Arlington-Based Charities Collect More Than $1.3 Million During North Texas Giving Day

Residents donated a record-setting $1.34 million to Arlington-based nonprofits Thursday during the 9th annual North Texas Giving Day event.

More than 5,645 donors made a financial gift to Arlington charities during the 18-hour annual fundraising event, which is coordinated by the Communities Foundation of Texas. That exceeds last year’s giving totals, where Arlington-based nonprofits collected just over $1 million. In all, more than $39 million was raised for nonprofits across North Texas, according to the foundation.

The Green Oaks School was among many nonprofits vying for residents’ support. Students and staff dressed as characters from the Wizard of Oz and posted Facebook videos encouraging donations to support the school’s long-term goals of expanding services to meet the needs of children and adults with intellectual disabilities. By the end of the night, Green Oaks School had raised more than $45,000 thanks to North Texas Giving Day.

“It’s huge,” said Executive Director Jean Jewell, who dressed as the Wizard. “It helps us get our annual fund kicked off and it gives us the opportunity to reach out to the community in a fun way.”

The Arlington Tomorrow Foundation, celebrating its 10th anniversary, also worked to help donors’ contributions go further. During its fourth annual Arlington Gives! event, the charitable endowment hosted a free concert for the community and awarded $50,000 in bonus grants to six local charities.

Click here for a list of grant recipients.

Thousands of residents gathered downtown at the Levitt Pavilion to show their support for Arlington nonprofits and enjoy the free Josh Weathers Band concert. One of those was Arlington resident Janae Price, who brought her three daughters Nylah, Jaylah and Raegan out to enjoy an evening of live music and show support for the kids’ schools, Arlington Classics Academy and Grace Preparatory Academy.

Support from residents such as Price are critical during North Texas Giving Day, which can account for up to 50 percent of the school’s donated revenue for the year, said Executive Director Craig Sims. The donations help with projects such as the school’s STEM labs and outdoor learning center. “It enriches students’ overall educations,” he said.

As part of Arlington Gives, dozens of nonprofits set up informational booths along Abram Street in front of City Hall to let concert goers know more about their work in the community.

River Legacy Living Science Center offered residents a chance to visit with Mr. Six, a three-toed box turtle, and learn about year-round nature and educational programming and the center’s ongoing $2.5 million Exhibit Hall renovation.

“We’re the best kept secret in Arlington,” spokeswoman Kristi Payne said.

At its booth, Water from the Rock talked with residents about its numerous programs, which range from high school equivalency classes to providing appropriate clothing for job interviews.

“We’re about the whole person. Not only education but putting them in a place where they can be successful. We help them dress for success,” said volunteer Gale Davis.

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