Issue-Based Grant Information

United Way of Chatham County 2021 Issue-Based Grant

The United Way of Chatham County selected four nonprofit programs to receive funding from their first ever Issue-Based Grant. A total of $87,500 will support programs making an impact on homelessness and COVID-19 learning loss among K-12 students.

In total, three agencies were awarded the special funding: Communities In Schools, The Boys and Girls Club and Chatham County NC Homeless Shelters.

“Increasing the financial and human resources available for providing human care services to county residents is The United Way- it is our mission and the reason we exist. We have a responsibility to be agile and get creative in order to direct resources to the most critical needs in Chatham County. This is how we will continue moving the needle for change.”

Katie Childs, United Way of Chatham County Executive Director

Click the agency names below to learn about the programs funded by the Issue-Based Grant.

A new organization, Chatham County NC Homeless Shelters, was awarded funding to increase the resources available to Chatham’s homeless population through a program called Love Chatham. Chatham County NC Homeless Shelters is an organization that provides temporary shelter and emergency food to those in need in Chatham County. Now a certified 501(c)(3), the agency began serving the community in December 2020. The organization is a collaboration of efforts, led by dedicated community members, between Freedom Family Church of Siler City, Tyson’s Creek Baptist Church of Bear Creek, and First Wesleyan Church in Siler City.

United Way funding will allow the organization to hire a part-time program manager to direct services, and purchase supplies to open temporary shelters within partner churches. The Love Chatham program will shelter 1,200 individuals this year and offer crisis food to 1,000 Chatham County residents. Ultimately, the goal of Chatham County NC Homeless Shelters is to open a permanent homeless shelter in Chatham County.

The Boys and Girls Club was awarded Issue-Based Grant funding to support education across the county. Funds were awarded for their Bridge the Gap Program at the Wren Family Center in Siler City and to support the opening of their Pittsboro Club this fall. The Bridge the Gap program will serve students at the Wren Family Center in Siler City to mitigate learning loss due to COVID-19 with hands-on, project-based programs.

United Way’s investment in the Pittsboro Club will support the Power Hour Program for the club’s first year. Power Hour helps students ages 6-18 achieve academic success by providing homework support, tutoring and technology engaged activities. In total, the United Way Issue-Based Grant funding will allow the Boys and Girls Club to enhance the education of up to 225 Chatham County School Students this year.

Communities In Schools was granted funding to expand the role of the High School Success Coach at Jordan Matthews High School. The program offers integrated student supports to youth referred and enrolled in the program. Supports include tutoring and academic assistance, parent engagement, social emotional support, regular check-ins, basic needs, mental and physical health resources, and case management. United Way funding will provide tutoring and summer enrichment with assistance in math, science, and language arts to at least 40 students at Jordan Matthews High School.

Housing & Homelessness

In 2020 and currently through 2021 our agencies have been inundated with requests for assistance to help Chatham residents negatively impacted by COVID-19. In 2020 the Salvation Army saw a 65% increase in housing assistance needs (over 2019), and 211 calls for housing and utility assistance accounted for 42.7% of all calls to 211. Utility assistance calls increased 87.9% from 2019, and housing calls increased 52%.

The Issue-Based Grant Funding will:

  • Provide essential services to homeless residents.
  • Re-house homeless individuals and families.
  • Prevent families and individuals from becoming homeless. 


In 2020 nearly 22% of Chatham County Schools students received a grade of D or F in class during the first two grading periods of the fall semester, compared to 12.56% in 2019.

The Issue-Based Grant Funding will:

  • Provide essential services such as after-school tutoring, in-school tutoring, education services in math, science and language arts for children with a D or F. Includes books, computers, internet hotspots, computer programs or other needed supplies for children to achieve success. 
  • Provide Summer Slide prevention. Essential services must address the loss of academic gain from the previous school year, and should address reading, writing and mathematics. 
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