Waco: United Way cuts funding to 4 nonprofits

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WACO, Texas (KWTX) The United Way of Waco-McLennan County is changing the way it funds local organizations, and the Salvation Army, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Waco, the YMCA of Central Texas and the Community Cancer Association are feeling a pinch as a result.

Funding for the Boys and Girls Club, the YMCA and the cancer association will be cut by 20 percent or less, but funding for the Salvation Army will be cut by 83 percent next year, from $148,140 to $25,000.

"I just couldn't imagine how we are going to absorb the loss like that. With no real prior expectation that funds on that scale could be taken away,” Salvation Army Regional Coordinator Maj. Bradley Caldwell, Regional Coordinator said Thursday.

“At the beginning of the year if we don't have funds to replace what's been withdrawn from our allocation we'll have to close shelters," he said.

United Way of Waco McLennan County Executive Director Barbara Mosacchio says the way funds are allocated to the 21 local nonprofits United Way supports will drastically change as they try to streamline operations,

"In January we'll implement a strategic plan and we will be getting that process of shifting our funding to a grant-making model, with very clear criteria of what kind of outcomes were looking for."

The Salvation advisory board held an emergency meeting Thursday afternoon to discuss how to handle the loss of $123,000 next year.

Caldwell says the Salvation Army will need community support immediately.

"We want to help the people who are the most needy and the most vulnerable and that is the commitment of our mission and if you believe in that mission and you believe in expressing that compassion we simply ask you to help us find support,” he said.

Mosachio says giving to the United Way has declined over the past five years and that's why the changes are being implemented.

The Salvation Army can apply for grants again next year, she said.

"There is great hope that as we raise more money and we have more grant making dollars available, that they'll be able to come back and apply for funding and be successful"

"Impacting generational poverty is our focus, " she said.