Cunningham Township Supervisor's Office
Who we are
Since 1928, the Cunningham Township Supervisor’s Office (CTSO) has been funded by Urbana residents to serve low-income Urbana residents. We cultivate strong, trusted partnerships with other local governments, agencies, and funders to meet the basic needs of our participants. As a small office headed by elected Supervisor, Danielle Chynoweth, we are able move nimbly to provide a non-duplicated safety net for Urbana households dealing with the devastations of homelessness, joblessness, or disability.
CTSO operates six programs:
- Homeless Assistance
Homeless Assistance supports low income Urbana residents who are in the life-threatening circumstance of living without shelter. This program fills the gap when emergency and transitional shelters either do not exist or cannot accommodate a resident. It also prevents homelessness by keeping residents with sufficient income from being evicted. Township can provide a household making at or below 125% of the poverty level up to 30 days of shelter or up to $900 in payment to a landlord for permanent housing. This is a one-time assistance available to a household once in a 2-year period.
- Between November 17, 2017 and January 31, 2018, the program has supported 33 households or 53 individuals, including 24 children. 20 residents were kept in their homes with rent assistance and 33 residents received emergency shelter in a motel. Total cost has been $8,600 or an average of $162 per person.
- General Assistance
General Assistance serves people living in Urbana who are part of very low income households and have exhausted all other means of support. General Assistance is a monthly grant payable to applicants making less than $675 per month. The maximum amount is $265 per month which is sent to their verified Urbana address. Those who receive the grant must provide community service and/or pursue education and employment as directed by the office unless exempt due to a disability or medical issue.
- Between May 15, 2017 and January 31, 2018, General Assistance participants have risen from 26 to 67. In the past this number has ranged between 100-200.
- Transportation Assistance
Any Urbana resident who receives Homeless or Transportation Assistance is eligible for a free annual bus pass.
Any participant who needs additional services, such as disability, mental health, substance abuse, health care navigation, child care, education or other, is referred to the appropriate agency and follow up is provided to ensure they receive the support needed. In doing so, we can identify gaps and systems issues and work with funding and agency partners to resolve these.
- Grants to Social Service Agencies
Non-profit organizations seeking funds to operate social service programs benefiting Urbana residents are welcome to apply to the Consolidated Social Service Funding Pool funded by Cunningham Township and the City of Urbana. Funds may be used for both services to clients and program operating costs. Workshops about the program are typically held in March of each year with applications due in April, decisions in June and funding starting in September. Funding typically ranges from $1000-$30,000 per year with average grants of $6,000.
- In FY2018, 26 agencies were funded, 21 of them by Cunningham Township. Urbana provided $75,000 and Township $175,000 for a total of $250,000.
- Public Education
CTSO seeks to address the roots of poverty– lack of employment, unequal distribution of wealth and income, and discrimination—through program development, policy change, and public education. We produce white papers and educate local leaders on the local conditions of poverty, discrimination, state of social services, and gaps in the safety net, advocating for systems change as needed.
In addition, our elected Supervisor Danielle Chynoweth, serves on the Champaign Urbana Public Health Board, by statute, and Housing Authority of Champaign County, by appointment.
Applications can be dropped into the front door slot anytime, turned in during office hours: Mon-Fri 8:30am-12:00pm and 1:00pm-4:30pm, mailed to 205 W. Green St., Urbana, IL 61801, or emailed at email@example.com. Within 2 weeks of the date an application is received, an intake appointment is set. We make decisions on applications within 30 days of the date we receive them. Missing documents or information may cause a denial or need to re-apply. Applicants have the right to appeal decisions by the Supervisor and be given a fair hearing by the Champaign County Public Aid Committee.