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By Joe Naiman
Village News Correspondent 

Neighborhood Reinvestment Program grants allocated


Last updated 7/20/2018 at 9:20am

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors' allocation of Neighborhood Reinvestment Program grants June 19 included funding for Camp Pendleton's Devil Pups program, the Fallbrook Child Development Center, Fallbrook Youth Baseball, the Fallbrook Village Association, Friends of the Fallbrook Community Center, Riding Emphasizing Individual Needs and Strengths, and Support the Enlisted Project.

The supervisors' 5-0 vote approved grants of: $27,500 to Devil Pups, Inc., for the purchase of uniforms and challenge coins; $19,250 to the Fallbrook Child Development Center to replace the roof on the Iowa Street building; $30,000 to the Fallbrook Community Youth Baseball Council for grounds improvements and equipment purchases; $28,000 to Fallbrook Village Association, Inc., for the Fallbrook Summer Nights events and another $10,000 to FVA for Fallbrook Railroad Heritage Park; $16,592 to The Friends of the Fallbrook Community Center to purchase items for the community center hall; $25,000 to REINS for the purchase of a solar energy system, and $7,000 to STEP for the purchase of shelving units and storage totes.

"They certainly need the money," said supervisor Bill Horn.

The Neighborhood Reinvestment Program is intended to provide grants to nonprofit organizations for the furtherance of public purposes at the regional and community levels. In addition to nonprofit organizations, county supervisors can also fund schools and fire departments, and supervisors can also use money from their budgets to supplement other county funding for specific county projects such as parks, roads, and libraries.

Each county supervisor recommends the allocation of his or her Neighborhood Reinvestment Program funds, although those allocations must be approved by a majority of the board. The grants to the Fallbrook organizations were from Horn's District Five budget.

The Devil Pups youth program was founded by retired Marines in 1954. More than 50,000 boys and girls have attended the 10-day annual camp in July, and approximately 3,000 applications for the Devil Pups are received annually.

The "Growth Through Challenge" program includes physical fitness challenges, obstacle courses, educational sessions with Marine Corps personnel, and a tour of the USS Midway Museum. Each graduate receives an inspirational token of achievement, and the Devil Pups Challenge Coins as well as participant uniforms will be funded by the Neighborhood Reinvestment Program grant.

"Devil Pups is one of my favorite youth programs for teaching discipline, good citizenship, and respect," Horn said.

The nonprofit Fallbrook Child Development Center was established in 1975. Up to 48 children from low-income families whose parents are working or in school attend the early childhood education and day care program, and more than 750 children are Fallbrook Child Development Center alumni. The staff attempts to promote each child's intellectual, social, and physical development to prepare the children for kindergarten. The Iowa Street building includes three classrooms, a kitchen, a restroom, and an administrative office. Multiple past repairs to the roof did not eliminate the need for a new roof.

"The Fallbrook Child Development Center is a critical asset for low-income working families," Horn said. "The roof of the main building has been repaired several times, so this grant will help pay for a brand new roof."

Fallbrook Youth Baseball is affiliated with Pony League Baseball and hosts tournaments which generate revenue both for the community and for Fallbrook Youth Baseball itself. The Neighborhood Reinvestment Program money can be used to purchase an electrical box, a pitching mound, nets, lights, a sign, asphalt, a chain-link fence, dugout, and bullpen repairs, and to remodel the restroom and snack bar.

(The grant agreement includes purposes on which the money may be spent; if not all of the eligible expenses can be covered by the grant, the money can be used for any of the projects specified in the grant agreement.)

"The Fallbrook Youth Baseball program is in need of some basic equipment and upgrades," Horn said.

The goal of the FVA is to enhance the downtown Fallbrook area and make that part of town a destination location. Fallbrook Summer Nights creates awareness of ongoing park programs (the FVA maintains Jackie Heyneman Park, the Vince Ross Village Square as well as Fallbrook Railroad Heritage Park), encourages the arts, and promotes public safety and awareness.

The Neighborhood Reinvestment Program grant for Fallbrook Summer Nights will be used for the purchase and installation of signs, sanitation facilities and trash cans, lighting and generators, and tents and to develop and obtain brochures, banners, and promotional materials for this year's Fallbrook Summer Nights series.

"Fallbrook's Hot Summer Nights has been an annual tradition for more than two decades," Horn said. "This $28,000 grant will pay for signs, porta-potties, lights, generators, tents, trash cans, and promotional materials for another memorable event."

Fallbrook Railroad Heritage Park is the most recent new project of the Fallbrook Village Association. The park will educate the public about Fallbrook's railroad heritage and also serve as a community stage for special events. The Neighborhood Reinvestment Program allocation will help fund the purchase, delivery, and placement of the train caboose at the park, the design and construction of a train station replica, historical displays, and landscaping.

"Railroad Heritage Park will soon be one more reason to visit downtown Fallbrook," Horn said.

The Friends of the Fallbrook Community Center is a nonprofit organization with 501(c)(3) status and allows the Fallbrook Community Center to be operated and maintained with volunteer staff members (with some assistance from the county's Department of Parks and Recreation). Approximately 4,000 people utilize the Fallbrook Community Center each month, including approximately 3,500 who use the main event hall for meetings, social gatherings, or other events.

Some elderly Fallbrook residents have expressed concern about the safety of the metal folding chairs at the Fallbrook Community Center while the addition of blackout blinds will improve the climate inside the hall and will also allow the hall to have additional activities. In addition to the purchase of new chairs and blinds, the Neighborhood Reinvestment Program money may also be used for the restoration of windows.

"The Fallbrook Community Center is a popular gathering place for senior citizens, and this $16,000 grant will make it a cool place, too," Horn said. "The money will be used to upgrade the windows, buy blackout blinds, and purchase sturdier chairs to sit on."

REINS is also a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and utilizes equestrian therapy for disabled children and adults. REINS began the process of installing solar power at their farm in the 4400 block of South Mission Road in 2017.

"REINS offers therapeutic horseback riding to disabled children and adults and is such a great local option for many disabling conditions," Horn said. "A $25,000 grant will help them transition to solar power at their 10-acre facility."

Support The Enlisted Project provides assistance to active-duty and recently-discharged veterans and their families and has programs to help service members and veterans facing financial crises. The programs focus on long-term financial self-sufficiency through counseling, education, and grants. More than 2,200 individuals received donated items during 2017.

"Support The Enlisted Project offers a helping hand to thousands of junior enlisted service members in financial crisis," Horn said. "This $7,000 grant will boost outreach efforts by paying for shelving units and storage totes for donated goods."


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