PADD Receives National Association of Development Organizations 2021 Impact Award

WASHINGTON, DC – The Pennyrile Area Development District based in Hopkinsville, Kentucky has received a 2021 Aliceann Wohlbruck Impact Award from the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) for the Pennyrile ADD Home Delivered/Curbside COVID Meals Project.

The COVID-19 pandemic brought many tragic circumstances to the forefront, but it also brought some unexpected relief to the nine counties of the Pennyrile Region in regards to food insecurity and senior hunger. For over 20 years the Pennyrile Area Agency on Aging & Independent Living has maintained a waiting list for individuals attempting to access Home Delivered Meals. There is always a waiting list. Prior to the COVID19 pandemic, there were approximately 260 individuals on the waiting list for home delivered meals throughout the Pennyrile Region. Additional federal funding received because of the COVID-19 pandemic, allowed all of those individuals on the waiting list to receive access to home delivered meals 5 days per week.

In addition to serving all those on the waiting list, the Pennyrile ADD was also able to serve an additional 1,170 clients (as of June 30, 2021) with home delivered meals. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic those individuals would have been placed on a waiting list with no immediate access to services and would have stayed on the waiting list for months to years before receiving services.

The COVID19 pandemic negatively impacted the Pennyrile Region, but we also saw the positive impacts in the Pennyrile Region. One of those positive factors was the outpouring of support from the community. Individuals of all ages reached out to assist the senior centers to volunteer and help with meal prep, meal packaging, meal distribution, and many other tasks. The community also came to the rescue when supplies were in critical demand and low supply. Many individuals from the community purchased and donated needed supplies to keep our senior centers fully operational in regards to the distribution of home delivered meals. When so many were struggling during the COVID19 pandemic it was heartwarming to see the community step up to assist those in need and the most vulnerable population.

The Pennyrile Area Agency on Aging & Independent Living, through a subcontract with Pennyrile Allied Community Services, provides hot, freshly prepared meals 5 days per week to all nine counties in the Pennyrile Region. In the state of Kentucky, this makes the Pennyrile Region unique in that we don’t regularly utilize frozen or shelf-stable meals for daily meal needs. All clients receiving the home delivered meals also benefit from the impact of the interaction with the meal delivery staff. This offers assurance and comfort to many of the seniors served who have no other daily interaction with people, especially those that were struggling with isolation and loneliness due to the COVID19 pandemic. Those clients understand and are comforted in knowing that someone will be checking on them.

The additional federals funds provided the means to help address senior hunger & food insecurity on a larger scale than ever before in the Pennyrile Region. Pennyrile AAAIL continues to provide meals with additional federal funding to help meet the needs 718 senior citizens (out of the total 1,170 additional clients) in the Pennyrile Region.

NADO is a Washington, DC-based membership association of regional development organizations that promote programs and policies that strengthen local governments, communities, and economies through regional cooperation, program delivery, and comprehensive strategies. The association’s Impact Awards program recognizes regional development organizations and their partners for improving the economic and community competitiveness of our nation’s regions and local communities.

Award-winning projects were recognized during NADO’s 2021 Annual Training Conference, held in Portland, OR on October 16-19. The 2021 class of award recipients consists of 102 projects from 70 organizations spanning 24 states. These projects are presented in an interactive “Story Map” developed by NADO that includes project summaries, partners, and images. The Story Map is available online at: https://www.nado.org/2021_impactawards/.

“During the past 20 months, regional development organizations across the country have shown just how valuable they are in supporting the local communities they serve,” said 2019-2021 NADO President Kevin Byrd, executive director of the New River Valley Regional Commission, located in Radford, VA. “From COVID-19 response and recovery initiatives, to workforce and economic development projects, to social services programs and much more, the 2021 NADO Impact Awardees highlight the many ways our members work on the ground every day to improve quality of life in their regions.”

The NADO Impact Awards are presented in honor of the late Aliceann Wohlbruck who was NADO’s first executive director and served 24 years as a tireless champion for regional approaches to economic development in rural communities.

For more information about this award-winning project, contact Jason Vincent at 270-
886-9484 or via email at [email protected].

Since 1967 the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) has provided advocacy, education, networking, and research for the national network of 540 regional development organizations. NADO members provide professional, programmatic, and technical assistance to over 2,300 counties and 15,000 municipalities.

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