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Claiborne awarded emergency food, shelter funds

A significant chunk of federal monies will be dropped into the Claiborne county coffers, courtesy of the Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The county is in line for $11,849 in Phase 37 funding and an additional $16,893 in CARES Act dollars via the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program.

The Board consists of representatives from the American Red Cross, Catholic Charities USA, the National Council of Churches of Christ USA, the Jewish Federations of North America, the Salvation Army and the United Way Worldwide.

The job of the Local Board is to distribute funds to help expand food and shelter programs where needed across the country. Each Local Board normally includes the county mayor, the director of the Economic & Community Development Office and the various city mayors within each county. This board determines just how the funds will be distributed among the emergency food and shelter programs that are managed by the various local service agencies.

The Local Board is also responsible for recommending those agencies that receive funding along with any additional monies made available under the current phase of the program.

The grant spells out certain terms which must be followed in order for local agencies to receive funding. The agency must be a private, voluntary nonprofit or unit of government and must be eligible to receive federal funding. The agency must have an accounting system and have established a voluntary board.

It must have a proven track record in delivering emergency food and/or shelter. And, it must practice nondiscrimination.

In the past, the county has distributed emergency food and shelter funds through the East Tennessee Human Resources Agency (ETHRA), the Regional Education Center, ElderServe of Claiborne County and the Claiborne Hunger Ministry.

Other nonprofit organizations through which these types of funds have been funneled are Manna House, Servolution, the Clearfork Community Institute and the First Baptist Church of New Tazewell.

These agencies have been responsible for providing well over 9,000 meals.

Public or private voluntary agencies who are interested in applying for funding through the Emergency Food and Shelter Program may contact Anna Beth Walker at 423-626-2592 or by email at: directored@claibornecountytn.gov.

Nonprofits have until May 28 to submit their applications for consideration.