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July 6, 2005

Gov. Blagojevich announces $123,000 in Emergency Shelter Grants to expand essential services for area’s homeless in West Central Illinois

CHICAGO – Continuing his efforts to assist people across Illinois and especially those most often left behind, Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today announced grants totaling more than $123,000 to support emergency shelters and non-profits that serve homeless and near-homeless people throughout West Central Illinois.  The state’s support comes through the Emergency Shelter Grant Program, one of the Governor’s key initiatives designed to help local communities provide critical assistance to their poor and underserved populations.      
“Whether it be in job training, entrepreneurship, education or a great many other areas, our goal is always to provide citizens with the tools they need to build better lives for themselves and their families.  For the poor and underserved in our state, the challenge may be greater but the goal is the same.  The Emergency Shelter Grant program allows us to partner with social service agencies that are delivering essential services such as food, clothing, housing and health care to the homeless.  In doing so, we are strengthening the tremendous work they do and providing the homeless with essential building blocks for a better tomorrow,” Gov. Blagojevich said.    
The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) administers the Emergency Shelter Grant Program from funding provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  The support enables community-based organizations to rehabilitate, renovate and operate emergency shelters, as well as provide essential services for the homeless and prevention assistance to those at risk of homelessness.  Funding is available to units of general local government on behalf of not-for-profit organizations and directly to not-for-profit organizations through a competitive grant application process.
Organizations in the West Central region who will receive funding include:
Organization                                 City                             Amount
Samaritan Well, Inc.                    Macomb                     $10,155
Madonna House                          Quincy                        $59,000
Quanada                                        Quincy                         $10,000
Salvation Army                             Quincy                         $44,000
“Gov. Blagojevich and I believe that forming partnerships with community organizations such as these are essential to ensuring the most efficient use of our limited fiscal resources.  The Emergency Shelter Grant Program is another example of how effective these grassroots partnerships can be in making a tangible difference in people’s lives,” State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) said.
Program funds may be used to implement one or more of the following activities:
  • Rehabilitation, renovation or conversion of buildings for use as emergency shelters;
  • New or expanded essential services provided by the not-for-profit organization in connection with direct services such as job training, substance abuse counseling, health and educational services;
  • Homelessness prevention activities, such as short-term subsidies to help cover the cost of rent and utility expenses, security deposits or first month's rent, or other innovative programs and activities designed to prevent homelessness; and,
  • Operation or maintenance expenses directly related to the emergency shelter.
“The Emergency Shelter Grant Program is a tremendous resource because it not only is designed to help provide food and shelter to those who are currently homeless, but also to support direct services such as job training, counseling and education that are proven to be critical prevention tools.  By supporting these community organizations, we’re strengthening the vital resources they provide on the frontlines each day and, hopefully, giving them greater capacity to make a more lasting impact in the lives of the people they serve,” DCEO Director Jack Lavin said.  


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