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United Way of the Florida Keys Announces 2016-17 Grant Recipients

United Way of the Florida Keys has announced that it will distribute a total of $155,000 in grants to 15 nonprofit agencies in 2016-17.

The 15 programs were among 18 that applied for funding in one of three United Way focus areas: access to nutritious food for people in critical need; early childhood or after-school care with an educational or positive behavioral component; or safety net services, including information and referral or short-term emergency response.

Thank you to all the agencies that applied for United Way funding! We look forward to seeing the successes of your good work.

Grant recipients providing access to nutritious food include:

- Star of the Sea Outreach Mission-- $25,000 for a Keys-wide food distribution program 
- Keys Area Interdenominational Resources (KAIR)-- $15,000 for their food pantry in Marathon
- Florida Keys Outreach Coalition-- $8,000 for the Loaves and Fishes food pantry and residential meal program in Key West 
- Burton Memorial Church-- $15,000 for the Daily Bread Food Pantry in Tavernier
- Metropolitan Community Church-- $3,500 for food for home-bound seniors in Key West 
- Florida Keys Children's Shelter-- $14,000 for food at the children's shelters in Tavernier and Key West
- Wesley House-- $10,000 for the Inez Martin Nutritional Backpack Program in Key West 
- Independence Cay-- $8,000 for the soup kitchen in Marathon
- Florida Keys Healthy Start Coalition-- $6,000 for supplemental nutrition for children and infants throughout the Keys 
- Monroe Association for ReMarcable Citizens-- $5,000 for the Food and Individual Training program throughout the Keys

Grant recipients providing early childhood or after-school care include:

- Marathon Recreation Center-- $18,000 for after school care
- Southernmost Boys and Girls Club--$10,000 for summer programming in Key West
- Bahama Village Music Program-- $5,000 for after school music education in Key West
- Burton Memorial Church-- $10,000 for childcare scholarships in Tavernier

Grant recipients providing safety net services:

- Florida Keys Outreach Coalition--$2,500 for "Quick Assist" emergency aid and referral in the Upper Keys


The 2016-17 grant recipients were selected based on a scores calculated from a rubric submitted by United Way board members and community volunteers who reviewed applications and visited agencies in each region of the Keys.

*Community volunteers Amy Heavilin, Kimberley LeBroutillier, and Cynthia Setzer

*Amy Heavilin, Patrick Garvey, Ann Sandlin, and Susan Kent visit nonprofits in Key West.

*Upper Keys community volunteers, UWFK staff and directors at Burton Memorial Church


Board chair Maria Jones stated, “We are very grateful to those who contributed to the United Way of the Florida Keys over the last year as well as those who volunteered to participate in these funding recommendations. Giving of one’s money and time is not an obligation, it is a choice, and we are humbled by all the individuals that supported our efforts to improve our Florida Keys community.”

The needs are still great! For more about how you can help, click here or email Ann Sandlin at