Although we may have heard the name, many of us don’t really know just what the Benicia Human Services Board does. An agency of the City of Benicia, the board’s mission is “To advocate for the human services as major elements in Benicia’s community identity.”
The HSB is a nine-member board, plus attendance by the Assistant City Manager and the Finance Director, whose members meet second Mondays at 7:15pm at the city hall commission room. Further defined from the website, the board is “responsible for distributing requests for funding to all interested nonprofit agencies that provide services to Benicia citizens who are in need of assistance. When agencies submit their application for funding, the board reviews the applications and makes recommendations to the Council.”
Some of the grant money comes from the city, and some is through fundraising efforts. For several years, The HSB put on an Oktoberfest event at the Clock Tower, but this year it’s being replaced with Spring Into Action, a direct request to the community for online donations.
Living here, it’s easy to be lulled into thinking Benicia does not have the types of social ills that plague other Bay Area cities. To address that, in March the HSB is getting the word out about what they do and the importance of helping our neighbors. According to board member Frances Harkins, the HSB allocates funding to a cover a wide spectrum of needs. Funding is distributed to seven grantees who serve Benicians across all age groups: Special Friends, the Kyle Hyland Foundation, Families in Transition, Soroptimist of Benicia (through the Family Resource Center), Benicia Community Action Council, Carquinez Village Project and Catholic Charities.
To make a donation, please visit spring-into-action-benicia-00044.causevox.com