Organization fooled about multi-million dollar grant - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Organization fooled about multi-million dollar grant

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The head of a Clarksville not-for-profit believes the organization was defrauded by a grant writer who lied about getting them a grant.

Credo and Yashica Amouzouvik were thrilled to learn their not-for-profit, the Homeffa Foundation, won a multi-million dollar federal grant to help the disadvantaged in Clarksville. Then they learned it wasn't true.

"We found out it wasn't real. It wasn't true. It wasn't even submitted," Credo Amouzouvik said.

The Homeffa Foundation expected to train as many as 600 in a youth jobs program.

"Some of these children had no hope. No hope at all. Then we gave them just a little bit of hope, and now we've taken that hope away," said Yashica Amours.

The foundation hired a woman who said she would write a federal grant application for them. She later said they had been issued a multi-million dollar grant and were authorized to begin hiring staff and setting up an office.

Ronald Gordon, hired as CEO, began getting his staff in place.

"I had already started training people how to be trainers and how to be supervisors."

Channel 4 is not naming the grant writer at this point. No one has been charged.

The grant writer allegedly signed correspondence and sent emails using the names of real U.S. government officials. One official contacted later by the foundation denied sending them e-mails.

"She told me that was fictitious," said Credo Amouzouvik.

Dozens of young people had already applied for the jobs program. It would have provided training for as many as 600 youths from 16 to 25 years old.

"We wanted to see something happen for these youths," said Yashica Amouzouvik. "Now they are calling me asking what happened to their jobs."

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