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Union Gospel Mission to unveil new shelter facility

Union Gospel Mission of Tarrant County will dedicate its new $8.2 million Scott Walker Women and Families Service Building on Sept. 21.

The 39,707-square-foot facility, located at 1321 E. Lancaster Ave. in Fort Worth, not only provides a refuge for single women, mothers with children and two-parent families, but also is the county’s only shelter serving single fathers with children.

The new building includes 28 double-occupancy rooms for single women, five rooms for men with children, five rooms for two-parent families, a 12-bed overnight emergency shelter for single women, laundry rooms, program and activity rooms, a library, the Suzie Murray Chapel, a pantry and walk-in freezers and a large courtyard for residents.

It also houses The Mavs Foundation Computer Lab and Learning Center, which has 20 computers and a laser printer.

The building was constructed by Muckleroy and Falls, with architecture by Schwarz-Hanson Architects and landscaping by Folkes-Norman.

In 2015, Union Gospel Mission provided 93,574 nights of shelter to residents and homeless people, served 219,119 meals and provided services to 3,851 homeless women, men and families.



Starting this school year, students at eight Dallas-Fort Worth high schools can enroll in Youth Entrepreneurs, a business and entrepreneurial education program for at-risk students.

Youth Entrepreneurs, a national nonprofit organization, helps students develop their own business idea from concept to the marketplace. Students in the year-long elective program work with teachers and community business advisers to create business plans and market their products to classmates. Participants learn money management and business skills.

“By equipping high school students with business smarts, Youth Entrepreneurs prepares youth for success following high school, whether that be in school or in the workforce,” said Grant Mankin, the program’s Dallas-Fort Worth area director.

Locally, YE will be offered at Bill R. Johnson CTE Center in Crowley, The Class in the Parks in Arlington, Fort Worth Trimble Technical High School, Dallas Skyline High School and Responsive Ed Premier Lewisville, Irving South, Fort Worth and Granbury.

Youth Entrepreneurs is launching 38 programs elsewhere this fall, including 17 high schools in the Phoenix area; nine in Kansas and Missouri; one in Louisville, Kentucky; two in Detroit; and one in Enid, Oklahoma.

Youth Entrepreneurs serves 3,000 students annually, operates in six states and has nearly 15,000 alumni.



North Texas Giving Day is back for its eighth year on Sept. 22, and its founder, Communities Foundation of Texas, is hoping to top last year’s record-setting $33.1 million in donations to benefit North Texas nonprofits.

North Texas Giving Day, the largest Giving Day in the nation, is an online donation event for North Texas charities. The effort lets nonprofits gain exposure to – and start relationships with – new donors while spreading awareness of their causes. Last year, more than 450 Tarrant County-based nonprofits benefited from the event.

The Fort Worth Donation Station event will be at Sundance Square, 420 Main St., from 4-7:30 p.m., with remarks from Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price and performances by local performing arts groups. At the event, the North Texas Community Foundation will award cash prizes totaling $10,000. For details visit

The Arlington Donation Station and Arlington Gives! Concert featuring The Voice’s Luke Wade will take place at Levitt Pavilion, 100 W. Abram St., from 6:30-9:30 p.m. The free community event will include $30,000 in prizes from the Arlington Tomorrow Foundation to Arlington-based charities, food trucks and other activities. An additional $10,000 People’s Choice Award will go to a nonprofit from the Gene and Jerry Jones Family Arlington Youth Foundation. The program also will include grant presentations to the River Legacy Foundation and the Arlington Public Library Foundation. For details, visit

Donations for this year’s event can be made from 6 a.m. to midnight Sept. 22 to nonprofits listed on Donations of $25 and above will be boosted by $2 million in bonus funds and prizes.

Since 2009, North Texas Giving Day has pumped more than $119 million into the local community.



A recent study presented at Sister Cities International’s annual conference in Washington, D.C., estimates that the impact of international exchanges related to Sister Cities International on the U.S. economy is $525 million – with Fort Worth Sister Cities making a $14 million impact in 2016, mostly from travel and tourism.

Fort Worth, Nashville, Tennessee, and Atlanta, Georgia, were chosen to participate in the pilot study by ValueIdeas. The study observed the impact of travel and tourism, foreign investments from sister cities, spending by students and adults coming for exchange programs, impact of volunteers and in-kind donations.

Fort Worth has eight sister-city relationships around the world that provide educational, cultural and commercial exchanges. Fort Worth and Reggio Emilia, Italy, have partnered for more than 30 years and are researching possible entrepreneurial exchanges next year.



The United Way Women’s Fund of the Women’s Leadership Council of United Way of Tarrant County recently awarded $22,875 to Camp Fire First Texas for scholarships for coursework and licenses for the Child Development Associate Credential, $8,922 to The Women’s Center of Tarrant County for career development scholarships and $5,000 to the Young Women’s Leadership Academy for a gap scholarship.

United Way of Tarrant County also gave $332,782 to nonprofits serving military service members who are returning to civilian life in the Tarrant area.

2-1-1 Texas at United Way received $50,800 to continue providing callers with access to a military specialist who will follow up on calls from military families/veterans. CLC Inc. was awarded $87,906 to provide training and employment services to veterans and their families. The Center for Transforming Lives received $20,576 for financial education and coaching. Tarrant County Veterans Treatment Court was given $60,000 for an alternative program for veterans returning from combat who face prosecution for non-violent offenses. In mental health services, Marriage Management received $38,500 to provide marriage education classes using a curriculum called Active Military Life and Resiliency Skills. And Recovery Resource Council was allocated $75,000 for its Enduring Families counseling and advocacy program for veterans.

United Way also added two new partner agencies – The Gatehouse in Grapevine and Fort Worth-based Family Pathfinders of Tarrant County Inc. Both nonprofits will be part of the annual United Way campaign.

The Gatehouse provides support to women and children in domestic abuse recovery. As a United Way partner it will use donations for its Independent Life Program. Family Pathfinders will use funds to provide mentoring services for families struggling to overcome poverty, homelessness and reentry after incarceration.



Sid Richardson Foundation added $250,000 to Project Lead The Way, an initiative of the Fort Worth Independent School District to provide science, technology, engineering and math curriculum to students in kindergarten through high school.

Lockheed Martin committed $1 million in a matching grant to support the effort. FWISD has committed federal grant funds to also support program implementation, including technology enhancements and other needed resources not met with private funds.

Diamond Hill-Jarvis High School, Meacham Middle School and Diamond Hill, M.H. Moore, Helbing and Cesar Chavez elementary schools were the first K-12 schools implementing the initiative in the school district.

Project Lead The Way is a nonprofit organization that provides learning experiences for K-12 students and teachers across the nation.



Texas college basketball coaches will join Holly Rowe, ESPN reporter and cancer survivor, for the American Cancer Society’s inaugural Texas Tip-off on Sept. 29 at 6:30 p.m. at The House of Blues, 2200 N. Lamar St. in Dallas.

Coaches vs. Cancer Texas Tip-off will let guests meet coaches from major Texas universities and hear their predictions for the coming season. Coaches expected to attend include: Scott Drew, Baylor University; Kelvin Sampson, University of Houston; Jamie Dixon, Texas Christian University; Tim Jankovich, Southern Methodist University; Shaka Smart, University of Texas; Chris Beard, Texas Tech University; Billy Kennedy, Texas A&M University; and Tony Benford, University of North Texas.

Tickets cost $150. To purchase, visit or call 214-819-1200.


Mayfest Inc. awarded grants totaling $205,000 from proceeds of 2016 Mayfest to three of its founding organizations. The Junior League of Fort Worth Inc. received $72,000 to sponsor the Kids in the Kitchen and Pancake Breakfast programs. The Fort Worth Parks and Recreation Department received a $60,500 grant to build construct two permanent port-a-let enclosures in Trinity Park. Streams & Valleys Inc. was awarded $72,500 to create a master plan for landscaping, signage, safety and parking elements of the Phyllis J. Tilley Memorial Pedestrian Bridge. … The Haltom City Parks and Recreation Department raised more than $30,000 and handed out 1,000 backpacks purchased by the Haltom City Police Department to local elementary students at the seventh annual Back to School Health Fair at Haltom High School. … The Arlington Independent School District was awarded nearly $30,000 from the Gene and Jerry Jones Family Arlington Youth Foundation to support a character training initiative for 375 AISD secondary coaches with Joe Ehrmann, former NFL Colts player and co-founder of the InSideOut Initiative. The initiative is working with the NFL Foundation and Dallas Cowboys on a statewide character education pilot program endorsed by the University Interscholastic League and the Texas High School Coaches Association. Two NFL markets – Texas and Colorado – are piloting the effort with the intention to grow the program nationally. … Tarrant County College won a $10,200 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to host NEA Big Read in Tarrant County. Managed by Arts Midwest, Big Read introduces people to great works of literature and encourages them to read for pleasure and enrichment. The NEA Big Read Grant at TCC will focus on Tim O’Brien’s book The Things They Carried. Community-wide events will take place from Oct. 22-Nov. 22 at all five TCC campus libraries and participating locations. … Imagination Fort Worth received a $15,000 grant from the Amon Carter Foundation to fund the Storybook PAL program, an arts-integrated educational program for bilingual pre-kindergarten and kindergarten students.

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