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Nonprofit Matters: North Texas Giving Day aims to break record


More than 1,000 North Texas nonprofit organizations will participate in the fifth annual North Texas Giving Day Sept. 19 with hopes of exceeding last year’s record-breaking 37,800 donations totaling $14.4 million. Thousands of causes – including animals, art, education, children, families, health care and the environment – serving 16 North Texas counties will benefit from the online event and are eligible for matching funds and prizes of more than $1.5 million. Donations can be made from 7 a.m. until midnight on Sept. 19 at “Donation stations” events throughout the day include the Fort Worth Center for Nonprofit Management at La Mancha Business Center, 2701 W. Berry St., from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Launched in 2009 by Communities Foundation of Texas with ongoing support from the Center for Nonprofit Management and The Dallas Foundation, DonorBridge is the most comprehensive and free public resource for connecting North Texas nonprofits and supporters. DonorBridge provides donors with information about nonprofits in order to align their charitable interests with community needs.

Mayfest distributes $205,000 in grants Fort Worth nonprofit Mayfest Inc. awarded grants totaling $205,000 from proceeds from its 2013 festival in Trinity Park. Mayfest Inc. presents Mayfest, a four-day family festival, annually. All profits – more than $6.5 million to date – are distributed to its founding organizations, which support the greater Fort Worth area through the beautification and recreational development of the Trinity River and local parks as well as various community programs. This year’s grants include $38,500 to the Junior League of Fort Worth to sponsor the Kids in the Kitchen program benefiting more than 1,000 students. The in-school curriculum will allow students to earn fitness equipment for their participation. The City of Fort Worth Parks and Community Services Department received $55,000 to buy and install additional LED lights in Trinity Park and more solar-powered self-compacting trash containers. Streams & Valleys Inc. received $50,000 for a new Trinity Trails Etiquette and Safety Public Awareness Campaign. Campaign elements will include signage at trailheads, advertising, social media efforts, radio spots and outreach to local cycling groups and other trail user groups. Each of the above organizations also received $20,500 for its general operating fund from Mayfest Inc. totaling $61,500.

Local Can Academies receive $1.4 million Texans Can Academies, which gives young Texans a second chance at life through education, received a Texas 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant for a five-year program that will serve students and parents at its six Fort Worth and Dallas campuses. The grant amount for the first year is $1.4 million. About 800 students and 100 parents will benefit from the programs, which are scheduled to begin this fall semester. The grant is a supplementary program that provides resources for after-school programs or for programs when school is not in session. Programs include tutoring, academic enrichment, drug and violence prevention, counseling, art, music and recreation. Families of students also will be offered educational development courses and literacy programs.

Lena Pope bags Container Store gift The Container Store will donate $19,000 to the Lena Pope Home as a result of its grand opening weekend Aug. 10-11 in Fort Worth. The retailer celebrated the relocation and opening of its store off Interstate 30 at Hulen Street. The Container Store donated a percentage of its weekend sales to the Lena Pope Home to further its mission of aiding children and families through counseling and educational services. CIS adds eight schools Significant funding increases from the Texas Education Agency, school districts, United Way and community donors are making it possible for Communities In Schools of Greater Tarrant County to answer a 23 percent increase in demand for its programs at the start of the 2013-2014 school year. Eight new schools and two new school districts – Lake Worth and White Settlement – will have on-campus CIS social workers to assist at-risk youth. Communities In Schools of Tarrant County is part of a national network of CIS programs serving more than 1.2 million students. CIS is placed in 47 schools across 10 Tarrant County school districts this year, serving students who are identified by their schools as most at risk of dropping out.

Clayton YES! adds three campuses Clayton Youth Enrichment Services has contracted to provide after-school enrichment programs for first through fourth graders at East Fort Worth Montessori School and for fifth and sixth graders at Bear Creek Intermediate School and Chisholm Trail Intermediate School in the Keller Independent School District. The addition of the three schools brings the agency’s total on-site programs in Tarrant County to 80. The nonprofit Clayton YES! has been providing before- and after-school programs in Tarrant County since 1975. Grants available for arts programs Arts Council Northeast, in partnership with the Texas Commission on the Arts, is offering grants for arts-related programs to schools, school districts, nonprofit organizations, cities and individuals in the 16 cities it serves. Online grant applications are available at The submission deadline is Dec. 2, with grants to be awarded in the first quarter of 2014. Any questions regarding Arts Council Northeast’s grant application should be directed to Bobbie McFarland at 817-283-3406.  

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Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

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