and the English Language Learners classes for adults to help individuals needing improved English language skills. The goal is to serve 175 individuals.
- Vincent Village Care Car Service
Supporting their Car service provides essential transportation to bridge the gap between public transportation's limited hours and mitigate the potentially high costs for alternative transportation options (i.e., Lyft). The Care Car program helps families achieve self-sufficiency by providing access to transportation for key employment, medical, and child care appointments. Rides are purchased with points earned while meeting program goals. The goal is to serve 60 individuals.
- Vincent Village
Support the salary of a part-time Resume and Job Search assistant for the to-be-built Vincent Village Community Business Resource Center that will provide technical assistance, training, mentoring, and access to high-speed internet for job searches and applications. The goal is to serve 50 individuals.
- Wellspring (*Will receive grants for 2 separate programs)
*Support the older Adult Program at Wellspring. The program's primary focus is to provide a safe environment for low-income seniors and individuals with disabilities to interact socially and break barriers to independence.
*Support expanding access to the After-School Program and Summer Day Camp at Wellspring. Both programs aim to assist low-income families in various ways, including providing a free childcare option and a safe environment for its participants to continue to learn and grow outside of school.
Support of the Entrepreneurship Campus, which supports adult and youth endeavors by providing skills for life (i.e., teamwork, critical thinking, and academic performance), prevents exclusion from the market.
- YWCA NEIN (*Will receive grants for 2 separate programs)
*Support YWCA's Emergency Financial Assistance program helps remove critical barriers to self-sufficiency and stable housing by providing short-term financial intervention that allows many clients to attain or maintain stable housing as they work to build back stability while recovering from domestic violence or addiction.
*Support the shelter operations at the YWCA
- Housing Opportunities Program
Support Rapid Re-Housing. Families experiencing homelessness will receive assistance finding and maintaining housing with rental and utility support.
- St. Joseph Missions Women's Shelter
Support shelter operations at St. Joseph Missions Women's Shelter, the only emergency shelter that serves explicitly unaccompanied women experiencing homelessness
Support Brightpoint's efforts in helping 26 families maintain or obtain stable housing with Rapid Rehousing funding.
- The Lutheran Foundation, Inc.
Support the collaboration for the Handing Out Hope project with Street Outreach dollars. The goal is to serve 1,000 individuals.
- Just Neighbors
Support the street outreach endeavors with the Same City Food Truck. All funding to go toward the Case Manager's salary.
The City receives CDBG dollars annually from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to fund activities that primarily benefit low- and moderate-income residents. Because of federal cuts to CDBG allocations over the past decade, many cities have stopped funding non-profit services. Mayor Henry, however, continues his commitment to these services.
“Fort Wayne is a people-focused community, and we care about one another. That’s evident today as we award grants to organizations committed to making a difference to help others in need,” said Mayor Henry. “We’re coming together to say that individuals and families matter. Through collaborative efforts, we’re going to continue the positive momentum that we’ve been experiencing in our city. Our best days are ahead.”
The City uses a competitive application process to award the grants. A volunteer committee helps score the applications and makes recommendations on funding. Criteria are based on goals for the use of federal funds that are developed in part with input from local residents.