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Keeping Texas Schools Above Water

Keeping Texas Schools Above Water

After the storm, generosity gives Texas schools a lifeline

In August 2017, over 6 million Texans were impacted by Hurricane Harvey’s devastation. Repairing the damage done to the Gulf Coast region will require years of support. In addition to damaging infrastructure for power, transit and communications, Hurricane Harvey is estimated to have impacted over 1.4 million public school students, including 42,000 K–12 students who have been displaced across district lines.

In response, Educate Texas and Communities Foundation of Texas, along with their funding partners, quickly launched two new funds to support Gulf Coast schools and students affected by Hurricane Harvey.

One of these funds is the Harvey KIDS Education Fund at CFT, which, in addition to providing immediate relief funding to school districts and campuses to support the needs of displaced students, also provides longer-term funds to enable rebuilding and redesigning schools and the student learning experience.

To date, the Harvey KIDS Fund at CFT has raised over $1.6 million. These funds are being used to provide immediate relief as well as to support longer-term rebuilding efforts.


Harvey KIDS Funds in Action

Featured below are selected stories about how some districts are using Harvey KIDS funds:
In Pearland ISD, 414 students were forced to move into shelters outside of their regular school zones. Harvey KIDS funds are being used to provide these students with transportation to and from school, which has resulted in a daily attendance rate of more than 98 percent. Despite the devastating effects of Hurricane Harvey, students are learning, and the schools are maintaining normalcy as best they can.

In Pasadena ISD, more than half of the students and staff were impacted by the hurricane and found themselves living in hotels, or with friends and relatives. Currently, over 3,300 students and their families remain displaced in temporary living situations. Harvey KIDS funds will help the district hire homeless case managers to communicate with these families to assess their social, emotional and academic needs and direct them to appropriate resources. The grant will also enable the district to hire tutors to provide additional academic support.

East Chambers ISD was hit with 60 inches of water during Hurricane Harvey and many families who faced substantial losses due to the flood 
are still struggling with home repairs. Harvey KIDS funds are helping East Chambers ISD support an after-school program to help students with their homework and studies by providing access to teachers, computers, textbooks and other resources, as well as transportation back home.

In Vidor ISD the potential relocation of up to 50 teachers and maintenance and transportation personnel has been a big concern since the hurricane. In order to help keep vital human capital in the district that serves nearly 4,000 students, Harvey KIDS funds are being used to offer two daily meals to staff as well as to replace lost technology.

Taft ISD faced extensive damage and classes for the district’s more than 1,000 students were delayed an entire month. To support students and teachers who must now catch up in their coursework, Harvey KIDS funds are being used to hire education consultants who will assist with curriculum and plan development to adjust for lost instructional time.

In Port Aransas ISD, Harvey KIDS funds are being used to offer licensed professional counseling services to 425 students, many of whom experienced much loss due to Hurricane Harvey. They are also using funds for medium-term student assessment and interventions.

In Aransas County ISD, the impact of Hurricane Harvey included collapsed buildings and caved-in roofs, resulting in three weeks of instruction time lost. As a result, the district and its students struggled with a lack of adequate classroom space and equipment. Harvey KIDS funds are being used by the district to replace lost technology and provide necessary items for special-needs students.

To learn more about the Harvey KIDS Fund or Communities Foundation of Texas’ and Educate Texas’ Hurricane Harvey relief efforts, please visit www.edtx.org/harvey.

Keeping Texas Schools Above Water

Keeping Texas Schools Above Water

After the storm, generosity gives Texas schools a lifeline


In August 2017, over 6 million Texans were impacted by Hurricane Harvey’s devastation. Repairing the damage done to the Gulf Coast region will require years of support.

Smart Justice

Smart Justice

Caruth funds Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute to route mentally ill to care instead of jail


Of Texas inmates, 34 percent have a mental health need, and most have substance use disorders. The state of Texas spends hundreds of millions of dollars annually to provide mental health services to these individuals. Dallas is piloting a better way.

Building  Economic  Security for  Working Families

Building Economic Security for Working Families

CFT seeds nonprofit network to help low-income families


For two years, Communities Foundation of Texas has been working with 10 nonprofits across North Texas who are part of CFT’s Working Families Success Network (WFSN).

Racial Equity Grants

Racial Equity Grants

CFT awards $150,000 in grants to support racial equity work in Dallas


On Jan. 17, 2018, the National Day of Racial Healing, Communities Foundation of Texas announced that a total of $150,000 was distributed across 35 nonprofits to help them facilitate storytelling or implement practical solutions to race-related challenges in Dallas.

Data-Driven Decision-Making Institute Builds Strength

Data-Driven Decision-Making Institute Builds Strength

CFT's D3 Institute was a data bootcamp for agencies


The picture of Dallas that emerged from a study released in 2012 debunked the prevailing thought that the city and the surrounding North Texas region were filled with people earning comfortable incomes....

Support Network

Support Network

Employment Success through Metrocrest Services and Working Family Success Model


Eric MacFarlane was a successful electrician. But his career came to a halt when a serious car wreck left him injured and out of a job. He turned to Metrocrest Services, whose mission is to help people in crisis get back on their feet and sustain their independence.

Kids on the Land

Kids on the Land

Angie Dickson Returns to Her Roots


Angie Dickson spent her childhood on her family’s ranch in West Texas. As an adult, she built a successful career in finance, but she felt a strong calling to give back.

Gifted Musicians

Gifted Musicians

Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation Fund


In corporate philanthropy, Neiman Marcus has an ear for youth arts education. Research has shown that students receiving arts training graduate at higher rates, score higher on the SAT, are better creative problem solvers and become engaged civic leaders.

Play it Forward

Play it Forward

W. W. Caruth, Jr. Fund and many others at CFT supports public parks


In the 1960s, CFT leaders like Charles Sharp understood that public spaces help make cities great. That philosophy continues today at CFT. A recent grant of $5 million was made for safety and security at Klyde Warren Park, the deck park built in downtown Dallas.

The Science of Giving

The Science of Giving

The Caruth Scholars continue Will Caruth's passion for medical and scientific research


In 1997, a grant from the W.W. Caruth, Jr. Foundation created The Caruth Scholars in Medical Research at UT Southwestern: a program that enables 20 of the world's brightest young medical scientists to work in the most promising areas of research.

 Wisdom of Pearl

Wisdom of Pearl

S.M. Wright Foundation receives funding from the Pearl Anderson Fund at CFT


Pearl Anderson made one of the first donations to CFT in 1955 when it was the Dallas Community Chest Trust Fund. Today, her legacy lives on as we continue to support children in need through grants to organizations like the S.M. Wright Foundation from her fund.

Disabilities Won't Slow Her Down

Disabilities Won't Slow Her Down

Emily Shryock Expresses Gratitude for Kristofer Robinson Scholarship


The Kristofer Robinson Scholarship supports quadriplegic and paraplegic individuals in the state of Texas, and was established by Kristofer Robinson who was injured and later died as a result of a car accident on I-635 in 2000. Read scholarship recipient Emily Shryock’s remarkable story of how she took her disability and turned it into opportunity.

Nestor Colemenero Thanks CFT for Scholarship

Nestor Colemenero Thanks CFT for Scholarship

Anson L. Clark Scholarship at CFT propels Nestor closer to his dreams


First in his family to graduate from a major university A scholarship from us made his dreams of going to college come true. A scholarship from us made his dreams of going to college come true.

Communities Foundation Grants Address Problems in North Texas

Communities Foundation Grants Address Problems in North Texas


At-risk middle school youth and increasing the economic security of working families are our focus. Read how we are making a difference in these areas.

Rockwall Grad First Recipient of James 5:1 Scholarship

Rockwall Grad First Recipient of James 5:1 Scholarship

Anonymous CFT donor awards $40,000 scholarship for Rockwall students to attend University of Texas at Austin


After losing his father, Ryan realizes that he could overcome obstacles. He becomes the first Rockwall High School recipient of the largest scholarship at CFT.