September 13, 2010; Source: Stuart News | We suspect that this story about House of Hope in Martin County, Fla., will be replayed with different names and different players all around the nation in the next few weeks and months.
House of Hope got a one-year $147,000 federal stimulus grant to help poor households with food, rent, electricity bills, and other services. The stimulus grant also allowed House of Hope to hire two new caseworkers to help serve 75 clients, typically the “working poor.”
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But all this is about to end as the grant expires on September 30.
The end of stimulus funding is going to take its toll among small nonprofit service providers that, like House of Hope, don’t have huge fundraising infrastructures or probably financial reserves. Some observers talk about the prospects of a “double-dip recession.” With the impact of the stimulus time limits on small nonprofits, the second dip may leave some without services that were critical supports for people just to stay afloat during the first dip.—Rick Cohen