AT&T Commits $1 Million to Prosperous South Dallas, Last Mile Announces North Texas Education Fund, and $300,000 Awarded to Five Dallas Nonprofits » Dallas Innovates

From nonprofit funding to project grants to community service work, social impact initiatives abound in North Texas.

We’ve seen a number of companies, startups, and organizations take action over the past year to prepare for a post-pandemic future, drive equity and inclusion, boost the ecosystem of growing local startups, and more. Here’s a roundup of locals making a difference right now with charitable donations, grants, volunteer efforts or positive disruptions.

Do you know a force for good? Let us know.

AT&T commits $1 million to Southern Dallas Thrives for student laptops and resources

[Image: Southern Dallas Thrives]

The digital divide has just narrowed a bit, thanks to AT&T. Hundreds of South Dallas students picked up free laptops this week as part of AT&T’s $1 million commitment to United Way. South Dallas Prospers countryside.

Over the next two years, AT&T’s donation will provide a total of 2,000 refurbished laptops to K-12 students in the community, along with digital literacy training and technical support. The laptops and services will also be offered to young adults and families in conjunction with local South Dallas nonprofits and schools.

This new effort is part of the AT&T Connected Learning initiative, which aims to connect underserved children across the country to learning.

“Our work with AT&T will strengthen our efforts through the Southern Dallas Thrives initiative to advance economic opportunities for students and ensure they can compete and be successful in securing the living wage jobs of the future,” said Jennifer Sampson, McDermott-Templeton president and general manager of United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, in a statement.

Last Mile Announces North Texas Education Fund for Biotech and STEM Students, Supported by Lyda Hill Philanthropies

The Last Mile Education Fund announced the North Texas Biotech Workforce Fund, a $100,000 regional fund to support financially challenged students pursuing studies in biotechnology and related STEM in 26 North Texas counties.

With initial support from a grant from Lyda Hill Philanthropies, this first-of-its-kind fund will increase access to biotechnology careers for low-income North Texas students, allowing them to join the growing workforce in biotechnology in the region.

The Last Mile Fund invests in obtaining degrees for ambitious, low-income students in high-demand STEM disciplines. The organization identifies students close to the finish line in their chosen field and provides just-in-time support for financial challenges beyond their control.

“With the growing ecosystem of the life sciences community in North Texas, including the recently announced Biotech + Hub at Pegasus Park, a 23-acre office park developed to support local biotech innovation, our region needs more STEM and biotechnology graduates to enter careers in the life sciences,” said Tom Luce, CEO of Biotech Initiatives at Lyda Hill Philanthropies, in a statement.

Students in need can apply for funds here.

Women of WPI from the Dallas Foundation donates $300,000 to five Dallas-area nonprofits

Image: Yurchello108/iStockPhoto

At the Dallas Foundation’s Mary M. Jalonick Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI), recognizing life-changing and life-affirming organizations is paramount.

That’s still the case in 2022. The 10-year-old organization announced its recent award of more than $300,000 to five Dallas-area nonprofits. This figure is six times higher than any previous year and brings WPI’s total donations to more than $830,000.

Jubilee Park and Community Center, located in southeast Dallas, received the highest grant of $150,000. Another $40,000 was allocated to each of the following: ACT for justice, daughters embracing mothers (GEMS), Hope Supply Co., and Metrocare Services.

“The women of WPI are honored to impact so many North Texans at these five nonprofit organizations that inspire and cultivate change for Dallas,” WPI founding member Sarah Losinger said in a statement. “We know each of these organizations will translate their rewards into additional, much-needed resources for Dallas communities.” Read more in our story here.


Fabio Luisi conducts the Dallas Symphony Orchestra on April 19, 2019. [Photo by Sylvia Elzafon, courtesy of Dallas Symphony Orchestra]

” The National Foundation for the Arts awarded a total of $450,000 to four Dallas performing arts groups. the Dallas Symphony Orchestra and Bishop Arts Theater Center each received $150,000. the Dallas Black Dance Theater received $100,000 and Cara Mia Theater $50,000.

” The Bum Bright Family donated $7.5 million for the expansion of Plano Children’s Medical Center. It is largest philanthropic gift in the history of the hospital and one of the largest donations made in Collin County. The facility’s new emergency department will bear the Bright family name.

Photo: smrm1977/iStock

Miranda Lambert and she Train tour are in partnership with Dallas Animals Alive! at promote the placement of pets in need. Lambert will be joined by little big city and The Cadillac Three when they occur at Fair Park Dos Equis Pavilion May 7.

⟫ A new program aims to house half of the homeless in dallas and collin counties using COVID-19 relief funds. The purpose of the Dallas Real Time Rapid Rehousing Initiative is to place 2,762 homeless individuals and families in permanent housing by September 2023.

” The Oak Cliff Vegetable Project has joined the 4DWN project to open a community cold store in the middle of the 4DWN skate park in South Dallas. “It’s going to increase our capacity tenfold, I’m not kidding,” Tumminia told NBC DFW. “And we can also run many different programs from this cold storage unit.”

My Possibilities launched a new, more dynamic online learning program called MPower Online Learning in April 2020. They plan to increase enrollment to 100 by the end of 2022. [Image: Courtesy My Possibilities]

⟫ Just before the pandemic, Plano’s My possibilities Provided for inaugurate building two of his Upper campus Learning to help 1,000 adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities each month. But construction delays and price increases during the pandemic drove up costs by $2 million. Now, the organization’s $25 million fundraising campaign is relaunched in order to fill the construction cost gap. There is no doubt that the forces of good in North Texas will step in to carry out this project of hope, help and learning.

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    North Texas has a lot to see, hear and watch. Here are our editors’ picks.

  • Browse our curated selection of competitions, nominations, presentations and grants. Our roundup of programs is aimed at entrepreneurs, businesses, creatives, inventors, educators and social innovators.

  • Two non-profit organizations will each receive $250,000 in grants. The Capital One grants are part of a $3.5 million commitment to 12 nonprofit organizations.

  • The Dallas Education Foundation is credited with spearheading the creation of an “educational metaverse” for DISD. It is currently being piloted at Dallas Hybrid Prep, the district’s first permanent hybrid school. The STOP Awards, funded by Philadelphia benefactor Janine Yass, will provide a total of $3.5 million in prizes for outstanding educational responses during the COVID pandemic.

  • “Together, we can create the workforce of tomorrow, a workforce that will attract and grow businesses, build equity, and support our city’s exceptional economic growth for years to come,” said Mayor Eric Johnson when releasing the report.

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