CHARLESTON, WV – Gov. Jim Justice joined Herbert Henderson Office of Minority Affairs Executive Director Jill Upson for a ceremony at the State Capitol today, to present nearly a quarter of a million dollars in grant funding to 11 organizations across Kanawha County as part of a new pilot program that aims to improve health and economic development in underserved communities across the state.
The pilot program, called Building Resources In Diverse Geographic Environments (BRIDGE), is a comprehensive community revitalization effort with a mission of addressing poverty, improving community-wide health, stimulating labor force participation and supporting economic development. The program also aims to combat substance abuse, improve crime rates, and includes neighborhood revitalization.
“We’ve still got all kinds of problems and all kinds of social issues – whether it be this terrible drug epidemic – or all the different things that are going on,” Gov. Justice said. “But I want to do more and more. I want to get something done. That’s what this program is: a chance to get something done to help change lives.”
Individual grants worth up to $25,000 were awarded to 11 local community organizations, nonprofits, and colleges located within Kanawha County.