By Kristin Rover
The Clermont County Safety Net Alliance, a resource for multiple non-profit organizations, was recently launched thanks to donations from the United Way of Greater Cincinnati and other organizations in the area.
The Safety Net Alliance is a web portal that provides a way for non-profit organizations throughout Clermont County to collaborate to help low income families in the area.
“The mission is to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency services provided to Clermont County low income families through collaboration,” Billie Kuntz, executive director of Clermont County Community Services, said about the alliance.
Kuntz said a number of non-profit organizations and providers in the community will be able to communicate through the Safety Net Alliance.
“Bringing them all together in one portal, our case managers can pull this information up and assist that client even more than we’ve been able to do in the past,” Kuntz said.
Kuntz said the United Way donated $10,000 as a one-time commitment to help support and launch the web portal, which she said went online about a month ago.
She said other organizations and businesses also donated money to make the project happen, including PNC Bank Josephine Schell Russell Charitable Trust, Scripps Howard Foundation, Park National Bank, and the Batavia Rotary Club.
“The reason why the United Way considered a donation to that collaborative is we are all about working together to maximize the use of the minimal resources we have,” Debra Gordon, director of the United Way of Greater Cincinnati Eastern Area, said. “The safety net should allow us to maximize the return to the community despite the reduced resources that are available.”
Gordon said the initial cost of the network, including the set up, the license, and the training, is the most expensive part.
“Once you get it designed and you get it functional, and you get individuals trained, then you just have maintenance,” Gordon said. “The other donations are allowing us to do the second year maintenance.”
Now that the web portal is online, Gordon said a number of non-profit organizations and providers in the area are already utilizing the network to communicate.
Organizations using the network include Clermont County Community Services, Clermont County Department of Job and Family Services, Clermont County Health and Recovery Board, Clermont Senior Services, CASA For Clermont Kids as well as many local churches, ministries, food pantries, and more.
Gordon said they currently have around thirty non-profit organizations participating in the safety net alliance.
“Our goal is to have 50 by the end of the year and we will continue to try to expand,” Gordon said.
Kuntz said the organizations register and list the services they provide, and from there they can send alerts to other organizations.
She said for example a food pantry may have extra food from a shipment they received that they need to use.
“Instead of wasting it, they can get on this website and put an alert up,” Kuntz said.
Kuntz said this works in all of there focus areas including food, housing, and utilities.
“It’s a huge collaborative effort to get everyone on the same page,” Kuntz said.
For more information about the Clermont County Safety Net Alliance visit www.ccsafetynet.org.