2015 Phase II Grant Recipients
Cherokee Health Systems
Project Title: Medical Respite Care for the Homeless
Cherokee will set up a respite care center for the homeless population at Knox Area Rescue Ministries to provide care for clients who have been discharged from the hospital but who are too sick to go back out on the street. Cherokee will provide necessary medical, mental health and other services in house at KARM. Funding will provide for space and equipment as well as training for establishing admissions/discharge procedure/policies, care criteria and protocols with hospitals to produce better outcomes and reduce costs of scarce community services.
Knox Area Rescue Ministries
Project Title: Rapid Mental Health and A&D Services for Our Most Vulnerable and Forgotten
A sustainable model has been developed to provide rapid services to the homeless who arrive at KARM needing treatment, counseling and training for reentry back into the community. A new counseling center, start-up provision of counseling services, care coordination and new software will be established to provide these services. Existing counseling centers will partner to provide on-site access to care. These services will create stability and dignity to this population and give them greater opportunities to leave homelessness.
Knoxville Habitat for Humanity
Project Title: Habitat for Heroes
Approximately 1,200 veterans live in Knox County. Many of them face difficulties securing gainful employment when returning to civilian life and are in need of safe, decent and affordable housing for themselves and their families. Knoxville’s Habitat for Humanity will seek to identify working veterans whose income falls below the 80% average median income. Through its homeowner education program qualified participants will be given the opportunity to move into rehabbed Habitat homes on a rent-to-own basis. Rent will be applied to purchase while they complete their sweat equity hours eliminating their immediate housing needs and providing the opportunity for permanent home ownership.
YMCA of East Tennessee
Project Title: Alzheimer’s and Dementia Wellness Program
The Y will implement a program, now being piloted, at all five of their branches which will focus on improving the health of those with Alzheimer’s (particularly early onset), dementia and other neurological diseases. Exercise has a direct, measurable benefit both in prevention as well as slowing the progression of these diseases. Specialized equipment and training will be offered. An exercise program has been developed where participants work out four times per week, emphasizing balance, agility, cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength and cognitive exercise to help a growing group of people improve their lives and quality of life. Supporting classes and support groups for caregivers and families will also be offered.
A-1 Learning Connections
Project Title: SMART Institute Healthy Living
A-1 SMART Institute serves 110 Austin East High and Vine Middle School students through activities that promote physical activity and healthy eating habits. Since the majority of students are African American living in the diabetes belt of America, they are 25% more likely to develop diabetes. This funding will provide a program where students will participate in 60 minutes per day of consistent, intentionally-scheduled cardiovascular, muscle and bone strengthening activities with an emphasis on healthy eating habits. Surveys have shown that healthier life choices will result in better grades/GPAs, staying in school, on-time graduation, increased lifetime health.
Project Title: Autism Site Knoxville: A Community Center for Information, Education, Recreation & Support
With the rate of autism diagnosis continually on the rise, a growing local population of children and adults with autism and care givers need a home away from home where they can find autism specific resources, support, understanding, education and recreation. While excellent autism providers are available in the Knoxville, many parents have difficulty finding them due to the lack of a local physical central hub for autism information distribution. Autism Site Knoxville will launch a community resource center, utilizing its website and community partners to enhance parent networking and provide a community-managed directory of available resources. By early 2016 a physical parent-driven center will be open to provide resource distribution, training, support groups and social opportunities.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Tennessee
Project Title: Mentor 2.0
A cohort of 60 to 70 low-income ninth grade students at South-Doyle High School will be recruited to participate in Mentor 2.0 to provide vulnerable children with the support and guidance they need to graduate from high school and achieve success in college and the workforce. Mentor 2.0 represents a new strategy to engage students featuring weekly classroom instruction led by a BBBS facilitator along with weekly email reinforcement lessons. Mentor 2.0 focuses on the non-cognitive skills related to motivation, integrity and interpersonal communication so important in the workplace. At the completion of each skill group, students and mentors will meet for an in-person activity further emphasizing these newly acquired skills. Ideally, the mentor/mentee match will continue through high school graduation and into college or technical school. A new cohort will be selected each year to continue engaging students in this training.
Feeding the Orphans
Project Title: MAN UP at Zion
Man up at Zion will provide fatherless boys of the greater Knoxville area a multi-day outdoor adventure camp experience where these young men will be challenged to overcome the lack of father leadership and dared to allow God to rewrite their future. Partnerships with community organizations, counselors and ministry leaders will establish mentorships that will last long after their time at camp. The adventure camp, in addition to physical activity, will provide character-building skills and with mentor support, equip fatherless boys with a healthy view of manhood, create worthy life goals and reroute their futures.
Girl Talk, Inc.
Project Title: Expanding Our Voice – Expanding Our Impact
Girl Talk will create a partnership with Great Schools Partnership to provide after school programming in 10 Knox County Community Schools. The program’s aim is to end the cycle of teenage pregnancy, drugs, underage drinking and poverty through education and mentorships. Girls will be challenged to reach their full potential for economic self-sufficiency by completing high school and going on to college. Deeply rooted needs will be addressed to prevent girls from making poor choices that can be life altering and instead create competent and prepared leaders for tomorrow.
New Hope Blount County Children’s Advocacy Center
Project Title: Creating an Innovative Practice for Traumatized Children in East Tennessee
New Hope aims to expand their services and create a state-of-the-art comprehensive trauma center in East Tennessee for children and families who have experienced trauma. Services and treatment to traumatized children will be offered through the most advanced, proven therapeutic approaches. The comprehensive center will allow children to receive all-inclusive treatment in one location. Partnerships with the Blount County Child Protective Investigative Team along with other donors, partners and volunteers will bring healthy child development and healing to the lives of hundreds of children each year.
True Purpose Ministries
Project Title: Providing True Purpose in Our Communities
True Purpose aims to build a Graduate House to provide a structured, positive environment for graduates who have successfully completed its comprehensive addiction treatment program. Some graduates are able upon graduation to integrate back into their community. Others find leaving the stability of a treatment program overwhelming amidst this newfound freedom. The Graduate House will provide a year of transitional living where participants will be provided additional counseling, job skills and training to equip them for an independent life. The graduate house will help prevent relapses and wasted resources, promote community involvement and continued growth and recovery which will result in empowered lives and independence.