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Hartford Family Services Agency Mi Casa Managing To Survive

JEFFREY B. COHEN

August 20, 2009

HARTFORD - Three weeks ago, things looked bleak for Mi Casa Family Service and Educational Center, the city organization that provides youth and family services primarily to Latino families.

According to the city, the organization recently had enough money left for only three weeks of payroll, faced a possible $800,000 annual operating deficit and was working hard to get money from the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.

On Wednesday, board Chairman Jose Martinez said Mi Casa is scraping by and dipping into its rainy day fund, but is not at risk of closing.

"Pretty much like every other nonprofit and most corporations, we are suffering during these economic times," Martinez said. "We've had reduced funding from the city and from the state as well as all of our other foundations. Although they've committed to give us funding, they're holding on as long as possible.

"I strongly believe we're going to make it through this," Martinez said.

Efforts to reach Jorge Rivera, the organization's executive director, were unsuccessful.

Sarah Barr, spokeswoman for Mayor Eddie A. Perez, said Wednesday: "Obviously, the city is interested in the vitality and well-being of Mi Casa and we want to see the core services continue for the residents of Hartford."

Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant. To view other stories on this topic, search the Hartford Courant Archives at http://www.courant.com/archives.
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