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From left: Elizabeth and Martin Price; Tanya McDonald, DASN executive director; Sarah Nelson, CFT chief philanthropy officer; and Susan Swan Smith, CFT chief relationship officer, celebrate the grant to DASN.

Thanks to donors like you, more than 50 agencies received a combined $1 million from both Communities Foundation of Texas’ donor-advised funds and the foundation’s discretionary funds. 

The grants were awarded in the pilot year of CFT’s new donor/nonprofit matchmaking initiative that pairs donor interests to community needs. As part of the new initiative, nonprofit organizations in North Texas have the opportunity to submit information about their critical funding needs across eight key areas: animals, arts, education, environment, elderly, health, social services and youth. CFT carefully reviews the nonprofit submissions and presents the strongest funding opportunities through an online and printed Giving Guide to those who hold donor-advised funds at the foundation. 

“Many donors want to be matched with important community needs in their areas of interest,” says Brent Christopher, president and CEO for CFT. 

One example is a donor-advised grant from the Martin and Elizabeth Price Fund to benefit the Dallas AfterSchool Network (DASN), a ground-breaking effort that equips youth program providers across the area with resources to improve the quality of after-school programs. The three-year-old DASN offers professional development for after-school program staff. 

Elizabeth Price said, “CFT knows we are passionate about education. We were excited to see the request from DASN in CFT’s Giving Guide, because it’s a perfect match for our giving goals.” 

Through the matchmaking initiative, CFT also is funding an innovative partnership led by the YMCA to provide swimming lessons to underprivileged children at places most convenient to them, such as DISD school pools or apartment complexes in neighborhoods like Vickery Meadow. 

“We were particularly impressed with the way the YMCA is not only meeting a public safety need by reducing drowning risk, but doing it in a way that’s most convenient for Dallas-area children and their caregivers,” says Sarah Nelson, chief philanthropy officer for CFT. 

Some CFT donors appreciate the matchmaking program for the ability to do deeper research anonymously. During the recent process, CFT hosted conference calls with agencies so that donors could discreetly learn more about requests they were potentially interested in funding.

CFT’s matchmaking program complements the 2009 launch of the searchable public website DonorBridge as an effective way to connect donors and supporters with nonprofit organizations. These dynamic initiatives are examples of how CFT leverages its community knowledge to make it easy for more people to give wisely and to provide critically needed support to the community.
For 2011 matchmaking, nonprofits should submit funding requests to CFT by May 27, 2011. Application procedures are posted at www.cftexas.org.

Matchmaking Requests Funded

American Cancer Society

Amon Carter Museum

Austin Street Centre

AVANCE Dallas

Big Brothers Big Sisters

Bryan’s House

Caring for Children Foundation

Catholic Charities

Child and Family Guidance Center

Children’s Chorus of Greater Dallas

Communities in Schools Dallas

Consumer Credit Counseling Service

The Concilio

Consumer Credit Counseling Service

Dallas AfterSchool Network

Dallas Bar Association

Dallas Challenge

Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center

Dallas Children’s Theater

Dallas Faith Communities Coalition

DFW Hospital Council Research Foundation
Educational First Steps

Essilor Vision Foundation

Ferguson Road Initiative

Fine Arts Chamber Players

Genesis Women’s Shelter

Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas

Goodwill Industries

International Exotic Animal Sanctuary

Jonathan’s Place

KIPP TRUTH Academy

Low Birth Weight Development Center

ManeGait Therapeutic Horsemanship

Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance

Metroplex Animal Coalition

Museum of Nature and Science

National Audubon Society

Plano Family Literacy

Presbyterian Communities and Services 

Promise House

Reading & Radio Resource

Reasoning Mind

Retina Foundation of the Southwest

The Senior Source

Shakespeare Dallas

Society for Companion Animals

Texas Trees Foundation

Texas Woman’s University

TexProtects

Trinity Habitat for Humanity

YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas

The Youth Village Foundation

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