$500K in awards to social services nonprofits recommended by Bloomington committee

On Tuesday evening, members of a committee made up of Bloomington citizens and city councilmembers settled on preliminary awards of $511,000 to 32 different nonprofit organizations.

These are the top 10 agencies recommended to receive Jack Hopkins social services funding in 2021, sorted by award. A complete chart, with project descriptions is included below.

The $511,000 had to be stretched across $546,793 in requests, which had been ratcheted down from the total of $648,197 from 35 organizations.

The $648,197 is in line with the average over the last three years, which has been about $690,000.

Historically, the $5 million in grants that have been made since were made based on $10 million in requests.

The top 10 nonprofits by their recommended allocations were: Hoosier Hills Food Bank ($35,000); New Hope for Families ($35,000); St. Vincent DePaul ($30,000); Tandem Community Birth Center and Postpartum House ($30,000); LIFEDesigns Inc. ($28,676); Community Justice and Mediation Center ($27,424); Beacon Inc. (Shalom Center) ($25,000); Boys & Girls Clubs of Bloomington ($24,000); My Sister’s Closet of Monroe County ($22,400); and Monroe County United Ministries ($22,000).

Only the 32 groups that were invited a week and a half ago to present their project proposals to the Jack Hopkins social services funding committee were recommended for awards on Tuesday.

Tuesday’s preliminary allocations will be followed by an allocation hearing on May 18, and city council approval of the awards on June 16.

The large number of awards for the entire requested amount was due in part to an extra $200,000 that was included in the $511,000. Over the last few years, the total allocation, from the city’s general fund, has been around $300,000.

The extra funding was allocated as part of the 2021 budget, in the second phase of Bloomington mayor John Hamilton’s Recover Forward initiative, which is meant to help Bloomington bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic.

To prepare for Tuesday, the committee members had worked out their individual recommended allocations for each nonprofit. The committee started from a shared spreadsheet with a column for the committee-member-recommended averages.

City councilmember Susan Sandberg, who has chaired the Jack Hopkins social services funding committee for the last few years, led the committee through the steps to put a number in the cell for the recommended column.

Several of the nonprofits got recommendations for full project funding from all committee members. Others had averages that were close enough to the full amount requested that committee members bumped the recommended amount to the full request.

Rounded to 2 decimal places, 26 out of 32 organizations received 100 percent of the amount requested.

The basic criteria for Jack Hopkins social services funding were first written down in a 1993 letter by councilmember Jack Hopkins, after whom the fund was named. Hopkins was a professor at Indiana University’s public and environmental affairs. The resolution that named the fund after Hopkins was approved by the city council in 2002, the month after Hopkins died.

Preliminary Jack Hopkins Awards (May 11, 2021)

Agency Project Request Award PCT
New Hope for Families New Hope is expanding its shelter beds by 70% and early childhood seats by 200% to more efficiently meet community need and maintain functional zero. We are requesting funding for furnishings and equipment for the new shelter and early childhood facilities. $35,000 $35,000 100%
Hoosier Hills Food Bank We are requesting $35,000.00. As part of our continued response to the Covid-19 pandemic, HHFB will continue purchasing food for distribution to our partner agencies as recovery continues and we await restoration of pre-pandemic food sources such as food drives, prepared food rescue and retail donations. $35,000 $35,000 100%
Tandem Community Birth Center and Postpartum House Lease our birth center space, purchase supplies, pay for insurance and utilities and hire two Certified Nurse Midwives who can begin offering limited services. $30,000 $30,000 100%
St. Vincent DePaul We request $30,000 to assist the vulnerable population in the city of Bloomington to pay rent and rent deposits. With this grant funding we will pay up to $300 to help families stabilize their housing situation. $30,000 $30,000 100%
LIFEDesigns Inc. LIFEDesigns is requesting $28,676.26 to help us Pilot a New Day Services Program for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. This request is urgent and important now because of the effects the Coronavirus has had on our community. $28,676 $28,676 100%
Community Justice and Mediation Center We are requesting $27,424 to provide on-going operational support for the Housing and Eviction Prevention Project (HEPP) by providing free landlord-tenant mediation services, along with the overall project management, social service referrals, and outreach services to tenants and landlords involved in eviction proceedings. The goal is to reduce evictions and improve overall housing stability for renters in the City of Bloomington and Monroe County, particularly low-income households. $27,424 $27,424 100%
Beacon Inc. (Shalom Center) We are requesting $25,000 to boost our eviction prevention funds for people at risk of losing their homes due to the COVID-19-induced recession. Fully funded, this program would allow us to increase rent and utility support for 200 households up to $250 per household. $25,000 $25,000 100%
Boys & Girls Clubs of Bloomington We are seeking general operations support (bridge funding) as we transition back to full Club capacity as the public health crisis allows. $25,000 $24,000 96%
My Sister’s Closet of Monroe County My Sister’s Closet is respectfully requesting $22,456 to supplement the salary of an Assistant Store Manager so we are able to provide sufficient amounts of interview and job attire for clients coming to us for employment assistance. $22,456 $22,400 100%
Monroe County United Ministries We are requesting $22,261.56 for external improvement materials to increase safety, create positive visibility, and improve the message our physical environment sends $22,262 $22,000 99%
Amethyst House We are requesting $16,300 to upgrade our Women’s Residential facility. These funds will allow us to fix the floor support both in the Kitchen and Dining Room and remodel the kitchen. With multiple residents living in the house at one time, common area facilities require frequent maintenance, and we hope to improve those facilities in upgrading to more durable materials. $21,800 $21,800 100%
Hotels for Hope Inc Provide hotel rooms and continuity of care for our currently enrolled families as well as several more, including private living space, necessities like meals and hygiene supplies $21,520 $21,500 100%
Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Central Indiana BBBSSCI is requesting $20,000 in operating support. These funds will help power our mission by uniting young people (Littles) with caring, positive adult role models (Bigs) in professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships. Together, they clear a path to success by breaking societal barriers, closing opportunity gaps and overcoming adversities like poverty and identity-based discrimination. $20,000 $20,000 100%
Catholic Charities Bloomington Catholic Charities Bloomington is seeking one-time funding of $17,800 to expand our agency’s capacity to serve adolescents and young adults in our city. The unmet need for youth mental health services had been growing before the pandemic and now adding the prolonged nature of the COVID-19 pandemic has robbed many teens of their ability to socialize, a key protective factor in their overall developmental and well-being. $17,800 $17,800 100%
Indiana Recovery Alliance The Indiana Recovery Alliance is seeking a one time capital investment of $20,000 to cover half of the salary needed to hire a Development Director (DD) to further our goal of long term financial stability. We have secured an anonymous donor to match up to $20,000 for this position. This is a one time investment, as the DD position will be self sustaining by year two. The DD will bri $20,000 $17,000 85%
Pets Alive Inc., Bloomington We are requesting $35,200.32 to support and expand our high-volume spay/neuter program and Wellness Clinic over the next three month period as we approach the Light at the End of the COVID-19 Tunnel. $35,200 $12,500 36%
HealthNet Inc. HealthNet is requesting a one-time grant of $17,690 to conduct a public awareness campaign promoting HealthNet Bloomington Health Center and educating the public that it is safe to seek healthcare despite the continuing pandemic. $17,690 $12,300 70%
Project School, The We are requesting $12,210 to install a laundry room in The Project School. The laundry room will be available for the 40% of our school families who experience poverty, many of whom do not have access to reliable and affordable laundry services. $12,210 $12,210 100%
New Leaf New Life We are requesting $12,015.00 to provide case management services and direct service supplies to support individuals who are currently/recently incarcerated with their reentry back into our community $12,015 $12,000 100%
Mothers Hubbard’s Cupboard We are requesting $11,325.03 in funding to purchase several pantry display shelves and office furniture for our newly renovated conference room/additional office space. $11,325 $11,325 100%
Middle Way House Middle Way is requesting $10,000 toward the purchase of a full-size work truck to replace its rapidly deteriorating 1996 Chevrolet S-10. $10,000 $10,000 100%
Habitat for Humanity Habitat is requesting $9,473 to purchase a riding mower, chipper/mulcher, and chainsaw in order to utilize staff and volunteer resources to self-manage landscaping requirements. By redirecting monies currently spent on outside landscaping providers, Habitat will save significant funds that instead will be used to build affordable housing. $9,473 $9,473 100%
Pro Bono Indiana, dba District 10 Pro Bono Project The Housing and Eviction Prevention Project will continue to provide legal services to low-income tenants in order to preserve housing and economic wellbeing. $8,206 $8,206 100%
Refugee Support Network The project will provide funds to address urgent basic needs of clients, who lost work hours and jobs due to the COVID pandemic. Delays in immigration system processing, including delayed receipt of work permits, creates unreasonable hardship on clients, preventing them from directly working to support their families. $8,000 $8,000 100%
Bloomington Community Bike Project We are requesting $6,800 for our Free Bikes, a tow behind trailer and bike shop equipment. $6,800 $6,800 100%
City Church For All Nations Outreach CCFAN/Healing Hands Outreach Center, Inc. is seeking $10,000 from JACK HOPKINS SOCIAL SERVICES FUNDING COMMITTEE to purchase a used moving truck needed to transport donated items to city residents. $10,000 $6,649 66%
Meals on Wheels, Bloomington Bloomington Meals on Wheels is respectfully requesting $5,673 for website redevelopment and maintenance. Our website was developed in 2011 and it has become increasingly difficult and time consuming to update content and add new features. It frequently crashes and experiences long loading times. It needs to be updated to reflect 2021 technology needs and allow easy access for staff and volunteers to make quick updates to convey important information to the community. $5,673 $5,673 100%
Community Kitchen of Monroe County, Inc. We are requesting $5,400 to replace a sixteen-year-old produce cooler with a new one. The new one would have a different door style that we believe will reduce the issues that lead to more repairs. $5,400 $5,400 100%
All-Options Pregnancy Resource Center We are requesting $3,940 to pilot a mobile diaper distribution program for the rest of 2021. Working with community partners, we would identify and do outreach to underserved populations and neighborhoods in Bloomington and rent a van/truck twice a month to do mobile distribution at key locations. $3,940 $3,940 100%
Courage to Change Sober Living Courage to Change Sober living is asking for funding from Jack Hopkins to buy drug testing kits for use in our four sober living houses. $3,036 $3,036 100%
South Central Community Action Program Free, accessible video content that is specific to this area, in order to help them make affordable and healthy choices when shopping, cooking, and utilizing food pantries. We will also address the need for fresh local produce by donating 75% of produce to local food banks. $2,944 $2,944 100%
Persisterhood Workshop, Inc., The We are requesting to $2943.07 to cover the costs professional equipment and market infrastructure. This investment will allow us to expand our crafts workshop curricula, enhance our portfolio and production, and increase our fundraising capacity. $2,943 $2,943 100%
Total $546,793 $511,000