Remaining workshops: 9 a.m. Friday; 3:30 p.m. Wednesday
Location: Cleveland/Bradley Chamber of Commerce
Application deadline: 5 p.m. July 22
Submit applications: United Way applications at United Way; county applications at courthouse, Room 105.
Source: United Way, Bradley County
CLEVELAND, Tenn. — Money from the 2005 sale of the county’s public hospital has become what the former Bradley Memorial Hospital Board sought — a perpetual source of grants to promote health, wellness and quality of life.
Local nonprofit and government agencies began the 2012 grant application process Tuesday with the first of three workshops on writing requests.
The hospital was sold to Community Health Services and became SkyRidge Medical Center. Nearly $35 million was left over after the hospital’s accounts were settled.
Bradley County government was given $15 million to invest, with the interest to be used for capital projects, from transport vans to playground construction, that improve health and the quality of life. Members of the county’s Healthy Community Initiative review and approve grant requests.
United Way of Bradley County received $19.7 million to invest through a Community Investment Team.
Neither United Way nor the county can spend the principal.
“They [community leaders] wanted that to last indefinitely,” Matt Ryerson, United Way’s vice president for community investment strategies, explained to those attending Tuesday’s workshop.
United Way has awarded $400,000 in grants in each of the last three years. This year up to $450,000 is available.
Amy Moore, administrative assistant to the Bradley County Commission, said the Healthy Community Initiative have not yet determined how much will be available from the county.
United Way’s grants are for programs, such as drug awareness or health screenings, or for supplies.
About half the requests receive full or partial funding. Ryerson coached the grant writers on being thorough but concise with information and to be realistic about setting goals.
United Way is careful to note the difference between grants from the hospital fund and its traditional fundraising and funding. Organizations can apply for only one of the grant programs, and the beneficiaries must be Bradley County residents.
“The applications may be short, but don’t get lazy, disorganized or unclear,” cautioned County Commissioner J. Adam Lowe, an HCI member.
Randall Higgins covers news in Cleveland, Tenn., for the Times Free Press. He started work with the Chattanooga Times in 1977 and joined the staff of the Chattanooga Times Free Press when the Free Press and Times merged in 1999. Randall has covered Southeast Tennessee, Northwest Georgia and Alabama. He now covers Cleveland and Bradley County and the neighboring region. Randall is a Cleveland native. He has bachelor’s degree from Tennessee Technological University. His awards ...