Gibson County Community Foundation Implementation Grant Update

Overview

Through an active stakeholder engagement process including data and document review, community leader forums, and issue-specific stakeholder meetings, the Gibson County Community Foundation selected the cycle of poverty as its top priority to address with GIFT VII Implementation Grant funds. In order to determine the specific project to implement, the Community Foundation convened a core group of community stakeholders, including Community Foundation Advisory Board members, who work or have an interest in this field to determine the best use of the grant funds. The group felt there was a lack of understanding in the community about the issue of poverty and that the negative perception of the causes of poverty presented a major challenge when attempting to support those in need of services. The group determined that nonprofits cannot effectively expand programs or work collaboratively until there is broader knowledge and awareness around the issue. The Community Foundation will be utilizing the GIFT VII Implementation Grant funds to support programs that will help educate the public about the cycle of poverty as follows:

Speaker for School Corporations: In coordination with aha Process! Inc., Dr. Ruby Payne will provide a professional development presentation on Emotional Poverty for Gibson County school districts. Dr. Payne is a leading expert in the culture of poverty and its relation to education. Her work provides a framework aimed to equip educators and leaders to tackle poverty in our schools and communities. Dr. Payne will also present a Bridges Out of Poverty keynote with meet & greet to kick off the GIFT VII Implementation Grant initiative that includes multiple aha Process! Inc., programs.

aha Process! Inc. Workshops: In coordination with aha Process! Inc., the Community Foundation will provide the following training opportunities: Bridges Out of Poverty workshop, Getting Ahead in a Just-Getting’ by World, and the Addressing the Challenges of Poverty National Conference. These opportunities will help participants understand the role they can play in alleviating poverty and how to be effective in those practices.

One Book One Community: In collaboration with the Oakland City Columbia Township Public Library, a One Book One Community project will be initiated by allowing community members to check out and read the books, Toxic Charity and Charity Detox, and afterwards participate in a group discussion of the books to gain insights into these topics.

Lupton Center Workshops: These workshops will help community organizations understand the hidden forces that prevent lasting change in their communities.

Poverty Simulators: The Community Foundation will also host three Poverty Simulators in collaboration with the Community Action Program of Evansville & Vanderburgh County.

Pathway of Hope Program: This program will be implemented by the Salvation Army-Princeton Corps to educate and provide support to clients to move them from crises and vulnerability to stability and eventually self-sufficiency, tracking family progress along the way.

Collaborating Organizations

Implementation Grant Recipients:
Oakland City Columbia Township Public Library
Salvation Army-Princeton Corps

Key Partners:
Columbia Township Trustee
Community Action Program of Evansville & Vanderburgh County
East Gibson School District
North Gibson School Corporation
Oakland City Columbia Township Public Library
Patoka Township Trustee
Salvation Army-Princeton Corps
South Gibson School Corporation
Tulip Tree Family Healthcare

Activity Update

Although the COVID-19 pandemic had stalled our initiatives due to gathering and travel restrictions, the Community Foundation will begin implementation during summer 2021 with a kick-off presentation by Dr. Ruby Payne on July 27, 2021, and her Emotional Poverty presentations to school districts on July 28, 2021. Other initiatives and programs will be implemented in August 2021 and ensuing months.