Murfreesboro, TN — United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties received over $1.6M through the Families First Community Grant for the Launch Point program. The Tennessee Department of Human Services (TDHS) selected United Way of Rutherford and Cannon Counties’ Launch Point program as one of 40 programs to receive the Families First Community Grant, which began in spring 2023. This project is funded under a grant contract with the State of Tennessee.
According to TDHS, “The Families First Community Grant program was created as an additional method to invest TANF funds in ways to provide assistance to low-income families and help them move towards sustainable economic stability.”
Launch Point is a United Way initiative designed to improve the financial stability of families residing in Rutherford and Cannon Counties. The TDHS grant and partnership enables your local United Way to provide Launch Point Success Coaches to assist eligible, low-income families in achieving goals and navigating available resources for up to 18 months.
The Launch Point model uses Success Coaches embedded within local community partners. Success Coaches will focus on the family’s transportation, childcare, and housing barriers. These barriers can prevent families from attending work or seeking additional job training. Launch Point works hand in hand with community partners and our VITA program to offer these resources to help families thrive.
The funding also allows United Way to join forces with community partners to provide numerous financial services, including credit and money management, first-time home buyer counseling, financial coaching, budgeting, workshops, free tax preparation, job skills training, and college assistance programs.
Kristen Swann, Vice President of Collective Impact and Strategic Initiatives, stated, “One of United Way’s goals centers around providing support for the ALICE (Asset-Limited, Income-Constrained, Employed) population in our community. This data tells us that almost half of all residents of Rutherford and Cannon Counties are working but cannot meet the true cost of living here. Launch Point is a way to provide wrap-around services and support to families to help prevent crisis, help them stabilize, and help them imagine what thriving looks like for their family.”
Launch Point is a part of United Way’s 2030 Bold Goals Initiative, a 10-year plan to improve the lives of families in our local community through six vital areas, including financial stability. The TDHS funding and partnership will help United Way achieve its financial stability Bold Goals by allowing them to meet families where they are when they need it most.
To learn more about Launch Point, visit https://www.yourlocaluw.org/launchpoint.