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Local nonprofits big earners in Avenues for Hope challenge

The numbers are in and local nonprofits are top earners in the 2015 Avenues for Hope Challenge. In total, $317,469 was raised for 32 nonprofits statewide.

The annual fundraising event is designed to help bring funds to Idaho nonprofits helping the homeless in their communities. Along with donations from businesses and individuals, the Idaho Housing and Finance Association, Home Partnership Foundation and other sponsors also supplied grants and matching funds.

In eastern Idaho, NeighborWorks Pocatello was the top earner with$32,795.85. It also was the third top earner in the whole state.

What brought the organization success this year? Executive Director Mark Dahlquist said people were able to see them in action more so than in years past.

“All nonprofits are going to elevate the community, but I think we just marketed (ourselves) really well,” Dahlquist said. “We’ve done a good job about making people feel good with what we do to elevate the community.”

It’s hard not to notice what NeighborWorks has done. Over the years, the nonprofit has done more than 400 rehab and home-building projects.

Also, their help doesn’t stop after someone gets into a home. NeighborWorks also provides financial counseling and even house improvement loans. Some of the raised funds will go on to help keep these programs available.

“Families in a home and are stable have their children more emotionally balanced and do better in school. They’re more successful and they find jobs easier,” Dahlquist said.

A good portion of the funds will go into the nonprofit’s Spirit of Hope House. It’s a transition house for men leaving the correctional system. Dahlquist said “the stabilization that brings to the community can’t be understated whatsoever.”

The second highest eastern Idaho earner was the Idaho Falls Rescue Mission, earning $23,123.70.

This year more than 1,400 donations were made to organizations, totaling up to $172,469. The remaining $150,000 was provided through grant prizes and matching funds.

Here’s a complete list of the eastern Idaho nonprofits that participated and the amount of money they’ll receive:

Aid For Friends, Inc. / $3,300.77 Bannock Youth Foundation / $35.96 Family Services Alliance of SE Idaho / $2,754.18 NeighborWorks Pocatello / $32,795.85 CLUB, Inc. / $675.37 Idaho Falls Rescue Mission / $23,123.70 Lemhi County Crisis Intervention / $1,193.88

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