DALLAS (August 6, 2018) – Two local foundations have made major, initial grants in support of After8toEducate’s mission to assist Dallas-area unsheltered students and open a drop-in/residential center. The new gifts from the Hoblitzelle Foundation and the Kozmetsky Family Foundation jump start After8’s drive to raise $500,000 by a November 30, 2018 deadline for a recently-announced, matching fund created by the Rainwater Charitable Foundation.
The Hoblitzelle Foundation awarded After8 the first of a two-installment grant totaling $200,000. This contribution will support renovation of a vacant DISD school building as a 24/7 resource facility for homeless youth.
On the heels of that news, the Kozmetsky Family Foundation made a commitment of $150,000. Those funds will support the staffing salaries of this groundbreaking organization.
Both gifts qualify for the $500,000 Rainwater Matching Fund Drive, which will match dollar-for-dollar up to a half-million maximum, funds raised by After8 between now and November 30, 2018. That means any support for After8 from public or private dollars will have double the impact during this drive.
The investments and Matching Fund Drive are an incredible start for After8toEdcuate, which is a first-of-its-kind, public-private collaborative that will provide residential and social services at one location to unsheltered Dallas ISD high school students and other homeless youth ages 14-21. The organization is managing this collaborative with partners, the Dallas Independent School District, and two prominent local nonprofits, Promise House and CitySquare.
“We are excited, honored and grateful for the support and confidence in our work by the Hoblitzelle and Kozmetsky Family Foundations,” said Hillary Evans, After8toEducate’s executive director. “We applaud and appreciate their investment in Dallas youth. Their commitments will positively impact many students and we’re hopeful more investors will follow their lead.”
As part of the Kozmetsky Family Foundation support, After8 has funding for a new site manager position that will provide on-site management at the new facility opening later this fall. With a looming deadline to raise the funds, After8 began community outreach for the matching fund campaign immediately. The nonprofit is accepting individual donations now on its website, https://after8toeducate.com, and looking to secure additional to assist this vulnerable, student population.
Evans added, “Every contribution, no matter the size, helps this worthy cause, and during this limited, matching grant period, you can effectively have twice the powerful impact.”
With the momentum of these grants, After8toEducate is more than halfway to meeting its match fund goal of $500,000. Community resources will help the organization reach the finish line
Last year, After8toEducate received unanimous support from the DISD school board to repurpose the former Fannie C. Harris Elementary School, an abandoned school building in South Dallas as the center for these services.
This facility, being renovated and opening in phases, will initially provide immediate assistance to homeless youth ages 14-21 through a drop-in center slated to begin operating this fall. Planned services will range from personal development assistance, such as academic tutoring and job training, to offering basic daily life needs, such as a place to shower and eat. In spring 2019, the facility will operate 24/7, opening the shelter component that will provide shelter and social services to Dallas ISD unsheltered high school students. The after-hours aspect is needed since most social service providers close their doors after regular business hours, leaving thousands of youth without a place to go after 8 p.m.
While many people may know of the increasing homeless population of adults in downtown Dallas, few are aware of the alarming and growing number of homeless young people throughout the city. Current estimates are that at least 3,500 students in the DISD system are homeless.
Donations to this matching fund drive can be made directly online at: https://after8toeducate.com.
After8toEducate is the first-of-its-kind, public-private collaborative to support and provide essential services to unsheltered Dallas ISD high school students and other homeless youth ages 14-21. Founded by Texas businessman and philanthropist Jorge Baldor in May 2017, the organization launched in response to the growing number of homeless students in the Dallas Independent School District, currently estimated to be more than 3,500, and alarmingly still increasing. Its mission is to create a comprehensive solution that assists DISD high school students and other homeless youth to develop academically, emotionally, and socially. Formed through the Social Venture Partners Dallas and harnessing the strengths of DISD and nonprofit agencies Promise House and CitySquare, the organization will open and operate an after-hours drop-in center this fall in South Dallas, where homeless youth can find refuge and a place to study, eat, shower, and access other immediate support services. The shelter component will open next providing sleeping rooms and other social services for DISD unsheltered high school youth. For more information or to donate, go to https://after8toeducate.com.