City of Fort Walton Beach awards over $135,000 to ten local organizations

The Fort Walton Beach City Council awarded Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) to ten local organizations totaling $135,092 for the upcoming 2021-2022 fiscal year beginning October 1, 2021. 

Grant requests were reviewed by City staff and a Citizen’s Advisory Committee. Recommendations were presented to the City Council and accepted on August 10, 2021. 

The Community Development Block Grant Program provides annual federal grants to states, cities, and counties to develop viable urban communities by providing decent housing and a suitable living environment, and by expanding economic opportunities, principally for low- and moderate-income persons. 

The FWB organizations receiving this year’s grants include:

Okaloosa County Head Start McGriff Center Facility Improvements ($20,000) – Funding will be used to replace tile flooring throughout the facility. This project qualifies as a certified urgent need due to conditions posing a serious and immediate threat to the health or welfare of the community where other financial resources are not available.

Bridgeway Center Inc. ($10,000) – Funding will be used to provide free blood work for indigent clients who live in Fort Walton Beach.

Bridgeway Health Clinics ($9,192.80) – Funding will be used for lab work and medications for unemployed or homeless patients.

One Hopeful Place Facility Improvements ($22,600) – Funding will be used to cover operating costs, such as utilities and supplies, of the newly completed shelters.

Boys and Girls Club of the Emerald Coast ($5,000) – Funding will support an after-school program for nine months where over 100 youth will experience Youth Development Programming in three priority outcome areas: Academic Success, Healthy Lifestyles, and Character & Citizenship.

90Works Project90 ($8,100) – Funding will support a 90-day self-sufficiency program that will help residents achieve housing, income/employment, transportation, health, safety, and support. The goal is to help some residents move from subsidized to unsubsidized housing and/or secure gainful employment and improve health outcomes.

Hsu Foundation ($20,200) – Funding will allow the HSU Institute to provide low- and moderate-income students the opportunity to prepare for in-demand STEM careers that do not necessarily require a college degree. Funding will be used to provide equipment and curriculum to students.

Homelessness & Housing Alliance ($22,000) – Funding requested for this project will allow HHA to employ a case manager to work part-time with the Fort Walton Beach Police Department’s Homeless Outreach Team.

House of Deliverance Church of God in Christ, Bountiful Blessings Food Pantry ($7,500) – Funding will be used to construct a 12-foot x 24-foot portable building to store additional food at the organization.

S4P Synergy Inc. ($10,500) – Funding requested for this project will be used at the food pantry to install a metal awning and concrete pad for food deliveries and distribution, as well as a part time employee to aid in food distribution.

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