Kindergarten Readiness: Increase percentage of Henderson County children entering Kindergarten ready to learn.

  • Blue Ridge Literacy Council – Family Literacy: A Collaboration with Smart Start aimed at improving literacy for preschoolers in Spanish speaking homes. Provides English as a Second Language instruction to mothers of young children; early literacy services for the children; and guided instruction on how the parents can help their children develop pre-reading skills.
  • Children & Family Resource Center - Parents as Teachers Program: A parent education and support program recognized for preventing child mistreatment while enhancing child development and school achievement. Key components include bi-monthly home visits; parent group meetings; and annual developmental screenings.
  • Children & Family Resource Center - Preschoolers Reaching Educational Potential (PREP) Program: Provides free developmental screenings for children ages 3-5. When developmental delays are found, PREP makes appropriate referrals and provides follow-up intervention and training for children, parents and child care providers.
  • Children & Family Resource Center – Childcare Resource and Referral: Uses trained “Once Upon a Time” reading volunteers to model pre-literacy skills for children in pre-school settings. Volunteers work with small groups of children to instill a love of reading and critical early reading skills.
  • Helping Hand Development Center - Developmental Day Program: Provides quality child development services for children ages 3-5, with a unique commitment to serve those who are physically, emotionally, and educationally challenged. Coordinates specialized instruction and therapies for developmentally delayed children.
  • Smart Start of Henderson County - Partners in Reading Program: Increases children’s access to books through the Dolly Parton Imagination Library, mailing one age-appropriate book each month to registered children from birth until their fifth birthday. Sends regular text messages with ideas for developmentally appropriate learning activities to enrolled parents.
  • Smart Start of Henderson County – Reach Out and Read: Works through medical provider offices to promote early literacy and school readiness through the distribution of new books to children starting at their six-month checkup, and by talking with parents about the importance of reading aloud to their children.

School Success: Improve the school performance of economically disadvantaged students.

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Western North Carolina - Henderson County: Provides children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported, one-to-one mentoring relationships to change their lives for the better. Children with a mentoring relationship display improvements in academics, the avoidance of risky behaviors and an increased sense of their future.
  • Boys & Girls Club – Project Learn: Targets at-risk youth with daily homework time with trained adults; mentoring relationships; high expectations for positive behaviors and habits; and summertime educational activities to prevent learning loss.


Affordable Housing: Increase number of families and individuals who have affordable, safe, decent housing.

  • Habitat for Humanity - Infrastructure Development of Dodd Meadows Subdivision: Allows Habitat to provide access and utility services to new homes for families currently in need of affordable housing.
  • Homeward Bound of WNC - Housing Services: Moves people from homelessness into housing. Provides rental assistance and case management services to support housing stabilization and movement toward self-sufficiency.
  • Housing Assistance Corporation - Home Repair Program: Provides home repair services that alleviate mobility, livability, and health and safety issues for very low income homeowners.
  • Housing Assistance Corporation - Housing Production Program: Develops new housing units for rent or purchase by low income individuals/families. Home buyers have the option to contribute “sweat equity” as part of their purchase.
  • OnTrack Financial Education & Counseling - Affordable Housing Services: Provides professional, confidential, local counseling to individuals/families to help people afford housing. Targets three segments: senior citizens, first-time homebuyers, and people facing foreclosure.
  • Pisgah Legal Services - Elder Law: Provides free civil legal aid to older, low-income adults to enable them to live as independently as practical.
  • Pisgah Legal Services - Homeless Prevention Project: Helps low income families and individuals by providing free legal assistance to avoid homelessness.

Financial Stability:Decrease number of individuals living below the poverty line.

  • Blue Ridge Literacy Council - Adult Basic Literacy Education & Financial Stability Program: Provides adults the English communication and literacy skills needed to get and retain employment and reach full potential as individuals, parents, workers, and citizens.
  • Pisgah Legal Services - Disability Assistance Program: Assists some of our community’s most vulnerable and overlooked citizens - low-income individuals with disabilities - to access resources to improve their health and quality of life through the provision of free legal assistance
  • Pisgah Legal Services - Justice for All Program: Provides free legal assistance to the very low income Henderson County immigrant population to help them meet basic needs and obtain legal work status.
  • Safelight – Job Training: Prepares women who are survivors of domestic violence for jobs in the food service and other industries. By providing avenues for career counseling, internships and hands-on training, Safelight gives women opportunities to become financially stable and build safe, self-sufficient families.
  • Western Carolina Community Action – More Than Money: Promotes the development of local strategies to enable participating families to increase earned income and financial literacy, and reduce or eliminate the need for welfare assistance.


Healthy Youth Behaviors: Decrease the use of drugs, alcohol and tobacco among middle and high school youth. Decrease teen pregnancy.

  • Aspire Youth and Family– Kids at Work: Teaches at-risk youth healthy behaviors through hands-on application. The curriculum – taught by a professionally trained chef and a mental health professional - teaches culinary arts skills, healthy eating habits, and improved communication.
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of WNC – Healthy Youth Initiative Program: Volunteer mentors are partnered with at-risk youths in one-on-one, ongoing relationships. Mentors are coached by program staff to explore and cultivate positive “sparks” that serve as effective deterrents to risky behaviors. Mentors engage in ongoing conversations with their “littles” on positive futures and risky behaviors.
  • Blue Ridge Community Health Services - Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Program: Students identified as at-risk or already engaged in substance abuse receive a treatment plan, individual counseling, a referral to an outside substance abuse treatment, if necessary, and follow-up care. Educational sessions on the risks of drugs, alcohol and tobacco are also provided to students in the middle and high schools.
  • Blue Ridge Community Health Services - Reproductive Health Education for Adolescents: Reproductive health education for adolescents in Henderson County. Education and individual counseling are provided by a nurse through School-based Health Centers and other community locations.
  • Boys and Girls Club – SMART Moves: Helps Club members learn about and avoid alcohol, tobacco, other drugs and teen pregnancy. Fosters deeper self-awareness and self-confidence to overcome the obstacles that might impede kids’ development in leading successful lives.
  • Children & Family Resource Center – Community Based Prevention: Works one-on-one with first time teen moms to complete their high school education, acquire job skills, improve parenting abilities, and prevent future pregnancies. Also offers a five–week series to train parents on how to enhance protective parenting practices and promote parent-child discussions about sexuality and sexual risk reduction.
  • Hope Rx – Teen Hope: Provides an education campaign to local students to reduce alcohol, drug, and tobacco use, with a targeted intervention for teens with high risk factors. Through collaboration with Safelight, will provide a teen crisis phone line to counsel and refer youth to needed services.
  • Safelight – Middle School Intervention: Provides education and risk reduction to middle school aged children around the topic of dating violence and safe and healthy relationships.

Reducing Obesity: Decrease the number of obese children and adults.

  • Boys and Girls Club – Triple Play: Club members learn about physical fitness, good nutrition and how to make smart meal and snack choices. Sports leagues and social recreation activities are added to strengthen character, increase confidence and enhance the ability to relate well to others.
  • Park Ridge Health – Kid Power: Provides in-school “club” to assist Sugarloaf Elementary children diagnosed as obese to improve their health through exercise and good nutrition choices. Also provides nutrition education and enhanced exercise equipment to the entire Sugarloaf Elementary student body.
  • The Free Clinics – Health Ways: Utilizes existing social networks of family units, friend or work groups, and neighbors to provide 16 week mini-programs. Healthy weight and diabetes
    prevention goals are achieved through a focus on Meals, Movement, Monitoring, and Medication.
  • YMCA of WNC – Diabetes Prevention Program: Supports Henderson County adults with prediabetes who are seeking to improve their health and well-being. By eating healthier, increasing physical activity and losing a modest amount of weight, participants prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes.



Provide food, clothing, housing, and utilities to Henderson County residents who have experienced unexpected loss. Temporarily provide services to meet the minimum needs of Henderson County residents.

  • Calvary Episcopal Church - Food Pantry: Provides food for over 135,000 meals for Henderson County residents annually. 100% volunteer operated and open to all in need every Saturday.
  • CarePartners – Adult Day Services at Pardee: Provides a carefully-planned variety of activities and support services for families and individuals living with conditions including dementia, Alzheimer's disease, stroke, and Parkinson's disease, and for older adults who are too frail to be left at home alone safely.
  • Council on Aging – Meals on Wheels: Delivers hot mid-day meals to older, homebound adults. Meals are delivered by over 200 community volunteers who also provide social interaction and wellness checks for the clients on their routes.
  • Four Seasons - Angel Fund for Hospice and Palliative Care Program: Provides in-home Hospice care specifically to those who are unable to afford it. Patients receive symptom management for their life limiting illness and/or customized, holistic end of life care, without the burden of worrying about medical expenses.
  • MANNA FoodBank - Food Distribution in Henderson County: Assists in ending hunger by providing food to 14 agencies within Henderson County.
  • MANNA FoodBank - MANNA Packs for Kids in Henderson County Program: Provides supplemental nutrition assistance to identified children and youth at risk of hunger.
  • Medical Loan Closet - Medical Loan Closet Program: Provides free loan of medical equipment to assist individuals in recovering from illness, accident or surgical procedures.
  • Pisgah Legal Services - Domestic Violence Prevention Program: Provides free emergency legal services so that victims of domestic violence and their children can safely live apart from their abusers.
  • Safelight - Emergency Program: Provides a safe environment for women and children while overcoming barriers that prevent them from establishing and sustaining safe and self-sufficient independence.
  • Sixth Avenue Psychiatric Rehabilitation Partners – Thrive Clubhouse: Serves adults with mental health, working side by side with each individual Clubhouse member. Work includes assisting each member on their overall wellness, including physical, occupational, emotional, social, and intellectual wellness.
  • The Free Clinics – Safety Net Program: Volunteer doctors, dentists, psychiatrists, nurses, and many others provide free, high-quality care, medication assistance, and help managing chronic conditions to uninsured, low-income residents.


See the PDF containing the funded programs and descriptions.