Spencer Co. Council on Aging struggling to make up funds cut by United Way

Spencer Co. Council on Aging struggling to make up funds cut by United Way
Published: May. 31, 2023 at 6:30 PM CDT
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SPENCER CO., Ind. (WFIE) - A Spencer County nonprofit is losing a big chunk of its budget and its executive director says they are struggling to make up the difference.

We first introduced executive director Angela Turner with the Spencer County Council on Aging back in January, when we broke down the changes to United Way of Southwest Indiana’s new funding model.

[Previous Story: 14 News Investigates: United Way of Southwestern Indiana’s new funding model, impact]

Turner says the nonprofit is getting its last check from United Way next month and the financial pressure is growing.

“We try to do what we can for everyone,” says Turner. “But if the funds aren’t there. The funds aren’t there.”

Difficult decisions could be coming soon for the Spencer County Council on Aging. Turner says it’s because a relied-on contribution from united way officially comes to an end in June.

The annual donation was around $20,000 and they counted on that donation for years.

“It’s a horrible feeling,” says Turner. “You know we’re here to support our community and make sure they’re getting what they need, physically and mentally and to cut funding for any nonprofit is devastating.”

In January, the United Way of Southern Indiana gave the non profit notice it would gradually step down its contribution.

United Way leaders said in 2021 they would be shifting their focus to upward mobility.

Turner says, despite efforts, Spencer County council on aging has not been able to fill the financial hole.

“20,000 from a $200,000 budget that we work on every year. That’s a big cut,” says Turner.

Turner says after January, she did not see more community donations come in.

“You can be a 100 years old, or a day old. We’re going to transport you if we can fit you into our schedule,” says Turner.

She says if enough donations don’t come in, they will be forced to make cuts somewhere.

“Where do you make that money up? Do you cut transportation? Do you cut senior center? Do you cut in gas? What do you do?”

By the end of 2023, 10 former partner agencies will lose United Way funding, with the other 15 getting their last checks next year.

Turner says any donation is greatly appreciated and will be put to good use.

In addition to donating money, you can support the nonprofit in other ways.

Turner says they have several bus trips coming up later this year, with proceeds benefitting the nonprofit. She says you can also support the council by buying pork sandwiches and sweet treats at the Cruise the Rock car show in downtown Rockport.

The first car show is June 10.