Times News: Nonprofits seeing large swell in funds for emergency food, shelter programs.

KINGSPORT — Almost $200,000 in federal funds will be funneled to local nonprofits to help supplement emergency and food-and-shelter programs in Sullivan County, officials said.

The amount that United Way of Greater Kingsport is helping to allocate is more than a 200% increase from its usual award, with additional funds coming from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. The latest allocation is almost $140,000 more than the last allotment a little more than a year ago.

“That is a lot more dollars on the table,” said Becca Sutphen, senior director of community impact for the United Way of Greater Kingsport.

Sullivan County was awarded $47,658 in “Phase 39” funding and $147,300 through the rescue plan act for a total of $194,958, according to a press release.

Phase 39 is the latest funding provided by the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Sutphen said the county tends to receive anywhere from $60,000 to $70,000 in allocations for the emergency food-and-shelters programs.

In December 2020, the county received $56,444 during “Phase 38,” the last allocation by DHS and FEMA, records show.

United Way is charged to distribute the funds throughout the community and will do so in February when its local board convenes. But area nonprofit agencies are being asked to apply for funds.

“We are inviting nonprofits in the community in Sullivan County to apply,” Sutphen said.

The award money is not available for individuals.

Agencies in the past that have received awards include Meals on Wheels, the Food Pantry, Second Harvest Food Bank and the Salvation Army.

Sutphen said the deadline for getting the application to United Way is Feb. 9. The money will be allocated by March 1, she said.

“I anticipate I will start receiving applications by the end of this week,” Sutphen said.

The 13-person local board will convene sometime after Feb. 9 to divvy out the dollars, she said. The board is comprised of community members, government leaders, a representative from the homeless community and a representative from the United Way of Bristol.

Under the terms of the grant, those eligible to receive funds must be private voluntary nonprofits or units of government, be eligible to receive federal funds, have an accounting system, practice nondiscrimination, have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and shelter services and if a private, voluntary organization it must have a voluntary board.

For those who wish to apply, the application must be submitted by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 9, to the United Way of Greater Kingsport, 301 Louis St., Suite 201, Kingsport TN 37660.


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