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Community Partners2022-06-30T10:03:33-05:00

Community Partners

Together, we can accomplish more.

We partner with community organizations to tackle issues at the root cause through multiple methods:

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Program Grants
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Collective Impact
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Special Programs
Youth venture grant committee
YOUTH PROGRAMS

PROGRAM INVESTMENTS

United Way of the Plains invests in the community through three nonprofit grant opportunities: Opportunity on the Plains, Promise on the Plains and Impact on the Plains. Each supports our work to advance the common good in our focus areas of health, education, financial stability and basic needs.

Opportunity on the Plains

Opportunity on the Plains is the largest, annual investment program from United Way of the Plains to help meet the most pressing needs in our community. It provides grants to health and human service programs in our focus areas of health, education, financial stability and basic needs. Thanks to the caring power of our community, this program is investing a total of $6,582,311 in area programs, including 24 new programs, from July 2022 to June 2023 that will help individuals and families throughout south central Kansas achieve their human potential.

Download a list of this year’s recipients.

Promise on the Plains

Promise on the Plains works to reduce inequities in the Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) nonprofit sector by assisting in building organizational capacity to help foster a more just and inclusive community. Grants intentionally support and strengthen nonprofit organizations serving the BIPOC community, while advancing the work of United Way in the areas of health, education, financial stability and basic needs. United Way has invested $100,000 in 10 nonprofit organizations that benefit the BIPOC community.

Recipients were announced at the Mayor’s Press Briefing on Thursday, June 16, 2022. Read the press release here.

Impact on the Plains

Impact on the Plains, United Way’s social innovation competition, invites nonprofits to pitch their ideas for bold solutions to community issues in a “Shark-Tank” style event.  A diverse group of community judges narrows down applications to the top two in each of our focus areas: health, education, financial stability and basic needs. Finalists pitch their program to a panel of judges at a live event. This event promotes an entrepreneurial ecosystem in the nonprofit community and transforms how complex social issues are addressed.

Impact on the Plains was held on National Philanthropy Day, Nov. 15, 2021. Read the press release, highlighting the recipients.

COLLECTIVE IMPACT:
HOMEWARD BOUND PARTNERS

United Way is using collective impact to tackle homelessness at it’s root causes. Under this model, we bring together partners from multiple sectors, such as businesses, nonprofits, government organizations, community leaders and more. United Way serves as the backbone organization to support the work of the partnership by coordinating a shared measurement system, mutually reinforcing activities and ongoing communication. 

Impact ICT – Continuum of Care (CoC)

United Way is the lead agency for Impact ICT – CoC, a coalition of 170+ community stakeholders and advocates. Learn more:

Homeward Bound
Emergency Solutions Grant 

United Way of the Plains partners with the City of Wichita for the Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). ESG assist homeless individuals or persons who are at imminent risk of becoming homeless. Funding provides emergency shelter, homeless prevention services and rapid re-housing. The City of Wichita applies for the ESG grant and allocates funding. United Way assists the ESG grant subrecipients with their HUD mandated data entry and data reporting.

Members of the Impact ICT – CoC Program Collaborative

Impact ICT – CoC submits an annual application for HUD CoC program funding to renew the following programs:

Catholic Charities2020-06-29T12:26:04-05:00

Catholic Charities Rapid Rehousing: $126,753

  • This is a Rapid Re-Housing (RRH) project renewal that uses a Housing First approach targeting homeless families, veterans and victims of domestic violence. The project need is based on continuing demand for rapid re-housing requests received by Catholic Charities through the two emergency shelters (Harbor House and St. Anthony Family Shelter) and continuous requests received by the public and through community partners including Impact – ICT CoC, United Way of the Plains 211, and other homeless providers. Identification of permanent housing options (scattered) and supportive case management is conducted by Catholic Charities in alignment with the CoC’s coordinated entry process using the VI-SPDAT assessment. Catholic Charities uses the VI-SPDAT for the two shelters and our VA SSVF funded program. The RRH renewal project will target the same number of units (13) as in the currently funded year, with 80% or more of families maintaining permanent housing for six (6) months or longer.
COMCARE of Sedgwick County2020-06-29T12:25:56-05:00

Shelter Plus Care Consolidated: $1,014,731

COMCARE of Sedgwick County collaborates with Miracles, Inc. and University of Kansas School of Medicine – Wichita Medical Practice Association (UKSM-W MPA) to provide tenant-based rental assistance to literally and chronically homeless persons within the city of Wichita and Sedgwick County. The program is designed to promote residential stability for those with severe and persistent mental illness, substance abuse issues, and/or HIV/AIDS-related illness. The program operates with a commitment to eliminate as many barriers possible and to get as close as possible to a Housing First approach. The project also utilizes the VI-SPDAT assessment tool to determine risk and prioritization. The program dedicates 27 beds for chronically homeless persons. The program works with households to rapidly place/stabilize them into permanent housing without preconditions such as sobriety, treatment criminal background, or a minimum income threshold. The program purpose is to provide clients with skills to increase self-sufficiency, financial stability, and self-determination through permanent housing for the homeless persons with disabilities within the city of Wichita and Sedgwick County.

HumanKind Ministries2020-06-29T12:25:48-05:00

Villa Court: $119,656

HumanKind Ministries requested and received United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Continuum of Care (CoC) program funding in 2003 to pay a portion of the cost to acquire and rehabilitate existing buildings located at 902, 930, and 938 North Market in Wichita, Kansas. Sixteen (16) units of this apartment multiplex are dedicated as permanent housing for chronically homeless people; which includes individuals diagnosed as having severe and persistent mental illness, or are experiencing alcohol and/or substance addiction. HUD CoC funding also paid a portion of operating costs and supportive services for the chronically homeless people living in this housing project. Supportive services are necessary to assist with the transition of chronically homeless people from the streets and shelters to permanent housing and self-sufficiency. HumanKind Ministries is requesting funding in the amount of $119,656 to enable continued apartment multiplex operation and supportive services. Supportive services include transportation, life skills training and case management.

Villa North: $63,297

HumanKind Ministries requested and received United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Continuum of Care (CoC) program funding in 2002 to pay a portion of the cost to acquire an existing building located at 917 North Market in Wichita, Kansas. The building was rehabilitated for use as an apartment complex. Nineteen (19) units of this apartment complex are dedicated as permanent housing for chronically homeless people diagnosed as having severe and persistent mental illness. HUD CoC funding has also been requested and approved, every year that the apartment complex has been in operation, to pay a portion of operating costs and supportive services for the chronically homeless people living in this housing project. Supportive services are necessary to assist with the transition of chronically homeless people from the streets and shelters to permanent housing and self-sufficiency. HumanKind Ministries is requesting funding in the amount of $63,297 to enable continued apartment complex operation and supportive services. Supportive services include transportation, life skills training, and case management.

Villa Central: $43,050

HumanKind Ministries requested and received United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Continuum of Care (CoC) program funding in 1999 to pay a portion of the cost to acquire property at 848 North Market in Wichita, Kansas. An apartment complex was constructed on the property. Eight (8) units of this apartment complex are dedicated as permanent housing for chronically homeless people diagnosed as having severe and persistent mental illness. HUD CoC funding has also been requested and approved, every year that the apartment complex has been in operation, to pay a portion of supportive services for the chronically homeless people living in this housing project. Supportive services are necessary to assist with the transition of chronically homeless people from the streets and shelters to permanent housing and self-sufficiency. HumanKind Ministries is requesting funding in the amount of $43,050 to enable supportive services. Supportive services include life skills training and case management.

Mental Health Association2020-06-29T12:25:40-05:00

Dual Diagnosis Permanent Supportive Housing: $259,484

The Dual Diagnosis Permanent Supportive Housing (DD PSH) project provides housing & specialized, supportive services for 19 persons experiencing chronic homelessness. Referrals will continue to come primarily through either the Coordinated Entry process or the CH Master List on which all emergency shelters and street outreach providers participate. There are no preconditions of minimum income, sobriety, nor program requirements of medication compliance/service participation. A Vulnerability Index-Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool assessment will be conducted at the time of referral to ensure the project is the most appropriate housing option & to identify needed services in order to expedite access. United Way of the Plains has transferred this project to Mental Health Association (MHA) which will continue leases on scattered-site apartments in order to quickly provide housing to participants using sub-leases/occupancy agreements in order to remove barriers that would ordinarily stop or slow-down the process of obtaining housing. MHA will provide specialized housing support in situations that might otherwise cause eviction & serve as a liaison with the property owner/manager, when needed and 2) will apply their expertise as licensed professionals in the treatment of co-occurring mental illness & substance use disorders to help participants manage the symptoms of their disorders. Project funded staff will engage & support participant’s recovery & wellness through case management services. Additional services will be available, as needed and desired. MHA has years of experience: 1) connecting homeless persons to needed services & resource and 2) implementing HUD CoC Program funded projects. Participants with severe needs & vulnerabilities will have access to exceptional housing support & experienced service providers who will help them reach their personalized goals for housing stability & increased income. All references to “Subrecipient” in this application refer to MHA-ResCare as the current grantee following successful transfer of this project.

Permanent Supportive Housing Consolidated Grant: $162,058

The Mental Health Association, Residential Care Inc. (MHA) will provide PSH using a Housing First approach for 19 chronically homeless individuals who have a co-occurring mental illness and substance use disorder. The project’s goal is to effectively address the complex needs of the chronically homeless by offering strengths based and integrated dual diagnosis strategies/services to improve housing stability and access to mainstream resources. Research has shown that people who are dually diagnosed have the most difficulty maintaining housing and accessing services. MHA will lease scattered-site, one-bedroom apartments from a community landlord. Residents will sublet units from MHA. Referrals for the project will come from Coordinated Entry, referrals through PATH outreach workers and other MHA programs. Any vacancies will be dedicated to chronically homeless individuals. Residents will be supported to remain in PSH until they elect to move on to other safe affordable permanent housing. Apartments will be within walking distance of public transportation and other amenities. PSH participants will be encouraged to participate in mental health services including individual/group therapy, case management, med management, addiction treatment services as well as independent living skills training. Residents will be referred to any other community resources which may be helpful in their recovery, such as representative payee services, legal aid & recreational opportunities. Residents will develop an individualized treatment plan to recover from mental illness/substance use. Treatment plans may include goals to stabilize mental health symptoms, harm reduction, supported employment, supported education, in order to increase self-sufficiency. Residents will be involved in the project’s decision making/operations through ongoing project evaluation and consumer feedback meetings comprised of homeless/previously homeless persons.

Rapid Rehousing: $127,464
The MHA’s Residential Care, Inc. is requesting renewed funding for the MHARR Project through the Continuum of Care. This project will utilize a housing first approach to provide rapid re-housing to 18 homeless persons in Sedgwick County and target individuals who meet the definition for chronically homelessness, and/or DedicatedPLUS eligible, and/or have a documented disabling condition. Prioritization will be given to chronic homeless individuals, veterans who experience chronic homelessness and have a disabling condition, individuals fleeing a domestic violence situation, and families experiencing chronic homelessness where one individual has a documented disabling condition. As a RRH DedicatedPLUS project, persons will be placed in scattered site locations utilizing mid-term rental assistance. The scattered-site apartments will include 16 units with 18 beds. Households will include one household with at least one child and 15 adult households without children. Housing units will be comprised of 5 studio, 10 one bedroom, and 1 two bedroom apartments. The projected outcomes are: · 83% of individuals will exit to permanent housing during the operating year · 83 % of individuals will be placed in permanent housing within 30 days

The Salvation Army2020-06-29T12:25:32-05:00

Transitional Housing & Rapid Rehousing Program: $133,190

The Salvation Army Wichita TH-RRH Program (TH-RRHP) will provide facility based Transitional Housing, Rapid Rehousing scattered site rental assistance, and supportive services for 61 persons (families and single women) over the course of the program year. Five units consisting of 10 beds will be utilized for the TH program located at 350 N. Market, Wichita, KS. RRH will maintain 8 scattered site units which will include: 5-one bedroom units and 3-two bedroom units. TH-RRH will accept people based on the Housing First model. Supportive Services monies will assist with moving costs, bus passes, and education/employment assistance in order to reduce barriers to obtaining/maintaining permanent housing. All units will need medium term rental assistance (6-12 months). The Salvation Army will coordinate with the CoC to utilize Coordinated Entry, the By Name List and results from the VI-SPDAT to help determine the most appropriate housing placement for applicants. This process will ensure that applicants with the most critical needs are prioritized and quickly placed in housing of their choice, when possible. The case manager will communicate with the CoC and notify them when there are vacancies in order to fill them quickly. The case manager will help clients secure housing in the area of town of their choice. One FTE case manager will be available to assist participants in obtaining/maintaining their housing and increasing their income through accessing mainstream resources and/or obtaining employment.

United Methodist Open Door2020-06-29T12:25:24-05:00

Family Rapid Rehousing: $151,259

A Rapid Rehousing Tenant Based Rental Assistance program for families with children. Capacity is 10 units with a combination of 7 two bedroom and 3 three bedroom units. Partnerships are in place to assist survivors of domestic violence. Case management will be tailored to address each family’s unique barriers to achieving housing with the goal to quickly rehouse the family and plan for the fastest transition possible to maintaining housing without HUD assistance.

United Way of the Plains2020-06-29T12:25:16-05:00

Homeless Information Management System – Coordinated Entry: $220,735

United Way of the Plains (UWP) contracts with Eccovia Solutions, LLC (formerly ClientTrack) to self-host the web-based, HUD compliant HMIS software. UWP operates the system under the direction of the WSC-CoC. UWP serves as the HMIS Lead agency & supports client/program data management by assisting, as needed, with data entry, monitoring data quality & providing ongoing training/support for agencies & end users so they are able to generate program evaluation & HUD required reports. All HUD & other federal agency required reports are able to be generated with the system, such as CAPER & VA-SSVF. The proposed project will continue enhancements made in HMIS in response to HUD’s Notice “Establishing Additional Requirements for a CoC Centralized or Coordinated Assessment System CPD-17-01,” which set new requirements for Coordinated Entry (CE). The CoC’s goal is to have a CE process that allows system users to make consistent decisions from available information to efficiently & effectively connect people to interventions to rapidly end their homelessness. The proposed project would maintain the tools needed for providers & 2-1-1 Call Specialists to speed a person’s entry into shelter &/or into PH. The primary purpose is for persons at-risk of or experiencing homelessness to quickly locate housing or services; be referred only to projects they are eligible for; to access projects once referred; & appeal rejections by projects through a transparent procedure. UWP operates 2-1-1, a statewide information & referral system. The project will maintain the effective HMIS & allow continued refinements of the system for CE. The CE workflow HMIS will be even more important as HUD’s 2020 Data Standards go into effect. This funding will also continue: 1) HMIS Coordinator position to oversee the functioning of hardware/software & 2) 1.5 FTE HMIS-CE staff positions that enhanced CE provider support. Compliance will be ensured through HMIS training on: 1) CE &/or housing & referral modules, 2) monitoring of provider’s timely entry of enrollments & exits, 3) CE caller accessibility/functioning, 4) subsequent enrollment into referred project(s)/services, 5) facilitation of monthly CE Usage & Data Quality meetings, & 6) back-up CAS data entry to ensure providers have access to HMIS basic client intake file in less than 24 hours.

Coordinated Entry Domestic Violence Database: $135,588

The project will enhance the current CE process by establishing an HMIS comparable database through which DV providers can enter data and make referrals. Currently, there is not a single system used by area DV providers & no protocol established for a comparable database that can generate & export aggregate DV reporting that is compliant with HUD reports. The system will generate de-duplicated, aggregate reports to provide a more thorough perspective of the gaps in housing and service needs for persons who are fleeing DV situations in the CoC. Making the DV database available at no charge to DV providers will allow DV providers to be compliant with ESG reporting requirements and serve as an incentive for applying to future CoC Program DV Bonus project(s). The project will provide licensing for DV providers to use the comparable database & contract with a HUD HMIS compliant vendor. Though the DV database will be a standalone system, there is still a need to continue the established DV-CE Manager position to serve as a DV Liaison for on-going technical support after the initial set-up phase and to facilitate inclusion of DV providers in the CoC CE process. A DV database advisory group will be formed for the initial set-up of the comparable database, as well as to refine CoC policies & procedures related to DV providers’ involvement in the CE.

Continuum of Care Planning: $79,183

The proposed project will provide a 1.0 FTE position with two primary responsibilities that will enhance the CoC coordination activities & project monitoring. 1) An estimated half of the 1.0 FTE will be focused on coordination & streamlining the current CoC Action Plan to increase the effectiveness of coordination. A primary focus for the FY2020-2021 implementation will conduct a deeper review of barriers to housing & services, as well as coordination with the City and State Consolidated Plans. The coordination efforts will include dissemination of information about the CoC, the CE system & the strategies used to help project participants maintain housing, income support, etc. Grant opportunities will be explored to help build housing capacity for both rental assistance & leasing; 2) the remaining 0.5 FTE time will focus on project monitoring activities to better understand how the current system is operating collectively & to identify areas for improvement in CoC & ESG funded projects. The CoC Planning position will conduct more in-depth project evaluation activities and focus on marketing the previously conducted cost reduction research & outcome data. This will enhance the current project evaluation that considers targeted performance outcomes, history of financial drawdowns/fund utilization, HUD monitoring outcomes/findings, & HMIS compliance & data quality monitoring. The proposed project will increase community stakeholder & formerly homeless involvement in the Quarterly Performance Workgroup. Developing & implementing enhanced project evaluation policies & procedures will directly support the functioning of the CoC, implementation of the CoC Action Plan & the CE/Master List efforts.

Supportive Services Only – Coordinated Entry: $40,465

This original renewal project will continue funding for 1.0 FTE CE Navigator position to work with housing & homeless service providers to facilitate access to housing. The CE Navigator will enhance the coordination & increase accountability needed for the CE Planning & Development work group & hands-on activities. Key components of the SSO-CE project/position include: 1) monitor CE referrals & intervene in situations where the access to housing and/or essential services are delayed, 2) assist persons experiencing homelessness with housing applications, complete required assessments, such as VI-SPDAT that help document project eligibility, & 3) support cross-organization providers who lack sufficient resources to facilitate access to the CE process, such as outreach to find/engage persons who are unsheltered & for whom housing voucher or unit is available in order to expedite enrollment in a CoC housing project. The position will also monitor beds/unit availability & be skilled in Diversion & Rapid Resolution as strategies to help facilitate access to housing options.

 

SPECIAL PROGRAMS

In addition to funding local programs through the grant review process, we also partner with other organizations to support special programs.

School Attendance Initiative powered by United Way
BE THERE!

Partners with USD 259 – Wichita Public Schools and The Pando Initiative to ensure students are in school, all day, every day.

Free books for preschool children.
IMAGINATION LIBRARY

Partners with Kansas Health Foundation and other community organizations to mail a free book monthly to preschool children to foster a love of reading.

Stack of children's blocks.
BLOCK GRANT

United Way coordinates this grant that funds programs focused on early childhood development.

Helping third graders read at grade level
READ TO SUCCEED

Partners with USD 259 – Wichita Public Schools to provide reading coaches for third-grade students.

Helping individuals file their taxes online or in person.
FREE TAX PREP

Partners with the Building Economic Stability Together (BE$T) Coalition of South Central Kansas, City of Wichita and IRS. Primarily supported by a federal grant.

Dental benefits coverage for individuals with low income.
DENTAL COVERAGE

Partners with Delta Dental of Kansas to provide dental coverage for those with low-income.

Free flu shots for those unable to pay.
OPERATION IMMUNIZATION

Partners with KU School of Pharmacy and local clinics to distribute free flu shots.

City Bus
VETERANS RIDE FREE

Partners with the City of Wichita and Robert J. Dole VA Medical Center to offer veterans free rides on city busses.

Keeper of the Plains
Community Projects

We also participate in collaborations with Greater Wichita Partnership, Project Wichita and other organizations.

Helping homeless with pets by covering the boarding fees for their animals.
Helping Homeless with Pets

We’re removing housing barriers for homeless individuals with pets by covering the costs of boarding and care through a private endowment.

YOUTH PROGRAMS

The Dwane L. Wallace Youth Venture Grant Committee is a student-led committee that receives leadership training, reviews program grant applications and budgets, and allocates funding. Below is a list of community partners they are funding this year.

Dwane Wallace Youth Venture Grant2022-01-04T11:40:49-06:00

The Dwane L. Wallace Youth Venture Grant Committee is a student-led committee that receives leadership training, reviews youth programs and their budgets, and allocates funding. Funding is provided by the Dwane L. Wallace endowment.

2021 Grant Recipients

First LEGO League (Cottonwood Elementary School, Andover) – $6,113
After school students, age Pre-K to fifth grade, will be introduced to STEM through play using the Discover Set and LEGO Education Team Park Program.

Refugee & Immigrant Students Empowerment (International Rescue Committee) – $300
Grant funds will help build engagement for current students and recruit new participants through T-shirts and other supplies.

Family Support Service Supplies (Rainbows United) – $1,100
Funding will help engage students at Camp Woodchuck this summer through art and crafts.

STEM Academy for Girls – Climate Action Network (Northwest High School) – $1,150
Through a partnership with Pro Kansas Recycling Center, students will learn about recycling and reducing the use of plastic bags. Funds will purchase reusable grocery bags and supplies to aid student led neighborhood cleanup projects.

 

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