The Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability (TCAD) recently announced $400,000 has been awarded to senior centers across the state. In this year’s state budget, the Tennessee General Assembly allocated $400,000 for senior centers and tasked TCAD with developing a competitive process to distribute the funds.

Rhea Richland Senior Center was one of the seniors centers to receive a $5,000 grant.

“Senior centers in our state help our friends, family, and neighbors remain active and ensure a state of independence for aging Tennesseans,” said James Dunn, TCAD Executive Director. “With the General Assembly’s intent to reach senior centers at each corner of our state, the Commission developed an application process prioritizing distressed and at-risk counties. Many of these senior centers were greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and, as a result, so was the population they serve. These funds are welcome news for our senior centers, and I look forward to the significant impact they will make.”

On Sept. 27, TCAD published its applications process for senior centers. Following the deadline, TCAD received 130 full applications representing 86 of the state’s 95 counties. After utilizing the competitive, objective criteria, 80 senior centers throughout 59 counties were individually awarded $5,000 grants.

According to the senior centers’ applications, the grant funds will pay for operating, administrative, and preventive maintenance costs in order to continue serving older adults in Tennessee. The funds will also provide many senior centers the ability to accomplish capital projects for the upkeep and operations of their facilities and equipment.