Kingswood Home for Children has been selected as a finalist for a national funding award.

The Bean Station facility was announced as a finalist for the State Farm Neighborhood Assist Top 200 program. In order to get one of the top awards, Kingswood Home needs online votes from the entire Lakeway Area.

“It’s a huge honor,” said Kingswood Executive Director Gene Whaley. “State Farm Insurance representative Jim Pope told me about this grant opportunity.”

When Whaley submitted a grant proposal for Kingswood Home, he was told the program accepted only 2,000 applicants across the United States. As the process proceeded, Kingswood ended up in the Top 200 finals list.

“A representative from State Farm’s home office showed up here,” Whaley said. “In the eight years the program has been in existence, she said that an organization from East Tennessee has never been in the top 200 for this award. The reason we never applied for this before was that we didn’t want to step on the toes of anyone else who may be applying.

“This is a huge honor for us. We’re super excited,” Whaley said.

Residents ages 18 and over with a valid email address can now vote for Kingswood Home for Children at

Those voting are allowed up to 10 votes per day. Voting will continue until 11:59:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time Aug. 23.

On Sept. 25, the top 40 vote-receiving causes will be announced at and a $25,000 grant will be awarded to each of the affiliated nonprofits.

“There has never been a candidate from East Tennessee even in the Top 200 so we feel very honored. I am encouraging each of you to help us out by voting. We need to finish in the Top 40 in order to receive the $25,000 so vote, vote, vote,” Whaley said.

State Farm Neighborhood Assist is a crowd-sourced philanthropic initiative that empowers communities to identify issues in their neighborhoods. The State Farm Review Committee selected the top 200 finalists from 2,000 submissions.