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Southern Indiana Emergency Relief Fund Expanded

A Community Relief Fund established last year to help southern Indiana charitable groups hard hit by the recession is being extended this year.The money comes from the Paul W. Ogle Foundation and the Horseshoe Foundation of Floyd County and is administered by the Community Foundation of Southen Indiana.In 2009, more than $286,000 was disbursed, and this year up to $400,000 in additional funds will be available to help various non-profits weather the tough economy.The Hispanic Ministry of the New Albany Deanery was among the 19 groups that received some relief funds last year. It serves needy Hispanic residents of Clark, Floyd and Harrison counties and is coordinated by Father Tom Smith."It's very helpful because during the effects of the high unemployment in the region, and also the wintertime when there are also fewer construction jobs, there are Hispanic people who are struggling to meet their bills, and we've never been able to assist them before, other than to make referrals and try to make payment arrangements or something," he said.Details on how non-profits can apply for the relief funds are available from the Community Foundation of Southern Indiana, the Horseshoe Foundation of Floyd County, or by calling (812)-948-4662.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.