Earlier this year, area emergency food and shelter programs received $21,773 in federal funding under the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program (EFSP).
At the time, local board chairperson Sandi Goebel said it was the largest amount the program had received.
Now, those same programs will be receiving more money in the future.
Goebel informed The Brazil Times recently $10,049 in additional funding had been awarded to the programs.
"I'm surprised," Goebel said. "This is a bonus."
Goebel said the money was awarded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). The funds were made by a national board chaired by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency and consisted of representatives from the American Red Cross; Catholic Charities, USA; National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A.; The Salvation Army; United Jewish Communities; and United Way of America.
The local board is now in charge of distributing the additional funds to help expand the programs.
Goebel said the area was in need of additional funding. For example, she said the Food Pantry in Clay City was only open once a week last year. However, an increase in need has forced the pantry to be open twice a week this year.
"This is based purely on unemployment statistics in the area," Goebel said. "It's for people who have been laid off and who need food."
Under the terms of the grant from the national board, local agencies chosen to receive funds must do the following:
* Be private voluntary non-profits or units of government,
* Be eligible to receive federal funds,
* Have an accounting system,
* Practice nondiscrimination,
* Have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs, and
* Have a voluntary board if they are a private voluntary organization.
Goebel said Clay County has distributed emergency food and shelter funds to the Clay County Benevolent Association, Clay County Emergency Food Pantry, Southern Clay County Food Pantry, Southern Clay Share and Care, Clay County Emergency Cupboard and Closet (Senior Center), and the Wesley Chapel Food Pantry.
Agencies interested in applying for ARRA Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds must contact Goebel by calling 443-0025.