Steps 4 Life Director Cynthia McGuigan

Steps 4 Life Director Cynthia McGuigan

Inland Empire Community Foundation recently awarded a $5,000 grant to a Redlands-based program that helps the homeless.

Steps 4 Life was one of three regional charities selected in the Lift Up Local program late last year to receive $5,000 apiece. There were 522 entries.

“Steps 4 Life's mission is to empower individuals and families to receive the necessary training, education, and life-skills to re-enter society as positive individuals to community,” said a press release. “Steps 4 Life serves many populations, including: veterans, homeless, domestic violence victims, those recovering from substance use and mental health disorders, victims of sex trafficking and individuals who are re-integrating from the legal system.”

Steps 4 Life also received a $20,000 grant from COVID-19 relief from San Bernardino County and the Community Foundation announced on Feb. 5. And on Tuesday, the Redlands City Council approved $12,200 to Steps 4 Life from the federal Community Development Block Grant program.  

The other Lift Up Local grantees were:

• Animal Friends of the Valleys, Lake Elsinore: Animal Friends of the Valleys is dedicated to promoting the humane care of animals through education and a humane, proactive animal services program. The organization is also committed to preventing the suffering of animals and to ending pet overpopulation in the communities they serve.

• Friends of the

This organization promotes support for literature and libraries within the Coachella Valley and raises funds to benefit the College of the Desert Library.

“As nonprofits continue to be impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, we are encouraged by the outpouring of support from the community and the 11,000 nominations we received through the Lift Up Local program,” said Michelle Decker, CEO of the Community Foundation.

“Congratulations to all three of the recipient organizations and thank you Inland Empire for showing so much love and care for our nonprofit community.”

On Tuesday night, the Redlands City Council approved $406,739 in total Community Development Block Grants. Each participating city's annual allocation is based on the most current U.S. Census statistics for poverty, overcrowded housing conditions, and population.

The allocation is an estimate and could change.

Of the total estimate amount, 15% or $61,011 is the maximum amount available to fund eligible nonprofit service agencies in 2021-22.

The council can choose to award some, none or all of the maximum available funds each year. The county limits the total number of allowable projects that Redlands can fund each year to no more than nine.

The city's 2021-22 final funding recommendations are included in the one-year action plan prepared by the county and presented to the Board of Supervisors during a public hearing in April.

Once approved, the plan is submitted by the county before the deadline on May 15. Funding would become available to awardees on July 1.

The council authorized staff to make any necessary minor adjustments to the final awards if the final allocation is more or less than the planning estimate and authorized the city manager to execute the Community Development Block Grant agreements with the public service agencies once the final allocation is released.

Community Development Block Grants

  • Sylvan Park Restroom Rehabilitation Project: $345,739
  • Boys & Girls Club of Greater Redlands-Riverside, Youth Services Program: $12,200
  • YMCA East Valley, Legal Aid Program: $12,200
  • Steps 4 Life, Rapid Re-Housing Program: $12,200
  • San Bernardino Sexual Assault Services, Supportive Services for Victims of Violence: $12,200
  • Family Service Association Senior Nutrition Program: $12,200