YWCA says grant monies save city millions in various ways

Tuesday, July 19, 2011 at 7:45pm

Despite receiving almost twice as much in Community Enhancement Fund grant dollars as the No. 2 recipient — and considerably more monies than the 22 other non-profit entities benefiting from the Metro-overseen program — the YWCA of Nashville and Middle Tennessee can justify the grant total as the nonprofit saves the city significant expenses related to domestic violence, according to its top official.

Pat Shea, YWCA president and CEO, said the $258,300 the nonprofit will receive via Metro, will “save the city millions of dollars in court fees, police time and health care costs.”

The Metro Council Tuesday night approved the $1.8 million in CEF grants Mayor Karl Dean had recommended.

The YWCA, which offers shelter and support to women and their children, received considerably more than the other recipients but not as much as the $306,300 it received last year. 

“The shelter budget is $1.6 million, so [the CEF grant] is a huge piece of the budget,” Shea said.

Last week, Dean’s office announced 23 local nonprofits were recommended to receive the $1.8 million in CEF grants. Five of the 23 received $100,000 or more, with the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands as the No. 2 recipient, in terms of total dollars, with $153,900.

In comparison, in 2010, 20 nonprofits received an equal total of $1.8 million. However, seven of the 20 received $100,000 or more.

For this year, the Mayor’s Office received 43 applications. Six were found ineligible, 37 were reviewed and 23, as noted, were awarded. About $2.5 million was requested.

DarKenya W. Waller, managing attorney at the Nashville office of the Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands, said the society received $180,000 last year. It requested $194,000 this year and received $153,900.

“With the economic times we’re dealing with, we expected there would be some decrease,” Waller said. “We absolutely are [pleased with the amount received]. The city has been such a great partner in the fight against domestic violence.”

Bonna Johnson, Dean spokeswoman, said the grants for each of three service categories were reviewed and scored by independent review panels. Each review panel was responsible for determining which agencies would be recommended for funding and the amount of that funding.

“The review panels held open meetings to make those determinations, and all applicants were invited to observe,” Johnson said. “Typical factors in making those determinations included, but were not limited to, the amount of funding available for distribution; the application scores; the amount of funding requested by each applicant; the numbers of people each one serves; the types of services being offered; the gaps in the service delivery system; [and] the overall benefit to the community.”

Grants were available to Nashville nonprofits in three service categories: afterschool programs, domestic violence and community service.

Funding recommendations for afterschool programs total $675,000 and include Backfield in Motion, Inc., $87,800; Boys and Girls Club of Middle Tennessee, $49,600; Fannie Battle Day Home for Children, Inc., $67,400; Hearing Bridges, $26,500; Martha O'Bryan Center, $117,100; McNeilly Center for Children, $68,600; Monroe Harding, Inc., $49,200; Oasis Center, Inc., $46,100; PENCIL Foundation, $75,400; and Vanderbilt University (Center for Health Services), $87,300.

Recommendations in the domestic violence category total $675,000 and include Family & Children's Services, $77,600; Legal Aid Society of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands, $153,900; Morning Star Sanctuary, Inc., $108,300; Nashville YWCA, $258,300; Tennessee Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence, $31,500; and The Mary Parrish Center, $45,400.

Recommendations for community service grants total $450,000 and include Big Brothers of Nashville, $97,000; FiftyForward, $76,000; Nashville Area Chapter American Red Cross, $32,500; Nashville CARES, $30,000; Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee, Inc., $100,000; The Arc of Davidson County, $63,600; and United Way of Middle Tennessee, Inc., $50,900.