Nine nonprofit organizations have submitted applications asking Zebulon leaders to consider them for support as the town prepares its budget for the upcoming fiscal year.
The town has dished out the same amount of funding to the same groups for the past four years: $1,000 each to the Zebulon Chamber of Commerce, Shepherd’s Care Medical Clinic and the East Wake Education Foundation, and $500 to the annual Zebulon Martin Luther King Jr. breakfast. All those groups reapplied for varying levels of support this year.
Representatives of six of the nine applicants made brief presentations on their requests at the March 7 board of commissioners meeting.
Keri Christensen made a $1,000 pitch on behalf of Raleigh-based InterAct, where she is associate executive director. The nonprofit serves victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in Wake County. InterAct has never received funding from the town in the past.
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Kindred Spirits Farm owner Kim Haselhuhn also asked town leaders for $1,000 for her organization, which provides individuals – often middle school-age youth – and families who may be at risk socially, emotionally disabled, abused or neglected, with therapeutic support through activities involving horses. Haselhuhn told commissioners her cause, which has never received funding from the town in the past, is also starting a program to serve veterans.
Rather than request a specific dollar amount like the Zebulon Chamber of Commerce has before, Executive Director Denise Nowell asked the town board to move its support more toward a commitment to work together on economic development in town. That could result in some form of financial commitment by the town in the future.
East Wake Education Foundation Executive Director Linda Johnson attended the meeting, but she sent some of the early education-focused organization’s patrons, a mother and her two children, to the podium to lobby for $1,000 in financial support.
Annie Jean Moore requested $1,000 to go toward Zebulon First Baptist Church’s budget for the annual MLK Jr. breakfast.
Bishop Larnell Phillips asked the board for $5,000 to support Shiloh Temple’s community day event, which includes a giveaway of bookbags filled with school supplies for area students. The church has not received funding from the town in the past.
The three other groups that applied for town funding are as follows.
Shepherd’s Care Medical Clinic founder and Executive Director Leona Doner submitted a request for $2,000 for the free and charitable clinic off Pony Road that serves the uninsured.
Barry Bryant, the executive director of Raleigh-based Hopeline, requested $500 from the town. Hopeline provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention hotline services. The town made a donation of $100 to the group in 2002.
Travis Mitchell filed a request for $2,500 for Communities in Schools of Wake County, which works to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life. The organization has never received financial support from the town.
Commissioners will consider those requests as they piece together the town’s annual operating budget. That process must be completed by the end of June. The new budget year begins July 1.