Community service grants to 38 organizations totaling $135,400 were approved by Monroe County commissioners at their Wednesday morning meeting.
The community service grants are named after a former county councilor, the late Sophia Travis.
At Wednesday’s meeting, president of the board of commissioners, Julie Thomas, called it an “aptly named program.”
She said that Travis “really served this community so well.” Thomas added: “Her life was too short.”
This year’s awards had already received approval from the county council at a July work session.
By dollar amount, the top 10 grants this year were awarded to: Beacon Inc. ($7,060); Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard ($5,580); Indiana Recovery Alliance ($5,420); New Hope for Families ($5,280); Boys and Girls Clubs of Bloomington ($5,180); Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Central Indiana ($5,080); Community Kitchen of Monroe County, Inc. ($4,880); Area 10 Agency on Aging ($4,630); Sojourn House Inc. ($4,280); Monroe County Humane Association ($4,120).
Sophia Travis grants are drawn from the county’s general fund. Since 2008, when $95,000 in grants were awarded, the total has tended to increase a few thousand dollars every year. Last year’s total amount was $130,000.
At Wednesday’s meeting of the commissioners, councilor Cheryl Munson presented the proposed awards on behalf of the county council and the committee that worked on the recommendations. In addition to Munson, the committee included councilors Trent Deckard and Kate Wiltz, as well as two members of the public, Ryan Boyce and Josh Johnson.
Munson told the commissioners that a total of $260,000 had been requested this year for various projects. That’s twice as much as the available amount. Year after year, the requests exceed the available funds by a lot, Munson said.
Munson said the committee is recommending that next year the amount for the awards be increased by more than the percentage increase in property tax revenues, which has been used in the past.
In 2013, the grant program was renamed in honor of Sophia Travis, who served on the county council from 2004 to 2008. She worked as a councilor to “assure the applications for the limited funds available for support would be considered in a fair, even-handed and transparent process,” according to the renaming resolution.
Table: 2021 Sophia Travis Awards by Amount
|Agency||Use of Award||Amount|
|Beacon Inc.||COVID-19 Homeless Prevention Project||$7,060|
|Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard||Emergency Food Pantry Support||$5,580|
|Indiana Recovery Alliance||Sharps Disposal Box Community Safety Program||$5,420|
|New Hope for Families||Housing First For Families||$5,280|
|Boys and Girls Clubs of Bloomington||Flood Damage Recovery at the Lincoln Street Club||$5,180|
|Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Central Indiana||DEI – Recruitment & Mentoring One-To-One||$5,080|
|Community Kitchen of Monroe County, Inc.||Food Purchase||$4,880|
|Area 10 Agency on Aging||Endwright East Active Living Community Center||$4,630|
|Sojourn House Inc.||Residential and Outreach Program Renovation||$4,280|
|Monroe County Humane Association||Outreach Transportation Vehicle Grant||$4,120|
|South Central Community Action Program||JT Memorial Health Fund||$4,080|
|Hoosier Hills Food Bank||COVID Food Project 2021||$3,990|
|Indiana Solar for All (Center for Sustainable Living Inc.)||Solar for Monroe County||$3,990|
|Wheeler Mission Ministries, Inc.||Intervention Services – Shelter Diversion||$3,980|
|Middle Way House||Re-Keying New Wings Emergency Shelter||$3,620|
|Bloomington Meals on Wheels, Inc.||Groceries to Go||$3,580|
|Planned Parenthood||Patient Financial Assistance for Preventative Health Care Services||$3,580|
|Monroe County United Ministries||Maintaining Self-Sufficiency||$3,500|
|All-Options||Hoosier Diaper Program||$3,410|
|Centerstone of Indiana||Welcome Home to Centerstone||$3,380|
|Susie’s Place (Hendricks County Child Advocacy Center Inc.||Susie’s Place Furniture||$3,220|
|Amethyst House||Residential Food||$3,050|
|Bloomington St. Vincent de Paul||200 Plastic Dressers for Children||$3,040|
|Hotels for Hope Inc.||Office Space||$2,830|
|Lotus Education & Arts Foundation||Lanterns Remixed||$2,830|
|Youth First, Inc.||Monroe County Youth First Social Work Program||$2,820|
|New Leaf New Life, Inc.||Transition Support Materials||$2,630|
|Hoosiers Feeding the Hungry||$2,620|
|Courage to Change Sober Living||Fresh Start Rent Scholarship Fund||$2,580|
|Team First Book-Monroe County||Increasing Diversity and Inclusion through Books||$2,580|
|WFHB (Bloomington Community Radio Inc.)||WFHB Event Broadcasting||$2,520|
|Community Justice & Mediation Center||Program and Outreach Materials, Supplies, & Training Scholarships||$2,440|
|MidWay Music Speaks||Girls Rock Bloomington Camp & Workshop Series||$2,420|
|The Bloomington Project School||Project: Place||$2,420|
|Catholic Charities of Bloomington Counseling Services||Trauma Training and Expansion Project||$2,370|
|Alexandra’s Food Drive Inc.||2022 Food Drive||$2,250|
|Grace Center, Inc.||Food Purchase||$2,240|
|Writing for a Change Foundation, Inc.||Young Women’s Summer Writing Camps 2022||$1,920|