KINGMAN — Mohave County will receive a little more than $260,000 in federal funds to expand emergency relief programs in the county as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The county announced Tuesday that Congress had appropriated $125,000 under Phase 37 and Phase CARES of the Emergency Food and Shelter Program. Of the $125,000, Mohave County has been notified of an award of $107,371 to supplement emergency food and shelter programs in the county. In addition, the county is receiving $153,080 from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act. About $200 million was earmarked nationally by Congress in the CARES Act for EFSP appropriations.

The awards were based on Mohave County’s total number of unemployed and poverty-level residents compared to the total number of unemployed and poverty-level persons in all qualifying jurisdictions.

The selection was made by a national board chaired by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and consists of representatives from The Salvation Army; American Red Cross; United Jewish Communities; Catholic Charities, USA; National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A.; and United Way of America. This board was charged to distribute funds appropriated by Congress to help expand the capacity of food and shelter programs in high-need areas around the country.

To facilitate the funding, a local board composed of representatives invited from The Salvation Army, American Red Cross, Catholic Charities, United Way of America, Local Jewish Communities, local government, Indian tribes and a homeless-persons advocate will determine how the money awarded to Mohave County is to be distributed among the emergency food and shelter programs run by local service organizations. The local board is responsible for recommending agencies to receive these funds and any additional funds available under this phase of the program when funding becomes available.

Funded agencies, known as “local recipient organizations,” use EFSP supplemental funds for mass shelter, mass feeding, food distribution through pantries and food banks, one-month utility payments to prevent service disconnects, one month rent/mortgage assistance to prevent evictions or assistance for people leaving shelters to establish stable living conditions.

The Mohave County board previously has distributed Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds to Lake Havasu Community Food Bank; Westcare/Safehouse of Bullhead City; Lake Havasu Interagency Council; Kingman Area Food Bank; Kingman Aid to Abused People; The Salvation Army of Lake Havasu City; The Salvation Army of Bullhead City; The Salvation Army of Kingman; Kingman WACOG; Bullhead City WACOG; Lake Havasu City WACOG; Fort Mojave Indian Tribe; Cornerstone Mission; St. Vincent de Paul; Bullhead City Food Bank; First Assembly of God; Our Lady of the Lake of Lake Havasu City; and Advice and Aid Pregnancy Center. 

Organizations may apply for the EFSP funds with the understanding that funding is not guaranteed. Under the terms of the grant from the national board, local governmental and private organizations applying for funds must be nonprofit, have an accounting system, practice nondiscrimination, have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs and have a voluntary board if they are a private voluntary organization. Qualifying organizations in the county are urged to apply.

Jazmyne Tarkowski, Mohave County emergency management technician, said, “The Emergency Food and Shelter Grant is one of my most favored opportunities in which to be a part. This year, we will be able to help provide a total of $260,451 to organizations within Mohave County, whether nonprofit or governmental, that help assist our community. These funds are used to provide the following: food, in the form of served meals or groceries; lodging in a mass shelter or hotel; one month’s rent or mortgage payment; one month’s utility bill; and equipment necessary to feed or shelter people, with up to a $300 limit per item.

“I encourage any organization that may believe that it could qualify, to immediately apply or to reach out to me directly with any questions. This is a great opportunity for those organizations that are offering emergency food and shelter in the Mohave County area. I want to thank our community partners that are assisting in this pandemic and their efforts that have been expanded to help reach those in need.”

Organizations wishing to apply for funding under this program must apply no later than Thursday. The application can be emailed to the organization to be completed and emailed back. For an application, email byron.steward@mohavecounty.us or jazmyne.tarkowski@mohavecounty.us.

The local board will hold a teleconference meeting open to the public to allocate EFSP funds at 2 p.m. Wednesday, May 27. The meeting will be hosted by Mohave County Department of Risk and Emergency Management. 

All applicant agencies are urged to participate. New applicant LROs must attend the allocations meeting or risk loss of funding. To request an application or to obtain further information on the program or to get a call-in number for the teleconference, contact Byron Steward or Jazmyne Tarkowski, Mohave County Department of Risk Emergency Management, at 928-753-0739, ext. 460 or by fax at 928-718-4974.

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