United Way to distribute $2 million to groups fighting poverty

  • By Chris Winters Herald Writer
  • Tuesday, June 7, 2016 8:20pm
  • Local News

EVERETT — The United Way of Snohomish County has announced it will distribute $2 million in grants over the next year.

The amount is similar to what the agency gave out in past funding cycles, but this time the United Way is targeting all the grant money toward a single goal: breaking the cycle of poverty.

That was a decision the organization made last year after holding more than 500 conversations and meetings in various forums with other nonprofits, agencies and community groups, said Jacqui Campbell, a spokeswoman for the United Way.

“Poverty kept coming to the surface as being one of the single-greatest needs in the community,” Campbell said.

She said that nearly 60,000 households in Snohomish County are struggling to make ends meet.

The grants will be shared among 56 separate programs in the county.

The largest recipients include Lutheran Community Services Northwest, which has been awarded $342,855 for three programs, Housing Hope ($252,920 for 10 programs), and Cocoon House ($242,000 for four programs).

Cocoon House, which operates housing and social service programs for youth and young adults, has long been a recipient of grant funding from the United Way, CEO Cassie Franklin said.

The United Way’s shift in focus made the application process a little different, she said.

“That vision and focus aligned 100 percent with what Cocoon House does,” Franklin said.

“We’re breaking this cycle of poverty with that young demographic so these kids won’t become chronically homeless adults,” she said.

Jennifer Willows, the director of impact and development at the YMCA of Snohomish County, said the United Way’s shift in philosophy didn’t result in any change in approach in applying for the money.

Grant applications are always aligned toward the needs of the donor’s priorities, Willows said.

“We certainly considered the specific program areas of emphasis that we would elevate for their consideration,” she said.

In the end, the YMCA received $191,616 for four programs: the Casino Road Adult Education Academy, Casino Road Scholars, Early Childhood Education and School Age Child Care.

The YMCA will continue support through other means those programs that were not funded through the United Way this year, Willows said.

The other shift in the United Way’s practices was to shorten the funding cycle this year from three years to one year.

That will allow the United Way to monitor more closely the effect that the grants are having, and to tailor the program accordingly, Campbell said.

“We wanted to make sure we had tightly aligned granting and results so we could make any future changes we needed in the granting cycle,” she said.

Going forward for the next funding cycle the grants will return to three-year grants, Campbell said.

Cocoon House was awarded $242,000 for fiscal 2017, which is up from the yearly average of about $180,000 during the past three-year funding cycle, Franklin said.

She said she believes the bump up in funding represents a closer match between the United Way’s and Cocoon House’s needs.

But it also means the next grant application process will start a lot sooner than before.

“That’s going to be a challenge, as it always is, and we don’t know what that’s going to be like next year,” Franklin said.

This story has been updated to clarify that while this year’s grant funding cycle will be only for one year, subsequent funding cycles will return to three years.

Chris Winters: 425-374-4165; cwinters@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @Chris_At_Herald.

Talk to us

More in Local News

The passenger loading ramp is nearing completion at the new Mukilteo ferry terminal. (Andrea Brown / The Herald) Feb. 4, 2021
State ferry fares set to rise for drivers and walk-ons

A state panel proposed a 2.5% hike in each of the next two years to cover the system’s operating costs.

Officers surrounded a Motel 6 near Everett Tuesday morning after a reported rape. A man tried to flee but was subdued and arrested. (Ellen Dennis / The Herald) 20210615
Man arrested after standoff at motel over reported rape

Surrounded by a SWAT team near Everett, the man tried to flee but was subdued with pepper balls.

In Edmonds, ‘small cell’ deployment permit becomes a big deal

The City Council has allowed new cellular equipment under an ordinance that regulates conditions.

Woman killed in hit-and-run south of Everett is identified

Detectives have been searching for the vehicle that struck Katherine Mueller, 31, of Snohomish.

Highway 99 fatal crash victim from Seattle identified

Sarah Cooper was the passenger in the car that reportedly crossed into oncoming traffic in Lynnwood.

Parolee accused of raping stranger on way to work in Everett

Bail set at $250,000 for James Spitzer, who served time for a shootout with a Nevada sheriff’s sergeant in 2011.

Early morning gunshots in Mukilteo lead to arrest

Detectives learned the shots were related to a domestic violence incident.

A portion of the site of the proposed Lake Stevens Costco at the intersection of Highway 9 (right) and South Lake Stevens Road (below, out of view). (Chuck Taylor / Herald file)
Shovel alert: Groundbreaking on Lake Stevens Costco is near

A land sale in early June cleared the way. The mayor says dirt could be flying as soon as next week.

Trina Davis watches the while playing a game for ASA Tel Aviv in Israel. (Moshik Oshri)
She fled rocket fire in Israel for the safety of Marysville

MPHS grad Trina Davis was enjoying her first professional soccer season when the fighting broke out.

Most Read