United Way provides COVID-19 emergency funding


SIDNEY — Shelby County United Way has awarded $25,000 in rent and utility assistance to two organizations and $10,000 for food assistance to an additional organization.

The Shelby County Job and Family Services received $20,000 and Alpha Community Center received $5,000 for rent and utility assistance while Agape was awarded $10,000.

“The Shelby County United Way is working with community leaders and monitoring our county’s condition on a weekly basis. We are prepared to make additional investments to assist the health of our community through the recovery. This funding will provide stability and remove stress to families impacted by the crisis,” said Scott Barr, president and CEO.

The Shelby County Job and Family Services administers the COVID-19 Prevention, Retention, and Contingency Fund that helps families with rent, mortgage and utility assistance. They have exhausted over 70% of their funding in just three weeks. Eligible families, who have minor children, and meet income eligibility guidelines, may be able to get assistance up to $450.

“On behalf of the Shelby County Department of Job and Family Services, I would like to thank the Shelby County United Way for their generous donation of $20,000 to supplement our PRC COVID-19 program. We are very fortunate to have this partnership with the United Way, which will allow our agency to serve many more families in Shelby County during this crisis,” saod Steve Pulfer, Director. Individuals interested should call 937-498-4981, select option 5, and then select option 6.

The Alpha Community Center is a Shelby County United Way partner agency. They have exhausted their April rent and utility assistance funding and anticipate an increase in requests over the next couple of months. In addition to rent and utility assistance, he Alpha Community Center and Holy Angels Soup Kitchen are serving up to 90 carry out meals Monday to Friday for lunch.

Agape Distribution is serving over 70 families a day with curbside assistance. Staff and volunteers are delivering the food to client’s cars using the grocery carts. Clients are provided enough food to last over seven days. Since April 1, over 10% of all clients to Agape are first time visitors.

In addition to the most recent funding awards, the Shelby County United Way joined the Community Foundation of Shelby County to help start the Recovery 2020 Fund. The Shelby County United Way committed $10,000 and Barr and United Way board member Mike Lochard are members of the community grant review committee. Donors can visit the Community Foundation website at commfoun.com on the different ways to contribute to the Recovery 2020 fund.

In addition to Alpha Community Center and Agape, many Shelby County United Way agencies are still serving the community during these challenging times. Some in the critical human services impact areas include: Compassionate Care serving patients and administering pharmaceutical assistance, the YMCA Child Development Center and Wilma Valentine are approved Pandemic Child Care Centers for essential employees, and counseling and mental health services from Catholic Social Services. A Shelby County resident can dial 2-1-1, 24 hours a day to learn more about the many other United Way partner agencies still operating, in addition to all the other programs currently available in the community.

The Shelby County United Way is a local 501c3 non-profit organization. Monies raised in the annual campaign are invested locally under the leadership and direction of our local volunteer Board of Directors and Community Allocation Volunteers. Last year, over 17,000 residents were served by United Way programming. Shelby County United Way awards funds through agency allocations, Special Project Grants, POWER grants (United Way’s women initiatives group.), and Student United Way Grants. Over 40 organizations and volunteer groups benefit from United Way funding. Visit shelbycountyunitedway.org to learn more about all funded agencies and programs.