Last fiscal year, WAMY served 1,150 individuals. In their Housing program 71 individuals were served. With AMY funding WAMY hopes to increase these numbers by at least 20%. WAMY will establish a housing and development coalition to study and address the unique challenges of creating and maintaining safe, quality affordable housing in Avery, Mitchell, and Yancey Counties. The impact of this coalition will be magnified by the collaboration of multiple nonprofits. The coalition will develop strategies to address affordable and adequate housing needs of this region.
Since 2007, FEED-A-CHILD has provided food at no cost to children in schools who are food insecure. They feed 380 kids per week and last year provided 14,000 pounds of food to children in need.
With funding from AMY, this organization will be able to multiply their impact by having transportation and facility costs covered. With the purchase of a van financed by this grant, FEED-A-CHILD will provide healthy snacks between free/reduced lunches on Friday at school and Monday morning breakfasts. This will prevent students from falling asleep in class, becoming irritable and disruptive of other students, and improve their overall reading and math percentiles.
Reconciliation House offers food, clothing, household items and assistance with prescriptions, utilities, rent/mortgage payments, home heating assistance and other miscellaneous items through case-managed services. They currently serve roughly 1,550 individuals a month and with support from AMY anticipate nearly doubling that number. The Foundation has committed funds to help with the organization’s building expansion project. This building addition will expand infrastructure allowing for increased collaborative capacity, services, and programs available to families. The primary project goal is to combine services and education to increase client self-reliance and reduce or eliminate the need for assistance.
TRACTOR works with farmers to ensure increased access to fresh local foods. With funds from AMY, this organization will increase their reach and impact to underserved at-risk communities by offering CSA shares to the food insecure In addition, they will use grant funds to provide fresh locally grown produce to food pantries that serve the food insecure of Yancey, Mitchell, and Avery counties. TRACTOR currently serves 1,451 households and with these funds, expects to increase that number to 4,652 households.
Dig In! partners with local hunger relief agencies to provide fresh foods to those in need of food assistance. With AMY’s help, they will increase organic food production at their garden and provide nutrition and food education, while using methods that assess and involve multiple community partners and community volunteers. They will provide nutrition, food preparation, and farming education at the garden and Harvest Tables to equip individuals with the skills to eat healthy and grow their food, thereby improving both individual and community food security in Yancey County.
Through leadership capacity building, peer mentoring, and recreational challenging, The Jason Project “Grandfather Challenge” has a positive impact on at-risk middle and high school students. Schools help the organization identify students who suffer from mental and/or addiction problems, or who struggle from other challenges through no fault of their own. The AMY Wellness Foundation is committed to helping The Jason Project expand their program into Mitchell and Yancey Counties by linking them with other agencies and groups with common goals. This will help The Jason Project engage with an additional 50 kids.
For 22 years PATH has united our communities to work toward improving health of children and families in Mitchell and Yancey counties. With AMY funding, PATH will provide free after-school and summer programs for Mitchell and Yancey county youth, expand the highly successful Appalachian Youth to Youth program into Mitchell High School, and evaluate an impact and strategic plan to further expand its reach.
Expansion to Mitchell County: The YMCA of Avery County was granted funds toward expand of its Evidenced-Based Health Intervention (EBHI) project to Mitchell County. These funds fill a current human resource void: someone who could move things forward by scheduling and convening action committees, liaising with community leaders and stakeholders, assessing potential sites, and garnering capital support for construction or renovation. The intent with these funds is to also help the YMCA begin its committed goal of offering after school care programs in Mitchell County.
Y-Access Program in Avery County: Y-Access to provides the people of Avery County access to healthy living and health intervention programs that promote a healthy lifestyle, improve functioning and quality of life, prevent chronic health conditions, and prevent hospital readmissions. The Y will use grant funds to provide subsidies to low-income individuals and families that, due to affordability, could not access the YMCA healthy living.
With AMY funding, Blue Ridge Partnership for Children (BRPC) will continue to promote child well-being and prevent abuse and neglect of our counties’ children through the delivery of intensive home visiting services. The Foundation is excited to fund the expansion of the Mitchell-Yancey Healthy Families (MYHF) program into Avery County. The expanded program will be known as Blue Ridge Healthy Families.
BRPC will use evidence-based Healthy Families America model to reduce harsh parenting, neglect, physical and psychological abuse, and increase parents’ use of non-violent discipline; increase parental sensitivity and responsiveness; increase parental efficacy; reduce parental stress, and improve parents’ positive perceptions of parenting roles and responsibilities.
Mayland Community College Foundation was awarded funds to open an entrepreneur center to help residents start or grow their businesses. These funds will be used to: supplement and advance the educational, research, social/cultural, recreational, welfare, and financial facilities, provide activities/services for students, community, alumni, faculty and staff; and provide financial assistance including extending financial aid to persons desiring to attend the College, rendering assistance from net income and/or assets.
At its local office in Spruce Pine, Pisgah Legal Services provides legal interventions that improve the health and well-being of more than 500 low-income people annually in AMY counties. With the help from AMY, this organization will be able to employ one local attorney and one support staff who will; enable people to buy food and medicine by helping them address debt issues and secure public benefits and the Affordable Care Act health insurance subsidies; stop domestic violence, interpersonal violence, elder abuse, child abuse, or neglect by providing legal services to secure domestic violence protective orders and meet other needs such as housing, income, and child support; reduce isolation by helping people who are controlled by abusers, untreated for addiction due to lack of health insurance, or unemployed due to criminal records; and increase the supply of workforce/affordable housing, early childhood education slots, and employment opportunities by providing free legal support to non-profits, small businesses, and government entities.
Intermountain Children’s Services improves long-term academic individual outcomes for children in Head Start. They work collaboratively with a broad range of trained service providers to meet the individual needs of each child and family. With AMY funding, this organization will purchase vision screening equipment, screen 164 children within 45 days of enrollment and annually thereafter, train staff within 30 days of receiving the equipment, and educate parents at each screening and ongoing thereafter.
SafePlace educates and provides shelter to survivors to break the cycle of sexual assault and domestic violence within our community. With support from AMY, they will provide high-quality services to all clients by maintaining programs that are already in place to support survivors of domestic violence and sexual abuse. This goal will be achieved by educating the community about domestic violence, sexual abuse, interpersonal violence, human trafficking, teen dating violence, bullying and the work and resources provided to assist the survivors.
Transportation Authorities of Avery, Mitchell, and Yancey counties have joined forces in a collaboration that will improve transport services throughout our region. With support from AMY, this collaboration will purchase software for the coordination of transportation between counties. This will include tablets and mobile service in vehicles for accurate accountability, this software is crucial given the changes to Medicaid.
With support from AMY Wellness Foundation, MY Neighbors will continue to provide transportation for seniors in Mitchell and Yancey counties. They will now be able to reimburse their volunteer drivers who use their own vehicles to provide rides such as; doctor, dental and hospital visits, rehabilitation centers, exercise classes, grocery shopping, voting, and more. MY Neighbors also plans to use these funds to expand their services beyond Mitchell and Yancey counties.