As provided in the adopted plan under the American Rescue Plan Act, the City of Valparaiso is presenting funds to support local nonprofit organizations that serve the Valparaiso community. “When planning the distribution of the funds, we looked to organizations that served many members of our community hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic – children, families, first responders, people with disabilities and others facing hardship,” said Mayor Matt Murphy.
Organizations receiving ARPA funding through the City of Valparaiso include Boys & Girls Club of Greater Northwest Indiana, The Caring Place, Dressed for School, Hilltop Neighborhood House, MAAC Foundation, Opportunity Enterprises, Respite House, and both the Valparaiso Police and Valparaiso Fire departments.
Earlier this year, organizations were invited to share their thoughts for use of the ARPA funds at a City Council meeting, highlighting many positive initiatives. The Boys & Girls Club shared that they would use the grant for their newly opened $9 million facility on Evans Avenue, serving more than 1,000 youths in Valparaiso. Dressed for School planned to expand their ability to provide school clothes for hundreds of Valparaiso school children, perhaps enabling them to provide a second pair of shoes for each child. The MAAC Foundation, a training campus for first responders, intends to use the funding to expand an indoor training facility to support police and fire departments throughout the region. Each organization expressed ways they continue to support the Valparaiso community, providing support for those seeking substance abuse treatment, victims of domestic violence, residents with disabilities and people of all ages.
Beyond these nonprofit distributions, Valparaiso’s plan for ARPA funding allocates funds to a variety of community needs, including premium pay for eligible City workers who performed essential work during COVID and supporting a community-wide Valpo for All Generations initiative which will include a 248-acre park and community sports complex on the east side of Route 49, as well as a new Adult Center for Enrichment to be constructed on North Calumet Avenue, near the current Pines Village Retirement Community and Valparaiso Family YMCA.
“We’ve worked to balance needs and support organizations that serve Valparaiso. We have been listening to public input through online surveys, in-person events and conversations with residents. These interactions confirm that Valparaiso has many good and worthy organizations. Many creative ideas,” said Murphy. “After compensating all essential workers with an emphasis towards employees involved with public safety, we’ve chosen projects and organizations that will have the greatest positive impact going forward. Projects and organizations that will greatly serve current and future generations.”
“We look forward to continued partnerships with these fine nonprofit organizations and thank the Valparaiso community for working together during the pandemic and beyond,” said Murphy. To learn more about the City of Valparaiso, visit Valpo.us.