ANC6B Completes Ward 6 COVID Humanitarian Grant Awards Totaling $45,000
by Larry Janezich
August 12, 2020
Tuesday night, ANC6B awarded the last four of the one-time humanitarian grants to Ward Six organizations providing COVID related relief to Ward Six residents. After two previous grants of $15,000 to Serve Your City for PEP, cleaning supplies, bath tissue, computer equipment and support, Wi Fi access, etc., and $5,000 to Shirley’s Place for winter clothing for the homeless, $25,000 remained of the original $45,000 allocated for grants. Those funds came from the ANC’s annual operating budget, with encouragement from the City Council.
The only group receiving full funding for its request was Capitol Hill United Methodist Church. They asked for $9,000 to fund their Food and Friendship program for Capitol Hill’s homeless for three months. The congregation initially contributed $15,000 to initiate the program after the Mayor’s Order closed indoor food service. Now the service is grab and go and meals and meals delivered to the homeless who are unable or unwilling to go to homeless shelters. The church also provides wellness checks, PPE, essential clothing and connection with case workers working to provide permanent housing. Volunteers drop off meals to 25 people each day, Monday through Friday. The church provides 40 grab and go meals on Sunday. Three fourths of the funds are spent for food and food preparation in local stores and businesses, including Peregrine, Firehook, Mr. Henry’s and Eastern Market.
Capitol Community Partners received $8,000 of the requested $15,000 to provide equipment and Wi-Fi services to students and teachers of Ward Six. In support of the application, the organization offered to match the grant with up to $10,000 of their own funding. Capitol Community Partners works through school principals to identify students and teachers who need technology for virtual class rooms.
Light House DC asked for $15,000 for its COVID Relief Program to help Ward Six homeless and low income individuals who have secured housing, providing PPE, sanitizers, food and grocery gift cards. The ANC awarded the group $4,000. The group provides humanitarian aid in all 8 wards, and uses DC DHS and intermediaries such as Halfway to Housing to identify clients. The latter group testified they have 96 clients in Ward Six who would benefit from the grant.
Eastern Market Main Street requested $5,000 to help small businesses and Eastern Market street vendors, and the committee wrestled with whether the proposal, which included marketing and technical assistance – in addition to distribution of PPE – technically met the definition of humanitarian aid. In the end, a majority of the commission found reason to support the request to and awarded a grant of the remaining $4000.