MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers earlier this week announced more than $82 million in Equitable Recovery Grants and visited grant awardees across the state, including in Milwaukee, Appleton, Madison, La Crosse, and Racine.
“From Beloit to Lac du Flambeau, the organizations receiving these grants have been on the frontlines of providing support to communities that have seen disparate outcomes throughout this pandemic, both in health and economic well-being,” said Gov. Evers in his announcement. “We must continue to work together to make sure that as our state is recovering, every community and every family is recovering with us. That’s critical to ensuring our state’s long-term success and building a Wisconsin that works for everyone.”
Part of a nearly $650 million investment allocated by the governor for community building and recovery efforts statewide, the Equitable Recovery Program was first announced in April 2021 and provides more than $50 million to fund health, early childhood, and education services or programming, with an additional more than $31 million going to support organizations providing economic support, housing, and environmental justice services.
To highlight the good work organizations who received these funds are doing across the state, Gov. Evers started his statewide tour in Milwaukee on Tuesday morning at The Literacy Lab. The Literacy Lab provides kids from low-income families with individualized reading instruction to help them improve their literacy skills and reach greater academic achievement. The Literacy Lab received a $1 million grant to continue their good work educating kids, creating opportunities for young men of color, and increasing representation in the field of education. Photos of the governor’s visit to The Literacy Lab are available here and here.
The governor continued his tour on Tuesday with a visit in Appleton to the Long Cheng Community Center to award the Wisconsin United Coalition of Mutual Assistance Association (WUCMAA) of Appleton a $1 million grant. WUCMAA works to support community development in underserved populations across the state, including Hmong and Southeast Asian communities. Photos of the governor’s visit to Appleton are available here and here.
On Wednesday, Gov. Evers visited three organizations in the Madison area who were grant awardees, starting at Today Not Tomorrow Inc. which received a $978,872 grant to continue their work supporting families and infants in the Madison area, specifically working to address disparate outcomes in infant and maternal health for Black moms and babies. A photo of the governor’s visit is available here. Following this, he visited Vera Court Neighborhood Center which received a $992,892 grant to continue their work helping Latino and Black families, low-income families, veterans, and women by providing education and job training opportunities. A photo of the governor’s visit to Vera Court Neighborhood Center is available here. Finally, the governor concluded his tour in Madison by stopping at Rebalanced-Life Wellness Association (RLWA) which is a men’s health center inside a Black barbershop. RLWA works to provide healthcare services in the community and received a $350,000 grant to continue expanding their service from a free preventative screening service to a free specialty healthcare center for uninsured Black and Brown men in underserved zip codes. A photo of the governor’s visit to RLWA is available here.
On Thursday, Gov. Evers visited the YWCA La Crosse—REACH Service and Resource Center to award a grant of $1 million to YWCA La Crosse and $545,000 to Couleecap Inc. These two organizations provide critical services to La Crosse and the surrounding community by connecting unserved or underserved families and individuals to available resources, including rent and utility assistance, tenant resources and legal assistance for those facing eviction or other housing challenges, mental and behavioral health services, and helping folks find steady, sustainable employment. Photos of the governor’s visit to La Crosse are available here and here.
Finally, the governor concluded his statewide tour with a stop in Racine at the Women’s Resource Center on Thursday. The Women’s Resource Center provides crisis intervention, advocacy, education, and prevention services for victims and survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. The organization received a grant of $210,056.50 to re-establish their SafeStart initiative which educates local youth on dating violence, empowers them to engage in healthy relationship behaviors, and disrupts the cycle of violence. Photos of the governor’s visit to Racine are available here and here.
The Equitable Recovery Grant Program is administered by the Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA), with more than 100 grants being awarded statewide, ranging in size from $17,712.50 to a maximum of $1 million. A full list of grant awardees and additional information can be found on the program website under award announcement.