In starting her talk, Baucom said she was pleased "to be among people who work so hard for our county."
She explained that when the Golden Leaf Foundation first came to Anson County about a year ago, they announced that they had $2 million set aside for Tier 1, or economically distressed, counties "and it was our turn."
Over the course of the past year, more than 100 people attended the meetings. A total of 27 proposals were prepared, with 10 finalists picked. Of those 10, just seven were approved for funding totaling $1.7 million.
Those projects included: $501,788 for Anson County Schools' "College and Career Ready Graduates" program.
Baucom explained that the SPCC funding was desperately needed. "We have a problem recruiting and retaining business in this county because our work force is not ready," she said.
She gave the example of one company that needed to hire 100 people in Anson County. "They received 200 applications but could only hire a fraction of that because [the applicants] couldn't pass the drug test or were not qualified."
This program will help better train potential members of the county's work force, she said.
The Hands of Hope program is also needed in the county, Baucom said. "In Anson County, 23.1 percent of the population lives below the poverty level," she said. "The North Carolina level is something like 14 percent."
The Circles program has an 80-percent success rate in bringing people out of poverty, she added, and ties in to helping children better attain appropriate education.
"A lot of good things are gonna be happening," Baucom said of the Golden Leaf funding.