Capital Area United Way announced Tuesday that 18 new nonprofits and 33 past partners will receive $4.7 million this year, while 11 organizations that have depended on its funding in the past will need to find new sources of money.
The announcement came after Capital Area United Way overhauled its system for giving money to nonprofits. The organization opened itself up this year to any agency interested in applying for money and used a competitive process to determine the winners and losers. In the past, it distributed money to a core group of nonprofits and rarely opened up its ranks.
Capital Area United Way is now giving money to 51 agencies, more than in the past. But the money is going to a smaller number of the nonprofits’ programs than in previous years.
The following 11 agencies will no longer receive money from Capital Area United Way: Girl Scouts; Capital Area Alliance for the Homeless; Baton Rouge Area Drug and Alcohol Center; Capital Area CASA Association; Hospice of Baton Rouge; Livingston Youth and Family Counseling; Istrouma Area Council Boy Scouts; Volunteers in Public Schools; Arc of East Ascension; City Year; and Teach for America.
VIPS and the Boy Scout leaders reported their losses of funding a couple weeks ago, saying they were shocked to lose the money and that they would look into new avenues for fundraising.
Around $500,000 is available to help Capital Area United Way’s previously funded programs as they transition off their past money. They can also apply again during the next funding cycle, which will not come until 2019.
“Quite frankly, it affects all of us,” said interim co-CEO Ralph Bender. “We would love to be able to fund them all, it’s just a matter of money. We are all feeling the pain of this in some way or another.”
But a slew of new agencies and programs also have drummed up excitement for the Capital Area United Way leaders. A group of more than 75 volunteers went through the applications of nonprofits looking for funding, and the volunteers evaluated how the proposals met new metrics that Capital Area United Way now requires.
The groups receiving Capital Area United Way money must fit into one of their main focuses: education, income stability, health and basic needs.
Some of the new programs in education include the Johns Hopkins University EBR Diplomas Now program, BREC’s Youth 360 After School Program and 100 Black Men’s Mentoring Across a Lifetime program.
In income stability, Capital Area United Way will now help the Capital Area ReEntry Coalition with re-entry support and the nonprofit group The Life of a Single Mom with financial classes on single parenting.
Capital Area United Way’s new health investment partners are the Volunteer Health Corps for a program to bridge primary care gaps and the Louisiana 4-H for an education and prevention “seeds for success” program.
Only one new agency will receive money for basic needs programs, and that’s the Louisiana Health and Rehab Center for short-term specialized assistance.
Even agencies that kept their partnerships with Capital Area United Way did not necessarily receive all the money they wanted. The combined requests from those agencies totaled $13 million, while Capital Area United Way only had around $5 million to give.
Catholic Charities for the Diocese of Baton Rouge, for example, applied for money for programs that fit into every category. Catholic Charities received money for some programs in education, income stability and basic needs programs, but not all of the money it asked for, nor did it receive funding for some of its programs across the categories.
The Boys and Girls Club requested $253,700 for one of its educational programs but received $145,000 instead. The organization’s president, Pat Van Burkleo, who serves on the board of Capital Area United Way, said he knew going in that education was a competitive category.
He said the Boys and Girls Club will consider ways to fundraise and diversify its funding streams. But he also said he is excited for some of the new agencies receiving money as well.
The money Capital Area United Way is giving to its 51 agencies is part of the $7.9 million it is investing in Baton Rouge this year. The rest of the money will go toward other programs that it runs and specific nonprofits donors have requested.