The City of Lowell announces the recipients of their second round of American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Ad-Hoc Grant program. This grant initiative is a one-time grant program overseen by the City’s ARPA Finance Team, in conjunction with City officials and other departments. $116,800 in funding for Ad-Hoc grants were awarded to five applicants. Funding of this round will be used to support a wide variety of projects and programs that address economic recovery efforts for Lowell residents, including: shelter and services for our homeless population, public greenspace cleanup efforts, financial wellness for low to moderate income women, food and other resources delivered to families in need, and mental health and job training support for Lowell residents post-incarceration.
“The awards exemplify our City’s commitment to compassion and progress,” said Thomas A. Golden, Jr., City Manager. “This City Council is committed to supporting these organizations and all of their work to uplift and empower the community."
The Ad-Hoc grant program is a reimbursement funding opportunity to inspire unique, yet lower cost projects and/or service programs, which support the community, but would potentially fall outside of traditional grant opportunities, and/or any other ARPA-funded grants. Additionally, the objective of the project must meet the ARPA program objectives (as outlined by the U.S. Treasury) and be aligned with Lowell’s ARPA initiatives.
Brendan Flynn, ARPA Finance Manager, noted, “It is exciting to commit ARPA funding to these additional Ad-Hoc grant recipients. The projects and services that are being funded through the various ARPA grant programs will aid the City as we continue to recover from the COVID pandemic.”
The City of Lowell allocated a total of $500,000 of ARPA funding for the Ad-Hoc grant program, with a maximum award amount of $30,000 per application. In total, the City received 27 applications requesting $795,000 in funds. $469,572 of the original allocation of $500,000 has been awarded for this grant program across both rounds to a total of 17 organizations. This has resulted in new or improved services and programs that have been started or completed since the City’s award.
A complex review process was established to measure applications against local and federal requirements, eligibility, and grant program goals. Factors such as community need, tangible impacts, measurable outcomes, and proper documentation were part of the review process to ensure grant recipients met eligibility requirements.
The second round of Ad-Hoc grant recipients are as follows:
- Life Connection Center, Inc. - $28,000 towards “COVID-19 Emergency Services for Homeless Medically Compromised Adults,” which includes homeless shelter services, meals, showers, restroom trailer, outreach, COVID testing, shelter staff, and 30 bed emergency shelter services serving Lowell’s homeless population during the pandemic
- Lowell Litter Krewe Corp. - $4,800 towards a “LLK Home Base,” which provides a secure long-term storage facility for their trailer that holds an extensive supply of tools that are used by volunteers to clean up litter in Lowell; the additional storage will allow them to acquire more tools to allow for expanded cleanup operations.
- Thrive Communities (fiscal agent: Community Teamwork, Inc.) - $30,000 towards “Circle Keeper Initiative Launch,” which will provide counseling, job training, and related evidence-based supported services (Circles of Support and Accountability) for Lowell residents reentering the community after incarceration.
- Women’s Money Matters, Inc. - $30,000 towards “Financial Wellness Program for Low to Moderate (LMI) Lowell Residents,” which will provide improved financial wellness, confidence, and economic security to 40 Lowell women living on low incomes, including (12) financial group workshops for 3-4 months, plus (12) weeks of personal financial coaching to increase knowledge/credit score/savings by the program graduation.
- YWCA Lowell - $24,000 towards a “Roaming Resource Van,” which will provide staff and supplies to double deliveries, distributing essential resources to high-risk low-income marginalized families in Lowell including food, books, clothing, personal care products, and cleaning supplies.
Next, the department will focus on finalizing the Facilities, Rehabilitation, and Renovation grant program. For more information, visit the City of Lowell’s ARPA Team webpage, https://www.lowellma.gov/1574/American-Rescue-Plan-Act, or send an email to ARPA@lowellma.gov.
The City of Lowell was awarded over $75 million by the federal government to assist with the ongoing pandemic recovery effort. A dedicated ARPA team, functioning through the City Manager’s Finance Department, is managing the City’s ARPA funding with a focus on community, compliance, and transparency to residents through the online ARPA Dashboard: https://city-lowell-ma-budget-book.cleargov.com/8250. As they become available, you can access new online grant applications in English, Khmer, Portuguese, and Spanish on the City’s ARPA Grants Opportunities page: https://www.lowellma.gov/1755/ARPA-Grant-Opportunities-Page.