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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Press Secretary
June 5, 2002

The Compassion Capital Fund and the Faith- and Community-Based Initiative


Overview 

The Compassion Capital Fund (CCF) is a $30 million fund that Congress appropriated to the Department of Health and Human Services in January 2002. The CCF represents the first appropriated federal funds that are specifically targeted to assist the grassroots organizations that are the focus of President Bush's faith-based and community initiative.

The CCF will be used to expand the role that faith-based and community groups play in providing social services to those in need. The CCF reflects the administration's recognition that faith-based and community organizations are uniquely situated to partner with the government in serving poor and low-come individuals and families, particularly those with the greatest needs such as families in poverty, prisoners reentering the community and their families, children of prisoners, homeless families, and at-risk youth.

Information on the availability of CCF grants will be published in the June 7, 2002, Federal Register, and grant awards will be made this fall. More information about the President's initiative and the HHS Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives is available at http://www.hhs.gov/faith/.

ACTIVITIES SUPPORTED BY THE CCF

The CCF will be used to support four activities:

Technical Assistance to Intermediary Organizations

  • Nearly $25 million will be awarded to 15-25 "intermediary organizations," which will in turn help smaller organizations operate and manage their programs effectively, access funding from varied sources, develop and train staff, expand the types and reach of social services programs in their communities, and replicate promising programs.
  • In addition to providing technical assistance, these intermediary groups will issue sub-awards directly to qualified faith- and community-based organizations to expand or replicate promising or best practices in targeted areas. Priority for sub-awards will be given to organizations that focus on homelessness, hunger, at-risk children, transition from welfare to work, and those in need of intensive rehabilitation such as addicts or prisoners.
  • To encourage organizations to work in partnership with the federal government, intermediary organizations will be expected to provide at least 50 percent of the amount of federal funds requested (i.e., one-third of the proposed total budget).
  • CCF funds may not be used to support religious practices such as religious instruction, worship or prayer.
  • Intermediary organizations will be selected to receive funding based on a competitive review process. HHS is seeking applications from a diverse range of organizations able to assist a diverse group of faith-based and community organizations that represent different organizational or religious affiliations. Awards will be announced before the end of September 2002.

Compassion Capital National Resource Center

  • Approximately $2 million will be used to establish the CCF National Resource Center.
  • The National Resource Center will work directly with the intermediary organizations to ensure that faith- and community-based organizations receive effective and appropriate technical assistance, and it will develop a comprehensive plan to oversee and coordinate the work of intermediary organizations that receive federal funding.
  • The National Resource Center will also develop tools that will be useful and accessible to all interested faith-based and community groups, regardless of whether they are working with a funded intermediary. For example, the National Resource Center will develop and maintain a Web site that addresses a wide array of topics useful to faith-based and community organizations, such as "best practices" to meet the needs of individuals and families, and evaluation and assessment of program outcomes and effectiveness. It will also develop manuals on specific topics that will assist faith-based and community organizations.

Research Regarding Best Practices and Services of Intermediary Organizations

  • Approximately $1.6 million will be used to support research on the services and best practices of intermediary organizations and the faith-based and community organizations they serve.

Field-Initiated Research Grants

  • Approximately $1 million will be awarded to five to eight organizations to support short-term research projects that will contribute to the knowledge base regarding roles and promising approaches by diverse types of faith- and community-based organizations that focus on homelessness, hunger, at-risk children, the transition from welfare to work, and intensive services for those most in need such as addicts and prisoners.

This document is not necessarily endorsed by the Almanac of Policy Issues. It is being preserved  in the Policy Archive for historic reasons.

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