(ATLANTIC) Family Crisis Support Network received notification that all grant applications submitted to the Crime Victim Assistance Division of the Iowa Attorney General’s Office were denied.
FCSN receives roughly $240,000 in several funding streams from CVAD. The funds received by FCSN were used to pay for wages, operational expenses and victim assistance in six counties in southwest Iowa. Those counties are Adair, Audubon, Cass, Montgomery, Page and Shelby counties.
FCSN Executive Director Wendy Richter said she’s not sure what this will mean since there is still some confusion with the message that the State is trying to send about the re-organization of victim services.
“What they’ve done is split the State into six regions, southwest Iowa is a region, so we were competing with three other programs in the area for the grants. Not that it’s never been a competitive grant cycle, but what they wanted was to look at different ways or more cost effective ways that they could provide victim services,” said Richter. “I guess their decision is that it’s more cost effective to give the money to the urban areas and let them serve the rural areas.”
Richter said their Board of Directors will continue to meet and go over their options. She said since they are their own private, non-profit the State doesn’t have control of what they do unless they utilize those funds.
“At this point going forward, July 1 we won’t be utilizing their funds anymore, we will be doing it on our own,” said Richter. “Now, does that mean that we can continue serving Victim Services? We aren’t certain of that because that will be determined by the Council Bluffs program who was given the funds for this area. So, they would actually have to give us permission to be doing the services out here in Cass County.”
Richter said they have a “rainy day” fund, so they don’t have to make any decisions in the near future; they could have up to six months to make a decision as to how they will go forward.
FCSN is the agency that has served victims of crime in southwest Iowa since 1990. The agency has served thousands of victims through the shelter service, court advocacy and medical advocacy; as well as provided training to those in need and educational presentation to hundreds of groups.