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Learning Grove & Linda Vila Passione

NKY Relief Fund has Awarded Almost $700,000 in Support for Local Nonprofits

Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky will distribute nearly $60,000 across four nonprofits this week, bringing relief support totals to $664,000 for Northern Kentucky. 

The four latest nonprofits to receive funding are: Legal Aid of the Bluegrass, $36,812.50; Oak Ridge Baptist Church, $14,181; Diocese of Covington, $4,209.30; Learning Grove, on behalf of local educator Linda Vila Passione: $3,060.

“Our nonprofits and schools present very unique needs, as consequences of the coronavirus pandemic continue to ripple across Northern Kentucky,” said Nancy Grayson, Horizon Community Funds President. “We deploy Coronavirus Relief Fund dollars with a careful eye on these needs, and a careful eye on how we can best fill in ongoing unforeseen gaps for our nonprofits.”

Legal Aid of the Bluegrass, a nonprofit that provides high-quality legal assistance to individuals and families in need, including direct representation, education, advice, advocacy, and community resource coordination, will receive $36,812.50. Legal Aid will use these funds to hire two staff attorneys and one intake counselor on a contract basis to service Northern Kentucky residents facing eviction through the end of the year.  

“The Coronavirus Relief Fund grant comes at a critical time in our community and in our organization,” said Joshua Crabtree, Legal Aid of the Bluegrass Executive Director. “Legal Aid of the Bluegrass is being inundated with people needing legal assistance or guidance so that they can remain ‘Healthy at Home,’ and this grant allows us to meet this intensifying need with customary responsiveness. These relief funds increase our ‘live’ intake hours 25 percent through the end of the year so that many more people can receive the vital assistance they need.” 

Oak Ridge Baptist Lighthouse Ministries, serving an average of 100 families each month in Latonia Lakes and surrounding areas in South Covington with food products, will receive $14,181 to purchase a walk-in refrigerator and freezer to increase their storage capacity and equip them to serve more meals. 

“We have heard it said, ‘It takes a village to raise a child.’ Well, it takes a community united and working together in a spirit of love to successfully overcome hard times such as these,” said Minister Byron Lile of Oak Ridge. “Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky is a great example of bringing our community together by working with, and providing help for our support organizations. All of us at Oak Ridge Baptist Lighthouse Ministries are very grateful for the blessings we have received from the Lord by way of Horizon Community Funds, and we will do our best to use these blessings to bring many more blessings to families in need. Thank you to everyone who helped make this possible!” 

The Diocese of Covington will receive $4,029.30 to purchase two professional-grade electrostatic sprayers to clean school buildings. The sprayers will be shared with 10 schools across the diocese, including St. Cecilia School in Independence.  

“We are very appreciative of our school community for taking the time to research grants that will assist us in keeping our students and staff safe,” said Principal Kenneth Collopy of St. Cecilia School. “We are grateful to our School Board and Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky for this grant that will provide disinfecting equipment to our school and our neighboring Catholic schools.” 

Learning Grove will receive $3,060 to contract with local educator Linda Vila Passione, enabling Vila Passione to provide tutoring that will assist 25 Hispanic/Latino families during non-traditional and distance learning in the Kenton County School District. 

“Throughout this pandemic, we have seen many examples of how families are struggling to be caregivers, breadwinners, and educators in an ever-changing world. We know this weight to provide educational support to children is even heavier for our families where English is not regularly spoken in the home,” said Shannon Starkey-Taylor, Learning Grove CEO . “Learning Grove is proud to partner with Linda Vila Passione to provide much-needed support to Spanish speaking families in our region. We are so grateful that Horizon Community Funds of Northern Kentucky designated funds to support our families in an impactful way.”  

“I am grateful to Horizon Community Funds and Learning Grove for recognizing the need in the Hispanic community,” Passione said. “These funds will help me reconnect students to their lessons & guide parents in learning how to support their children in their education. A small pebble that will, hopefully, cause increasing ripples in the pond.”  

Individuals and businesses are encouraged to donate to the Horizon NKY Coronavirus Relief Fund by: 

  • Texting “NKYRELIEF” to 44-321 
  • Visiting www.horizonfunds.org 
  • Mailing a check made payable to Horizon Community Funds (memo: NKY Coronavirus Relief Fund): 50 E. RiverCenter Blvd., Suite 430, Covington, KY 41011 

 -Staff report

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