Some local programs aimed at helping children got a funding boost this week from the Children’s Trust Fund of Alabama.
Milton Jackson, the field representative for the Children’s Trust Fund in Montgomery, this week presented checks to five agencies totaling $55,000.
The annual appropriations have fluctuated through the years for the individual agencies, largely because of the state’s economic woes. The Children’s Trust Fund’s primary mission is to provide funding for child abuse prevention-related programs through the various agencies. Funding is earmarked for particular programs within each of the agencies.
Recipients this year included the Community Action Agency of Northwest Alabama, $9,000; the Boys and Girls Attention Homes of Colbert and Lauderdale counties, $18,000; Lauderdale County Children’s Policy Council, $5,000; Aim High Mentoring Program at Sheffield High School, $14,000; and United Cerebral Palsy Center in Tuscumbia, $9,000.
Teresa Robertson, director of the Boys and Girls Attention Homes, said she counts on the appropriation every year.
“Just three years ago we were at $75,000 in funding from the Children’s Trust Fund, but cuts have come along and it’s been hard on all agencies,” Robertson said.
“We’re actually up $3,000 this year and I’m grateful for every penny of it.”
Like other help agencies, Robertson said she depends heavily on grants and other funding sources to produce a workable budget each year.
Sherri Baker, grant writer for Sheffield City Schools, said the $14,000 her school system receives for the Aim High Mentoring Program is crucial.
“If we lost this money I don’t know how we’d fund the program, or if we even could,” Baker said.
The Aim High program serves about 60 students per year through high school and adult mentors.
Lisa Singleton-Rickman can be reached at 256-740-5735 or lisa.singleton-rickman@TimesDaily.com.