By MORGAN FRISCH
Recorder News Staff
FONDA — Montgomery County has been awarded funds to assist with economic disasters such as needing food, shelter, or funds to prevent eviction.
The Emergency Food and Shelter Program National Board awarded the county $24,681 to supplement emergency food and shelter programs. The national board is chaired by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and consists of representatives from the Salvation Army, the American Red Cross, Catholic Charities USA and several other organizations. A local board made up of agencies throughout Montgomery County will determine how the funds are allocated.
Deputy Executive Director Ann Black, of Fulmont Community Action Agency, one of the agencies on the board, said applications from public or private voluntary agencies interested in applying for funds had to be postmarked by July 1. Hand-delivered applications must be received by today at 4 p.m. Proposals must be submitted to the attention of Fred Quist, Montgomery County United Way 1166, Riverfront Center, Amsterdam.
She said the board will review the submitted proposals and discuss how the money will be allocated. In order to receive funds, criteria regarding poverty statistics, economic situations and unemployment figures were reviewed over a 12 month period, Black explained.
“Whether we get an allocation is based on certain criteria,” she said.
Last year, the funds assisted four different agencies with various services. Black said the funds could be used to help pay for one month of an overdue rent bill for someone facing eviction or to help stock a local emergency food pantry.
“Everybody’s budget is limited and any little bit helps, actually,” Black said. “It does provide assistance to those in economic need.”
Executive Director of the Montgomery County Office for the Aging David Jordan said about a half a dozen organizations in the county come together to review how the funds should be utilized. He said agencies that submit requests explain in the application what the funds would be used for regarding emergency shelter or food situations.
“Our agency uses it for emergency meals for seniors,” Jordan said. “If there’s a storm or something and our drivers who do home-delivered meals can’t make it, we deliver shelf-stable meals ahead of time.”
He said it would also be used to stock the food pantry, but different agencies use it for different resources. Jordan said grants are critical for the food pantry at the OFA.
“For a small amount of money I think it has a tremendous impact on the community,” he said.