(Southern Kentucky) – United Way of Southern Kentucky announced today that it has made additional investments into the critical issue area of Education in Allen, Butler, Logan, and Simpson Counties.

These additional allocations are a part of the first year of investments into United Way’s new Community Impact focus on the issues of Education, Income, Health, and Safety Net. This platform was developed with a base of more than 18 months of research including 55 community conversations, nearly 5,000 surveys and extensive secondary research evaluation.

Guided by the community’s strong commitment to Education, the United Way of Southern Kentucky Board of Directors made Education the top priority in all communities served earmarking 45% of the available allocations pool towards Education initiatives. In Allen, Butler, Logan and Simpson counties there were remaining Education dollars based on the lack of sufficient applications in the areas of Kindergarten Readiness and/or College and Career Readiness. This gap in program applications allowed for several organizations to submit an application for the summer investments process and subsequent volunteer review during this abbreviated timeline.

United Way’s Regional Education Committee worked over the summer to determine the best approach to allocating the remaining Education dollars that were available after the initial allocations process in Allen, Butler, Logan and Simpson Counties. The Regional Education Committee is made up of Education experts from across the region who volunteered their time to review all the applications submitted for summer Education investments and evaluated the program descriptions and outcomes, matching them against the United Way Community Impact Platform strategies. These dedicated volunteers took their jobs seriously to ensure the utmost impact would be made through this funding.

Agencies were invited via email on June 30th to apply for funding for the remaining dollars in the areas of Education including Kindergarten Readiness and College and Career Readiness for the remaining allocation funding. On July 29th, the Regional Education Committee along with the chairs of the applicable county allocations committees met in order to review the 13 applications for Education Summer investments. The members of this Committee included: Joe Tinius (Committee Chair), Dr. Benny Lile, Ashley Lillard, Stacy Ramer, Lisa Rice, Jerri Rowland, Dana Sullivan, Steve Thurmond, Dana Russell, and Ken Campbell. The applications represented over $100,000 in requests for the $65,382 available for this special allocation.

The United Way Board of Directors reviewed and approved the 2016-17 Education Summer Investments program funding recommendations as presented by the Education Committee on August 2, 2016. 

As a result, the following funding amounts have been awarded to the following programs:

Allen County:

            Kindergarten Readiness:

Allen County Schools: Stepping Stones $4,000

Allen County Health Department: HANDS Program $7,843

Butler County:

            College and Career Readiness:

            Butler County Schools: Family and Consumer Science Culinary Program (split) and

                                                  Agriculture Program (split): 4,000

Logan County:

            Kindergarten Readiness:

            Logan County Schools: Born Learning Academy: $12,750

            Logan County Schools: Little Cougar Academy: $3,371

            Russellville Independent Schools: Little Panther’s Academy: $6,742

            College and Career Readiness:

            Logan County Schools: Why Try Program: $5,500

            Logan County Schools: College and Career Day Camp: $4,100

            Russellville Independent Schools: E3: Encounter, Explore, Experience $9,879

Simpson County:

            Kindergarten Readiness:

            Simpson County Schools: Little Cats and Jump Start Academy: $4,132

            College and Career Readiness:

            Simpson County Schools: College and/or Career Ready Preparation: $3,065

“These additional investments are truly an extension and a deepening of United Way’s Community Impact Platform,” says Keshia Ingram, United Way of Southern Kentucky Director of Community Impact. “While I am hopeful that we will have sufficient applications during the upcoming allocations cycle and thus will not have remaining dollars to allocate in summer 2017, I am excited about what this summer process was able to do. With this shortened process we were able to connect with four brand new partners that have never been linked to United Way of Southern Kentucky in this way before. These organizations are passionate about educating children in our community. Their innovative and hands-on programs will help to move the needle forward in both kindergarten readiness and college and career readiness.”


United Way of Southern Kentucky (UWSK) is a local, independent, non-profit organization that works to identify and address the issues that matter most, change conditions and improve lives. The mission of United Way of Southern Kentucky is to be the leader in bringing together the resources to build a stronger, more caring community. United Way is focused on the building blocks for good quality of life – Education, Income, Health and Safety Net. Therefore, the vision of United Way is a Southern Kentucky where all residents are educated, healthy, and financially stable. Incorporated as a charitable non-profit entity in 1956, UWSK has long served a major role in the community by bringing people together to create opportunities that make a measurable difference in the quality of life for people where they live and work.

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