Due to the incredible generosity of an anonymous donor, The Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation (TGKVF) has for the second year awarded $1 million within 12 months to organizations serving marginalized populations with dental health and emergency aid needs. With this support, more than 27,000 people are being served with food, dental services, addiction recovery, utility and housing assistance, and so much more. With deep gratitude to TGKVF’s anonymous donor, 73,232 items are being provided, 29,828 things are being built or improved, and 18,228 people are learning from presentations and direct client case management. According to Michelle Foster, President and CEO, “TGKVF appreciates the opportunity to partner with this special donor to make life better for so many in our community.” Read further for more detail about each of the awards that were granted in 2018.
Dental Health Grants
Kanawha County Dental Health Council, Inc.-Kanawha County Dental Health project: $50,000
This funding supports the dental health of low-income children by addressing pain and oral infection via regular dental visits. In many cases, school hygienists screen and assess the dental needs of students and find that children are experiencing painful unaddressed issues. Quite often, students’ families have limited transportation options or financial means to provide for their oral health. Through this grant, low-income children receive increased access to dental services.
West Virginia Health Right, Inc.-Dental Care for Impoverished Adults: $175,000
West Virginia Health Right is a free and charitable clinic serving more than 27,000 West Virginians annually with medical, behavioral, and dental needs. The funding received through this grant offsets the cost of personnel salaries for a mobile dental unit and provides consumable supplies for the onsite clinic in Charleston as well as for the mobile dental unit. Residents from Boone and Clay counties who face economic or geographic barriers that prevent them from accessing the onsite clinic will be served through the mobile dental unit.
Charleston Area Medical Center Health Education & Research Institute, Inc.-Dental Assistance for CAMC Cancer Patients: $50,000
This funding provides direct dental care to low-income, uninsured adult cancer patients in need of dental clearance to complete cancer treatment. This care will encourage patients to continue to practice good oral health while providing them with the resources to do so. This dental clearance will improve treatment and overall oral health.
Family Care-Oral Health Services for Women in Recovery Year 2: $80,000
Now in its second year of support, this project allows Family Care to continue dental programming at Recovery Point of Charleston, a 92-bed facility providing women with long-term, residential recovery services. With this funding, Family Care provides preventive and restorative oral health services to women in recovery from opioid addiction.
West Virginia Oral Health Coalition-Smiles Across West Virginia Sealant Program: $10,000
Project funding focuses on improving children’s oral health via a dental sealant program. When this dental sealant is painted on the chewing surface of back molars, it can prevent cavities for many years. Funding supports school-based dental programs, private dentists, and programs working in collaboration to provide dental sealants to disadvantaged children in Boone, Clay, Fayette, Kanawha, Lincoln, and Putnam counties.
Cabin Creek Health Systems-Cabin Creek Smiles: $30,000
Funding for this project helps provide direct care for low-income, uninsured children who are not eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). With this grant, Cabin Creek Health Systems works to connect children with a dental home in addition to assisting adult low-income patients with oral health services such as cleanings, fillings, crowns, partials, and dentures.
West Virginia University Foundation-WVU School of Dentistry Rural Outreach for Lincoln County: $55,000
Funding supports the WVU dental school’s work with dentists serving Lincoln County residents to facilitate the provision of oral health care for those without dental insurance or means of payment. This work will also occur in select offices in Chapmanville and Charleston.
New River Health Dental-New River Heath Association’s Fayette County Oral Health Project: $50,000
This grant supports the improvement of oral health for an underserved population in Fayette County, providing adult preventive care, root canals, and fillings. This program will also expand services to reach underserved school-age children who do not have access to dental services due to transportation issues.
Emergency Aid Grants
Women’s Health Center of West Virginia, Inc.-Patient Electronic Record System Server Replacement Project: $16,268
With this grant, the Women’s Health Center replaced an electronic medical record (EMR) system server that holds critical medical data and home visitation records of low-income clients. This system also powers practice management, patient medical records, appointment scheduling, and billing functions. Without its replacement, the old system may have failed at any moment and severely hampered services to marginalized women.
Religious Coalition for Community Renewal, Inc.-Samaritan Inn: $14,221
This funding supported bathroom repairs at Samaritan Inn, a transitional home for homeless men and those who are in recovery from addiction. Without the bathroom’s repairs, water would have continued to leak onto lower levels, presenting a safety hazard for residents and staff.
Clay County Commission-Clay County Nutrition for the Elderly: $16,570
During severe flooding in June 2016, the foundation of a building used to prepare, serve, and deliver meals to elderly residents was damaged. This building, owned by the Clay County Commission and rented to the elderly assistance agency for $1 annually, is the only place that provides nutrition services to seniors within the county. The funding assisted with the building’s repairs so that meal services can continue.
Tyler Mountain/Cross Lanes Community Services (TMCLCS)-Handicap Ramp Construction at the TMCLCS Food Pantry: $2,800
Project funding supported the construction of a handicap ramp at the Cross Lanes food pantry, which serves financially disadvantaged individuals, families, and seniors. With this increased access to the pantry, those who require services can safely transport pantry orders.
Gabriel Project of West Virginia-Metro Valley Chapter Office Computer: $1,200
The Gabriel Project of West Virginia provides immediate and practical assistance to low-income pregnant women and to families with infants and children two years of age and under. With this grant, the organization was able to purchase a laptop and docking station to document client services. Prior to receiving funding, staff members used personal computers for this task.
Putnam Career and Technical Center-Adult Student Emergency Aid Fund: $5,000
With this grant, skilled and academically talented students who are at risk of not finishing their education due to unmet living expense needs are supported with emergency aid funding. Funding for transportation is often awarded while housing, utilities, and food costs are also considered.
YWCA Sojourner’s-Shelter for Homeless Women & Families Assistance: $30,000
The YWCA Sojourner’s Shelter provides a safe place for women and families experiencing homelessness and for those transitioning out of the shelter who need assistance with household necessities. Funding from this award supports individuals and families who need help with rental deposits and rent, utilities and deposits, and other vital necessities such as bedding, bed frames, mattresses, towels, washcloths, kitchen supplies, and other household items. Funding will also be used for replacement stair treads throughout the facility and other essential equipment and technology.
Metro Emergency Operations Center of Kanawha County Metro 911-Metro 911 Acquisition of KENWOOD NX-5300 handheld radios: $10,000
The KENWOOD NX-5300 handheld radios will serve as instantaneous backup to the dispatch radio consoles that are the lifeline of communication for police, firefighters, and medics in the field. In the event of technological failures or other events, these handheld radios turn on within seconds and allow dispatchers and supervisors to monitor several radio frequencies simultaneously.
West Virginia Child Advocacy Network-Child Advocacy Center Emergency Aid: $15,000
The West Virginia Child Advocacy Network provides guidance, protection, and help to children and families affected by abuse. Funding will provide low-income families with direct assistance related to their emergency needs, including paying rent and filling prescriptions. Often, the primary financial supporter of a family is the perpetrator, which results in an immediate loss of income, insurance, transportation, and perhaps even the family home. In addition, these emergency funds will allow the child advocacy centers to make building or essential equipment repairs if unexpected failures occur within the center.
Children’s Home Society of WV-Permanency Program for Boone and Lincoln Counties: $80,000
With this funding, the Children’s Home Society, a child welfare organization serving West Virginia, is working to increase the number of licensed Foster Care and Certified Kinship Care homes by 32 homes. In Boone County, 144 children (1 in 36) are in state custody with only 61 foster homes available. In Lincoln County, 129 children (1 in 37) are in state custody with only 112 foster homes are available. These rural counties have fewer community resources, including fewer established foster families. With this grant’s support, Children’s Home Society will offer additional foster family trainings.
Camp Appalachia-Camp Appalachia Cabin Renovation: $31,638
Funding will support a camp experience at little or no cost for children ages 7 to 17 who may be at high risk for destructive life choices. These campers include those who have been affected by the opioid epidemic, those in the foster care system, and those who have one or more parents incarcerated. Currently a summer day camp, funding will help with cabin upgrades and repairs to allow the camp to operate year round.
Mission West Virginia-Carry On Project: $10,000
In collaboration with its Frameworks program, which finds families for children in the foster care system, this grant will enable Mission West Virginia to assist caregivers in covering the costs of basic necessities for the youth in their care. There is often not financial assistance to provide care for additional children for a caregiver who may already be on a fixed income. This emergency assistance for youth care will help to alleviate strain on the household budget so that funds can be directed for food, housing, and utility costs.
Community Care of West Virginia-Improving Outcomes in Clay County via Fitness and Social Determinants of Health Interventions: $30,000
With this grant, Community Care of West Virginia, a federally qualified health clinic, will replace equipment at its free fitness center adjacent to the Clay primary office. The clinic saw improvements in patients’ BMI, fasting blood glucose, blood pressure, and depression while using the fitness center, and now sees direct consequences due to the lack of access to the equipment. The funding also allows for social determinants interventions, which provide direct assistance to low-income families with emergency utility and prescription needs.
Cross Lanes United Methodist Church-Showers and Laundry Room for Emergency Shelter and Work Teams: $20,000
Funding for this project supports the construction of six showers and a laundry room at the Cross Lanes United Methodist Church, which also houses a basic needs assistance program. Having these facilities will allow the church to function as an emergency shelter, host disaster recovery teams, and serve as a relief station for flood, fire, and other natural disaster survivors.
Risen Lord Catholic Church-Risen Lord Food Pantry and Social Concern Project: $10,000
Funding supports the Risen Lord Catholic Church’s Food Pantry and Backpack Program in Clay County. The program serves 120 elementary school students weekly with backpacks containing food items and snacks. For low-income families, the weekends can pose food insecurity concerns since children are not receiving breakfast and lunch at their schools. Requests for food have increased and the Food Pantry is now serving 150 families each month. This grant provides for additional food and emergency supplies.
Pro Kids, Inc.-Charleston Afterschool Learning and Adventures: $35,000
With this grant, Pro Kids, an afterschool program serving at-risk youth, will launch additional afterschool program sites throughout urban neighborhoods in Charleston. This collaborative effort between Kanawha County Schools and three established afterschool programs will prevent a disruption of services caused by the recent closure of an area afterschool program. Funding will support the placement of up to 90 children at additional after school sites. Without this support, these children would not have a safe place to go after school.
Kanawha Institute for Social Research & Action, Inc. (KISRA)-KISRA Emergency Aid Project: $43,000
Funding will support the continuation of the Emergency Services Program that supports low-income and working poor individuals and families in Kanawha County. The Program will include utility assistance for those with a current disconnect or shut-off notice, rental assistance for those with eviction notices from a landlord, food assistance provided by gift cards to local budget stores, and medication assistance to include maintenance medication for chronic diseases.
United Way of Central West Virginia-WV211: $41,000
The United Way 211 system provides free and confidential information and referral for people throughout West Virginia struggling with health and human services related emergencies. The system operates 24 hours a day and seven days a week. Funding will support the promotion of the value of the service among those in crisis. Now housed and managed under United Way of West Virginia collaborative, this funding will strengthen this vital information and referral system.
West Virginia Health Right, Inc.-HOPE (Healing Opportunities for Parents Everywhere): $38,000
West Virginia Health Right is the state’s largest free and charitable clinic. This funding supports the clinic in providing behavioral health and addiction services to those in recovery and active addiction. Services include medically assisted treatment, individualized recovery coaching, referral to inpatient treatment, access to birth control, health education, and medical/dental/pharmaceutical care for 75 low-income uninsured or underinsured women and men who identify as drug addicted, are of child bearing age, or have recently had a child. All of these services will be provided at no charge to the patient.
Manna Meal-So the Hungry Can Eat: $49,303
Manna Meal is Charleston’s largest soup kitchen and serves meals 365 days a year, no questions asked. This funding provides direct access to emergency food and two prepared meals per day for low-income families, senior citizens, the homeless, and individuals with disabilities primarily in Kanawha County. Funding will also replace essential equipment such as kitchen appliances.
West Virginia State University Research & Development Corporation-Freedom to Recover: $1,000
West Virginia State University is collaborating with multiple agencies to address the region’s opioid addiction crisis. Funding will provide health services to Kanawha County residents who are in recovery from substance use/abuse. The twelve-month project will address inadequate dental care, housing, nutrition education, workforce development, parenting, and other issues the target population faces.