Scott County Community Foundation (?SCCF?) is the recipient of a $50,000 community leadership grant from Lilly Endowment Inc., announced Executive Director Jaime Toppe. The Endowment?s goal is to help community foundations explore how they can effectively play a leadership role in their local communities. The planning grant amount is based on county population.

SCCF is contracting with the Applied Research and Education Center at Indiana University Southeast (?AREC?) to conduct a community needs assessment. The goal is to identify and prioritize Scott County?s needs and assets in several areas, including economic development, the aging population, education, income and poverty, substance abuse, health, mental health, infrastructure, recreation, and housing. The resulting study will provide a roadmap for community development in Scott County.

A task force has convened for this ?Looking Forward Scott County? initiative. AREC, with direction from the task force, plans to conduct listening sessions, focus groups, and surveys to get feedback from Scott County residents. The survey will be distributed in the fall.

?We are very excited to take the lead in conducting a community needs assessment,? said Toppe. ?To the best of our knowledge, a comprehensive community needs assessment has not been done in 15 to 20 years. We want everyone?s voices to be heard throughout this process. Our task force members believe this assessment will assist us to not only seek grants in the future, but also help with the overall economic development of our community.?

For more information on Scott County Community Foundation, you may call 812-752-2057, email or stop in the office at 60 N. Main St., Scottsburg. You may also visit