The Jackson EMC Foundation board of directors awarded a total $89,302 in grants during its August meeting, including $34,900 to organizations serving Jackson County residents. Grants included:
- $12,400 to Jackson County Certified Literacy Community Program, which addresses low adult literacy rates and has a goal to reduce the functional illiteracy rate by 50% within 10 years, to provide financial assistance for students to take the GED exam.
- $10,000 to Adventure Bags, an Auburn-based nonprofit that creates comfort bags and distributes them to displaced children through local DFCS offices, domestic violence shelters, fire departments, group homes and children’s shelters in Jackson EMC’s service area to provide comfort and security in a crisis.
- $7,500 to Prevent Child Abuse Athens, a grassroots organization focused on ending neglect and abuse of children in Banks, Barrow, Clarke, Franklin, Jackson, Madison and Oglethorpe counties, to provide assistance with the First Steps primary prevention program, which offers support, parenting education materials and community resources and referrals to new parents to help them with the challenges of parenting.
- $5,000 to Burn Foundation of America, to provide financial assistance with purchasing specialized pressure garments and distraction therapy supplies, which assist in healing and help reduce stress during procedures, for burn patients and their families in all Jackson EMC counties.
Jackson EMC Foundation grants are made possible by the 197,860 participating cooperative members who have their monthly electric bills rounded to the next dollar amount through the Operation Round Up program. Their “spare change” has funded 1,560 grants to organizations and 388 grants to individuals, putting more than $15.9 million back into local communities since the program began in 2005.
Any individual or charitable organization in the 10 counties served by Jackson EMC (Clarke, Banks, Barrow, Franklin, Gwinnett, Hall, Jackson, Lumpkin, Madison and Oglethorpe) may apply for a Foundation grant by completing an application, available online at https://www.jacksonemc.com/foundation-apply or at local Jackson EMC offices. Applicants do not need to be a member of Jackson EMC.