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Local News

Will County nonprofits awarded $398,202 for emergency food, shelter

Funds will be disbursed to area nonprofits by local board

JOLIET – Will County has been chosen to receive $398,202 to supplement emergency food and shelter programs.

That’s about a 6 percent increase from last year, when the United Way of Will County received $373,569 to disperse among nonprofits.

The national board of the Emergency Food and Shelter Program, led by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, decides how much to award counties across the country.

United Way of Will County President and CEO Michael Hennessy said the national board looks at different statistics to determine what services have been provided each year and to what extent. The board considers statistics that gauge need based on rent, utilities, nights spent at homeless and domestic violence shelters, and more.

The local Emergency Food and Shelter Program board, chaired by Hennessy, will consider applications from the county’s nonprofits for funding from the $398,202.

Last year Catholic Charities, Crisis Center for South Suburbia, Guardian Angel Community Services, MorningStar Mission, Northern Illinois Food Bank, the Visitation & Aid Society and the Will County Center for Community Concerns received funding under the Emergency Food and Shelter Program.

The beneficiaries aren’t expected to differ much this year.

“We are grateful for the support from the [Emergency Food and Shelter Program’s] national board,” Hennessy said. “We appreciate our local agencies for their involvement.”

Under terms of the grant from the national board, a local agency chosen to receive funds must: be a private voluntary nonprofit organization or a unit of government; have an accounting system; practice nondiscrimination; demonstrate the capability to deliver emergency food or shelter services throughout the year; and, if it is a private voluntary nonprofit, have a voluntary board of directors.

The local Emergency Food and Shelter Program board will determine how the funds awarded to Will County will be allocated to emergency food and shelter programs operated by local nonprofit service organizations.

Public or private voluntary nonprofit organizations interested in applying for Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds are advised to contact Hennessy at 815-723-2500 or by Feb. 15.

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