The city of Cortez will be more generous in 2015 after municipal leaders agreed to increase its community grant program by 10 percent.
The city recently received $117,100 in grant requests from 33 organizations. Municipal leaders reviewed each funding request on Tuesday, Sept. 14, and awarded a total of $33,000 in grant funding to 26 community-service groups.
The city had budgeted $30,000 for 2015 grants, but council members agreed this week to increase next year’s overall funding to meet the $33,000 awards.
“There are more and more needy people every year,” said council member Tom Butler.
Both the Four Corners Child Advocacy Center (FCAC), with a $2,000 request, and Grace’s Soup Kitchen (GSP), with a $1,000 request, were the only organizations to receive full funding from the city.
“It’s wonderful to know that we received our full funding request,” said FCAC executive director Rose Jergens. “It demonstrates the city has faith in us.”
For more than two decades, FCAC has worked to strengthen the community’s response to child abuse and neglect. Each year, the nonprofit agency aids about 300 victims, ranging from toddlers to teens.
Jergens said FCAC aims to coordinate services for child abuse victims through a three-prong approach – safety, healing and support. The grant funding will be used to promote Child Abuse Awareness Month in April, she said.
Leigh Waggoner, priest at St. Barnabas Church, said monetary donations from the city and others help to offset unpredictable food donations.
“We’re really grateful for the city’s continued support,” she said.
Sponsored by St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, Grace’s Soup Kitchen has served about 12,000 free lunches annually to hungry residents for more than 15 years.
More than 30 volunteers help prepare and serve lunches on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
Municipal grant proposals were required to include mission statements, goals and objectives, multiyear plans, purpose of requests and financial statements.