Grants to help 42 agencies
With the approval of the 2005 budget Tuesday, Pitkin County committed to $736,399 in grants to 42 local health and human service agencies and community nonprofits. In addition, $200,400 in emergency funding was distributed to 10 health and human services grantees to help replace lost support from federal and state grant programs. The county grant program is supported by a five-year dedicated property tax approved by voters in November 2002. Agencies receiving grants range from health and human service agencies such as Aspen Counseling Center, which provides mental health and substance abuse services to county residents and workers, to community nonprofit organizations including the Independence Pass Foundation and GrassRoots Television. Programs for families, youth, seniors, and the developmentally disabled are all supported by county grants.The money will be disbursed in March.”We are now entering into our fourth year of the dedicated fund, and it is exciting to see the impact these dollars have made in our community,” said Nan Sundeen, director of health and human services for Pitkin County. Agencies supported by the dedicated fund are reporting positive outcomes from the provision of services, Sundeen said. For example, 61 percent of parents are showing an increased knowledge of child development as a result of the Family Visitor Program; 96 percent of developmentally disabled children are able to stay in their family home as a result of Mountain Valley Developmental Services. Sundeen said 70 percent of clients in Aspen Counseling Center’s intensive outpatient substance abuse program have graduated from the program, and 82 percent of the juveniles diverted from the district court through the YouthZone diversion program did not re-offend. “The support provided by the dedicated fund helps these important programs continue their valuable work to make our community strong and healthy,” she said.Fifty grant applications for 2005 funding were submitted for consideration. The citizen grant review committee, made up of volunteers appointed by the county commissioners, reviewed the applications and made recommendations.
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