SWEETWATER COUNTY — Thanks to a $223,159 federal Community Service Block Grant (CSBG) awarded to the county, five agencies will continue to assist low-income individuals.
During a recent Sweetwater County Commission meeting, the commissioners unanimously approved the acceptance of a federal block grant that will assist five Sweetwater County agencies and seven programs.
The funding through the Wyoming Department of Health, Public Health division is for projects that were recommended by the Tripartite Board.
According to county Grants Manager Krisena Marshal, the funds must be used from October 1, 2021, through September 30, 2022. This particular grant does not require a cash match.
“So the purpose of this funding is to empower low income individuals to overcome the effects of poverty and support their progress towards greater self sufficiency,” Marchal said.
She said the funding will be passed through to subgrantees, who will use the funding for their low income programs. There are four subgrantee contracts and seven programs receiving the funding.
Rock Springs Young at Heart will be receiving funds in the amount of $65,400, for the purpose of providing childcare services while parents are working, seeking employment, or attending school, providing homemaker services to elderly and disabled individuals, and providing meals and special diet food to elderly and disabled individuals.
“I’d like to note that when we say parents are working, that is an important part of self sufficiency in that people are getting experience, trying to get more hours so that they can move up in the work place,” Marchal said.
Sweetwater County School District No. 1 will receive $31,423 for the Head Start program. This money will pay for a family advocate who will provide comprehensive case management to income eligible Head Start parents.
Sweetwater Family Resource Center will receive $35,000 to providing housing assistance, including emergency rent or utilities.
YWCA of Sweetwater County will receive $54,000 of the grant funding to provide childcare services while parents are working, seeking employment, or attending school, and to provide rent and deposit payments and utility payments to victims of domestic violence.
Finally, Sweetwater County Tripartite Board will receive $37,336 for operational costs, such as insurance, advertising, dues, travel, training, and this year it also will help pay for a needs assessment.
“Eligible clients must be at or below 125 percent of the federal poverty level,” Marchal said. “To put that into perspective, a single person making up to $16,100 would qualify for the program.”
Last year, it was increased to 200 percent of the federal poverty level due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She said the grant could later be changed to 200 percent, but for now the requirement remains at or below 125 percent of the federal poverty level.