More than a year after "We Are the World" dropped from the charts, USA for Africa is getting around to spending its royalties for the homeless and hungry in the United States.
The pop charity, which has spent most of its $44.5-million largess on African relief projects, has allocated $3.26 million to 81 organizations nationwide to date. Thirty cities, including Los Angeles, will share an additional $300,000 of the "We Are the World" monies this week.
Deputy Mayor Grace Montanez Davis said Tuesday that the city's $10,000 grant will go to a temporary shelter for the homeless.
Besides the Los Angeles city grant, seven Los Angeles-area organizations that specialize in feeding or otherwise aiding the homeless also have shared an additional $150,000 in USA for Africa funds.
This week's grant awards nearly fulfill the organization's pledge to distribute 10% of its $44.5 million to U.S. relief organizations. The foundation made its first allocations for domestic relief projects in January by awarding $500,000 to 10 national organizations, including the U.S. Conference of Mayors ($300,000) and the Physicians' Task Force on Hunger in America ($110,960).
Grants of $10,000 each were awarded last week to four Los Angeles organizations--Jewish Family Service, Second Baptist Church Upper Central Friendship House, Las Familias del Pueblo and People Assisting the Homeless--and St. Joseph's Center, a Venice-based program.
One of the largest local recipients was the Los Angeles Archdiocese of the Catholic Church, which was awarded a $50,000 matching grant. The archdiocese, which has raised $250,000 of its own funds, will use the money to set up a health clinic and a job-development program for Skid Row's homeless men and women.
The foundation's latest domestic grants will complement another USA for Africa project, the upcoming Hands Across America slated for May 25. Organizers hope that Hands Across America will raise as much as $50 million to augment the $3.76 million USA for Africa has spent so far in this country.