October 13, 2020
Bevill State Community College has been awarded a Raising the Financial Bar for Women grant from the Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham in the amount of $45,000. Additionally, the College’s Thrive Together Walker County partnership with the Jasper Area Family Services Center and the Walker County Board of Education was awarded $50,000 for their third year. The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham awarded a total of sixteen grants for 2021, with Bevill State being the recipient of two.
The Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham awarded a $45,000.00 Raising the Financial Bar for Women Community Impact – Families Forward grant to Bevill State Community College. This grant is one of 16 awarded for our 2021 grant cycle focused on accelerating women’s economic opportunity and one of six awarded to a community college for implementing The Women’s Fund’s Student-Parent Success Model.
This project will provide educational opportunities by reducing or eliminating the financial barrier while providing access to a Success Coach who supports and encourages each student as they progress. Scholarships will be provided for eight women who meet the 2 Gen criteria (single mother, 200% or below the federal poverty level, and have kids under the age of 19). Program selection must be from a high wage/high demand job opportunity, including Electrical Systems, Welding, Automotive Technology, Diesel Technology, Advanced Engineering Design Technology, and Advanced Manufacturing Technology.
Thrive Together Walker County is a partnership between Bevill State Community College, Jasper Area Family Services Center, and the Walker County Board of Education. Three counties, Jefferson, Shelby, and Walker counties, received the three-year Thrive Together grants. Thrive Together Walker County was awarded $100,000 in 2019, $75,000 in 2020, and $50,000 for 2021.
Thrive Together Walker County works with female-led households who are at 200% or below the federal poverty level, live in Walker County area, have a high school diploma or GED, and have kids under the age of 19. Thrive Together Walker County is a combination of physical and virtual connections among service providers. The physical Hub location is at Jasper Area Family Services Center, along with two satellite entry points available at the Bevill State campuses in Jasper and Sumiton. Clients are assessed and entered the program by the Success Coach.
By housing several services within one location and maintaining strong connections with other service providers, Thrive Together Walker County uses comprehensive coaching to ensure the development of mothers and their children and increases their security in housing, education, employment, financial stability, healthcare, and social support. According to Donna Kilgore, Executive Director of the Jasper Area Family Services Center, “The growth of our clients is monitored through a common intake form and a shared data system. We aim to work with 35 families per year, breaking cycles of generational poverty, and increasing the well-being of the entire Walker County community.”
“The grants awarded by the Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham have allowed Bevill State and the Thrive Together Walker County Collaborators the opportunity to reach out to an underserved population. Single mothers living in poverty have many barriers preventing them from pursuing an education. Through Thrive Together Walker County, we have been able to alleviate some of those barriers, allowing these mothers to focus on their education, while the grant for scholarships helps to provide for tuition, fees, and books. Having the Success Coach, gives these mothers an encourager, cheerleader, and a confidant when needed. I would like to thank the Women’s Fund of Greater Birmingham for sharing our vision of alleviating poverty in the 2 Gen household. Without a doubt, an education leading to a high wage/high demand career can change lives,” stated Maurice Ingle, Director of Career Technical Education at Bevill State.
For more information contact Tana Collins-Allred at 800.648.3271 ext. 5742 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.