According to Mountain Empire Older Citizens Inc., the selection was made by a national board consisting of representatives from the Salvation Army, American Red Cross, Council of Jewish Federations, Catholic Charities USA, National Council of Churches of Christ, and United Way of America.
The national board provides administration and fiscal agent responsibilities for the funds and is charged to distribute money appropriated by Congress to help expand the capacity of food and shelter programs in high-need areas of the nation. MEOC said a local board made up of local civic leaders, service providers and clergy will determine how the funds awarded to Wise County are to be distributed. The local board will be responsible for recommending agencies to receive money and any additional funds available.
Under the terms of the grant, local governmental or private voluntary organizations chosen to receive funds must be nonprofit, have an accounting system and conduct an annual audit, practice non-discrimination, have demonstrated the ability to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs, and if they are a private voluntary organization, must have a voluntary board.
Qualifying local organizations are urged to apply. Wise County has distributed Emergency Food and Shelter funds previously with MEOC, The Advocacy Center, Appalachian Family Ministries, Family Crisis Support Services, the Wise County Food Bank and the Food Bank of St. Paul as participants. For further information on the program, or to submit a request for available funds, contact E. Dennis Horton at MEOC at (276) 523-4202, or apply in writing by Monday to P.O. Box 888, Big Stone Gap, VA 24219.