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New applications sought for community resilience grant
June 16, 2022

KNOXVILLE -- Applications are now being accepted for a third $20,000 grant to fund a project that improves community resilience by strengthening our city’s social-cultural environment.

On June 2, a panel of judges selected two winners of the Mayor's Social Innovation Challenge: SEEED Knox and Emerald Youth Foundation. Each organization and their partners will receive $20,000 for their winning projects, which address the mental health and support networks of Knoxville’s young people.

“A resilient community is one that has programs and institutions that recognize trauma and mental health challenges and the ways we can address and treat those issues together,” says Community Engagement Coordinator Kathy Mack.

The deadline to apply for the grant is Monday, July 11, at 11:59 p.m. via the United Way of Greater Knoxville’s website. A committee of community volunteers will review applications and select a winner to be announced in August. Groups that applied for, but didn’t receive, the earlier round of funding are encouraged to apply again.

Proposed projects must be collaborative, community driven and community led; address current gaps in services; support underserved youth; and position youth as the experts on the barriers they face and what they need to succeed. Examples of projects that meet the category description include:

• An assessment and awareness campaign that creates a shared community language and understanding of youth trauma and mental health needs.

• Bring a trauma-informed approach to systems youth interact that do not already have that knowledge or language.

• A public relations campaign that helps normalize the use of mental health services by sharing the stories of well-known community individuals.

The Mayor’s Social Innovation Challenge is a collaboration between the City of Knoxville, United Way of Greater Knoxville, University of Tennessee College of Social Work, Mental Health Association, Knoxville Chamber, and Knoxville Area Urban League. The goal of the new competitive grant is to encourage organizations to seek out new partners and original ways of thinking about youth mental health and both individual and community resilience.


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