Common Council Jack Hopkins Social Services Funding Committee Is Accepting Applications For A Special Round Of 2020 Jack Hopkins-Recover Forward Funding

(BLOOMINGTON) – The City of Bloomington Common Council’s Jack Hopkins Social Services Funding Committee invites social services agencies serving the needs of Bloomington residents to apply for a special round of 2020 grant funding. 

In August, the Bloomington Common Council approved Mayor Hamilton’s Recover Forward initiative, which included $200,000 in additional funds for Jack Hopkins grants in 2020.

As part of the City’s broader Recover Forward efforts, the Committee intends to award funding before the end of 2020, prioritizing projects that allow agencies to provide direct relief to clients for:

  • food
  • shelter/housing
  • personal safety/hygiene products/personal protective equipment, and
  • childcare

Agencies that applied for the Spring 2020 funding cycle will be asked to submit an abbreviated application, while new applicants will be required to complete the full Recover Forward application. Both applications and more details are available on the Committee’s webpage. All applications are due by Monday, 28 September 2020, 5:00 pm.

Named in honor of former Council member Jack Hopkins who helped establish the program in 1993, the program is dedicated to funding projects that improve the lives of the City’s most vulnerable residents. Vulnerable residents include those who are low-to-moderate income, under 18 years of age, elderly, people with a disability, or otherwise disadvantaged. Since the program’s inception, the City has allocated over $4.45 million to local social services agencies.

The Committee is composed of four members of the Bloomington Common Council and three City residents with experience in social services. Council members serving are: Susan Sandberg (Chair), Matt Flaherty, Sue Sgambelluri and Ron Smith. The citizen appointments are: Tim Mayer, Mark Fraley, and Lauren McCalister.

Committee Chair Susan Sandberg advises that “[t]he Committee thoroughly considers each application for probability of success and maximum impact so that tax dollars are spent efficiently and effectively.”

The Committee is continuing a criteria change launched in 2016: it is accepting applications for operational funds that do not meet one of the exceptions to the Committee’s long-standing, one-time funding rule (pilot, bridge, or collaborative). Any request for operational funds should be accompanied by a well-developed plan for future funding.


In general, applications must meet the following criteria:

  • The program should address a previously-identified priority for social services funds (as indicated in the SCAN Report,  City’s Housing and Neighborhood Development department’s Consolidated Plan, or other community-wide survey of social service needs);
  • The funds should provide a one-time investment that, through matching funds or other fiscal leveraging, makes a significant contribution to the program;
  • This investment in the program should lead to broad and long-lasting benefits to the community.

Interested applicants should further consult the Committee’s funding criteria as outlined on the Committee’s webpage.

Important Dates

APPLICATION DEADLINEMonday, 28 September 2020, 5:00 PM
Accepted Agencies Submit Answers to Committee’s Questions.The Committee will meet on October 9th to review applications. Any questions that the Committee has will be submitted to agencies by October 12th.Friday, 16 October 2020
Committee Recommends Allocation of FundsMonday, 26 October 2020, 6:00 pm
Agencies Sign Funding Agreements    Early November 2020
Common Council Acts on Committee RecommendationsWednesday, 18 November 2020, 6:30 pm
HAND Technical Assistance Meeting for Grantees on Claims & ReimbursementsTuesday, 01 December 2020, 9:30 am