Baylor Philanthropy Initiative

Each semester, the Baylor Philanthropy Initiative provides an opportunity for students to steward and grant thousands of dollars in a unique and transformational learning environment. In partnership with dozens of social sector partners, students enrolled in our philanthropy courses cultivate a philanthropic spirit through hands-on experience, developing as innovative leaders poised for a lifetime of generosity.

Here are the grants they have made since 2014:

Fall 2014

Waco Habitat for Humanity
Amount: $20,500
Purpose: Climate control for the Habitat ReStore
Reason: Waco Habitat is able to fund most of its operations through profits generated by the ReStore, which enables its financial donors to give directly and fully to construction programs.  However, during the winter and summer months, temperatures in the ReStore reach up to 120 degrees or below freezing, resulting in losses of up to 25% in sales.  Based on evidence from other ReStores nationwide, Waco Habitat is confident that this infrastructure project will increase sales, sustainably directing more money to home construction.

Family Health Center
Amount: $15,500
Purpose: Prenatal dental care for women over age 21
Reason: In Texas, women over age 21 do not have access to dental care through Medicaid.  Research has shown close association between a mother’s oral health and such things as premature birth, low birth weight, and children’s future oral health.  This grant to FHC will provide a full range of dental treatments to approximately 125 women in McLennan County. 

Shepherd’s Heart
Amount $2,500
Purpose: Completion of Phase One of the Aquaponics project
Reason: The goal of Shepherd’s Heart’s Aquaponics project is to provide a sustainable source of fresh, whole foods to Wacoans who live in food deserts.  Aquaponics is a proven form of food production that marries aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponics (soil-less growing of plants) into one integrated, low-cost, and fully-sustainable system.  This grant will enable Shepherd’s Heart to complete the first phase of their aquaponics infrastructure on the campus of TSTC and will help get the project up and running.

Communities in Schools for the Heart of Texas
Amount: $16,700
Purpose: Funding a Mentor Coordinator position and some program costs
Reason: CIS-HOT aims to foster meaningful partnerships between schools and communities in the greater Waco area, building its foundation on the belief that every child needs a one-on-one relationship with a caring adult.  At present, only a fraction of students who qualify for CIS-HOT programs can participate, and many are on a waiting list due to insufficient resources.  This new part-time position, funded by Baylor’s grant, will quickly begin to address this gap by providing resources to place waiting students with able mentors.

Talitha Koum Institute
Amount: $7,000
Purpose: Implementation of Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT) project
Reason: Since its inception, Talitha Koum has been on the cutting edge of utilizing research-based therapeutic intervention with Waco children in deep poverty.  Although their current methods have proven successful, they are now seeking an opportunity to supplement their intervention with the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics.  This funding will be directed toward training Dr. Keith Warren on the highly innovative NMT methods so that this treatment can be implemented with children enrolled at Talitha Koum. 

Animal Birth Control Clinic
Amount: $17,300
Purpose: Large dog spay/neuter project
Reason: The City of Waco euthanizes 1,776 dogs on average each year and spends approximately $110 on each euthanized dog, totaling $195,360 annually.  Additionally, large breed dogs pose health and environmental threats when the population is not properly controlled.  This grant will fund more than 300 spay/neuters, preventing more than 1,500 new puppies from being born and saving the City of Waco thousands of dollars as our community moves toward “no-kill” status.  In addition to savings for the city, this spay/neuter project will enhance the quality of life in our community by ensuring fewer stray animals on the streets.

Compassion Ministries
Amount: $18,500
Purpose: Funding toward a Resource Specialist position
Reason: Compassion Ministries serves approximately 160 clients each year who are either homeless or on the verge of homelessness, helping to reintegrate these individuals into permanent housing and employment.  A new Resource Specialist will help facilitate this process by networking with housing providers and potential employers and will develop relationships to encourage trust and confidence in the residents who are seeking to re-establish housing and financial security.

Act Locally Waco
Amount: $2,000
Purpose: Branding development and web design consultation
Reason: Act Locally Waco builds crucial channels of communication to facilitate community participation and collaboration in Waco.  Because ALW has encountered so much growth and success during its short existence, exceeding 1,500 subscribers and 2,500 Facebook followers, the channels of communication that it provides to the community are no longer free.  This grant is directed toward a website and newsletter redesign that can attract sponsorships, thereby developing sustainable revenue for reinvestment in Act Locally Waco’s operations. 


Spring 2015

Talitha Koum Institute
Amount: $4,925
Purpose: Site-use study
Reason: Talitha Koum Institute is interested in utilizing an acre of unused land in an effort to engage volunteers and create a revenue stream for the organization.  They have previously been advised that small-scale herb farming could be most profitable, so with this grant, they will hire experts for a feasibility study to determine how much this enterprise would cost and how profitable it might prove over the long term.

World Hunger Relief, Inc.
Amount: $10,000
Purpose: Create a commercial kitchen
Reason: WHRI will use this grant to do a full kitchen renovation and create a registered commercial kitchen.  This will enable the organization to prepare products that can be sold commercially, thereby diversifying and increasing revenues for the organization that will enable it to more fully carry out its existing programs.  Additionally, WHRI plans to use the kitchen for educational purposes and will increase their capacity for cooperation with other area nonprofit organizations.

Road to Damascus
Amount: $13,905
Purpose: Purchase of a mobile food truck
Reason: Road to Damascus will use this money for the purchase of a mobile food truck that will allow 500-800 more children to be fed nutritious meals over the summer in McLennan County.  Our dollars are matched by a grant from Coastal Child Nutrition Services, enabling the full purchase of a brand new truck that, we hope, will remain in operation for many years.

Care Net
Amount: $8,550
Purpose: Construction of outdoor play area
Reason: Care Net will use $8,550 to build an outdoor play area at their new facility, which will provide space for the more than 1,300 children who visit the facility annually.  The grant will include the following: a base for trails and playscape, a cedar playset, a basketball court and goal, and a pair of swing sets.

Prosper Waco
Amount: $4,500
Purpose: Financial security initiative TBD
Reason: This grant will go to fund a collaborative initiative related to financial security, once priorities have been identified through the collective impact goal-setting process.

Amount: $5,550
Purpose: Home visit program support
Reason: This grant will go to fund 75 home visits as part of Avance’s integral Home Visitation program, enabling Avance to provide a vital social support network for participants.

Creative Waco
Amount: $2,070
Purpose: Arts initiatives and cultural strategy
Reason: This grant will contribute to Creative Waco’s work in funding arts initiatives and implementing a cultural strategy for Waco.

Waco Civic Theater
Amount: $5,500
Purpose: Production of one show
Reason: This grant will go to fund the cost of production for The Great Gatsby next April.  This grant will allow Waco Civic Theatre to retain the profit from the production and invest it into future productions and, hopefully, an eventual move to downtown Waco. This grant is doubly impactful because it will also allow another local nonprofit organization to sell tickets to Gatsby’s final dress rehearsal and apply the funds toward its operations—perhaps as much as $10,000.

Senior Fellows Grants

Caritas of Waco: $5,000 for its case management program, which offers clients an opportunity to more fully address difficulties and problems in their lives—problems that often prevent people from becoming more independent.  Ultimately, the hope is for such families to have declining need for emergency services and greater self-reliance.

The Advocacy Center for Crime Victims and Children: $4,000 for ongoing operations in the organization’s victims center, children’s advocacy center, and prevention and education programs.

Casa Bernabe’: $2,550 to support the operations of Casa Bernabe’, an orphanage that offers abandoned, destitute, and orphaned children a loving and safe home and helps children, families and communities overcome deep poverty in Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua, and surrounding areas.

UnBound: $2,300 to operations in the fight against human trafficking in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, which is a source, transit, and destination center for human trafficking.  

Give Directly: $1,150 for an unconditional $1,000 cash transfer to a pre-screened family living in destitute poverty in Kenya.  Evidence indicates that unconditional cash transfers significantly help people in the most dire circumstances to overcome the most direct obstacles to their flourishing.


Fall 2015

Prosper Waco/Act Locally Waco ($10,400): 
Prosper Waco will acquire Act Locally Waco over the next year, and this money will pay a person to do the part-time work of Act Locally Waco during a one-year transition period, to ensure a successful merger.

Creative Waco ($5,000): 
This money will go toward the production of the video being produced as the centerpiece of Waco’s Cultural District application.

Talitha Koum Institute ($4,415): 
This grant is for the early stages of a new social venture that will develop for TKI a new and reliable source of revenue.  Last semester’s students funded a feasibility study, which revealed that TKI can generate tremendous revenue by farming and selling mushrooms.  This grant will fund an apprenticeship for a TKI staff member to learn from a successful mushroom operation in South Carolina.

Family Abuse Center ($10,000): 
This grant will purchase two new water heaters for FAC’s facility.  Their current heaters are on their last legs, and new water heaters will save the organization as much as $90,000 over the life of the new heaters.

The Cove ($12,520): 
The Cove is a brand-new facility for displaced and homeless teens in Waco ISD, and these are start-up funds to get The Cove operational this spring (to cover rent and minor capital costs for the new facility).  Interestingly, Baylor’s BEST program developed The Cove’s business plan last spring, and now our philanthropy students are providing some substantial startup funds to get them operational.

Care Net ($3,000): 
This grant will furnish Care Net with a new mobile sensory lab for small children who will stay at Care Net’s new facilities.

Community Cancer Association ($5,000): 
These funds will go directly to patient assistance for local cancer patients in need of such things as medication, wigs, and transportation assistance for out of town cancer treatments.


Spring 2016

Texas Hunger Initiative ($5,500):

In Waco (and in many other places), a persistent gap remains between children who qualify for free breakfast and those who choose to eat the nutritious breakfasts schools provide.  Additionally, there is significant evidence linking breakfast with improved school performance.  In an attempt to close the breakfast gap by making breakfast more convenient and less stigmatized, Texas Hunger Initiative will use this $5,500 grant in a partnership with Waco ISD and Share Our Strength to purchase two portable breakfast carts, which will be strategically placed for use at Waco High School.

Restoration Haven, Inc. ($10,000):

This grant is a joint venture between Baylor philanthropy students and a council of Aramark employees, who pooled funds to help purchase two lightly used passenger vans for Restoration Haven, Inc. (RHI), a community support organization based in the Estella Maxey public housing complex in East Waco.  Part of Restoration Haven’s mission is to help children see a world beyond their neighborhood, but reliance on volunteer drivers limits RHI’s capacity, exposes the organization to liabilities, and sometimes results in missed opportunities.  This grant is supplemented by grant support from Christian Mission Concern, empowering Restoration Haven to purchase two passenger vans, which will in turn save RHI significant money each year and enable countless new opportunities for the children RHI serves.

Nurse-Family Partnership at Baylor Scott & White ($8,160):

Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP), a nationwide initiative that is new to Waco, is a rigorously tested community healthcare program with astounding, multi-generational outcomes.  NFP empowers low-income, first-time mothers to become confident parents and strong women by partnering these women with nurse home visits early in the pregnancy through the child’s second birthday, providing support, resource connections, education and counseling on health, behavioral and self-sufficiency issues.  Proven benefits include improved prenatal health, fewer subsequent pregnancies, increased maternal employment, improved child school readiness, reduced criminal involvement, and less child abuse, neglect and injuries.  This $8,160 grant will go toward operational support for this compelling initiative in its early stages of development in Waco.

Communities in Schools of the Heart of Texas ($5,000):

Communities in Schools (CIS) is the nation’s largest dropout prevention organizations, and CIS-HOT is a local affiliate that serves students in 30 schools in 12 local districts.  CIS-HOT champions the connection of community resources with schools to help young people succeed.  CIS-HOT has acquired the rights to Learning Profiler, a successful software program designed by a reputable nonprofit organization that has recently dissolved, and has plans to make the Learning Profiler available for purchase by school districts looking for additional tools to improve student learning.  The $5,000 grant will be used to pay a local software company to rebrand and enhance the software and make it available on the web, eventually resulting in a sustainable revenue source for CIS-HOT to maintain and enhance its work in local schools. 

Family Abuse Center ($4,500):

Family Abuse Center (FAC) exists to eliminate domestic violence in Central Texas by sheltering victims of domestic violence and by preventing abuse from occurring through intervention and education.  Fulfilling this mission requires significant resources, and FAC is always in search of the most cost-effective ways to handle its operational costs so that it can maximize its impact on the victims and communities it serves.  This $4,500 grant will be used in one of a two of ways.  One option is to help FAC “go paperless” and install tamp-proof LED light fixtures, which will save FAC more than $3,600 in operational costs each year for the foreseeable future.  The other option is to purchase a new commercial convection oven, which will dramatically reduce time and electricity costs (both from running time and subsequent A/C costs when the current oven heats the building) associated with providing meals for the victims and families who take refuge at FAC’s facility.  

Waco Community Development Corporation ($5,000)

Waco Community Development Corporation (Waco CDC) is an organization committed to inspiring and cultivating healthy neighborhoods in Waco—places that are safe, clean, and diverse, where it makes economic sense for people to invest and where neighbors manage change successfully.  One of Waco CDC’s many programs to help realize this vision is its Bounce Roofing program, which provides external home repairs for qualified individuals, with priority given to disabled, elderly, and low-income homeowners in its target neighborhoods based on the belief that small investments in capital improvements can yield significant savings for homeowners and keep these valued neighborhood residents in their homes.  This $5,000 grant will cover the cost of two roof replacements.

Court Appointed Special Advocates of McLennan and Hill Counties ($2,340):

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) recruits, trains, and empowers community members to advocate for abused and neglected children in foster care throughout McLennan and Hill Counties, serving hundreds of children who, as a result of CASA’s efforts, are statistically shown to shorten their time spent in foster care and become less likely to re-enter the child welfare system once their cases are closed.  This grant will go to meet an important, and very practical, capital need for CASA.  Currently, CASA does not have a server that is compatible with its needs, costing the organization lost time, operational dollars, and everyday hassle, such as the inability to send emails to Advocates or securely save vital information while staff are away from the office.  This $2,340 grant will fund a new server, which will be installed at no cost to CASA by volunteers from D1 Design Group, a local design firm.

Waco Civic Theatre ($7,000):

Waco Civic Theatre (WCT) provides the community with quality live theatre and creates, through the arts, an outlet for community education and participation.  This grant will be an investment in a director of development for WCT.  A development director will specialize in generating new sources of revenue for the theatre, enabling the organization to expand its reach and improve its productions.  Although our students are typically reluctant to give grants toward staff positions on the belief that they are unsustainable, they expressed a high degree of confidence in this investment because of its sustainability: the development director will generate more than enough revenue to continue funding for the position in the future.

Creative Waco ($5,000):

Creative Waco is an organization with a vision to grow and support in Waco a thriving cultural and creative community, something that can be linked in cities to improvements in areas such as crime rates, homeownership, tourism, and economic growth.  Creative Waco has led community efforts to apply for Cultural District designation by the Texas Commission for the Arts, to develop a cultural plan for Waco, to bring arts professionals together through the Waco Arts Alliance, and to bring new resources and opportunities to Waco’s various arts organizations.  This $5,000 grant will go toward operational costs for Creative Waco, funding initiatives such as training sessions, web design, and dissemination of information that will help position the organization as Waco’s local arts agency.


Fall 2016 

World Hunger Relief, Inc. ($4,000): This grant will go toward a renovation of the Veggie Van, WHRI’s mobile market, which brings fresh produce to food deserts throughout the Waco community.  This renovation will provide the Veggie Van with a cooling system, which reduces waste, along with a walk-through space for customers to shop inside the van.  WHRI hopes these improvements will enable them to serve more customers, more efficiently.

Mission Waco ($6,000): This grant will go toward Mission Waco’s Urban R.E.A.P. (Renewable Energy and Agriculture Project) initiative.  This program is designed to train the public on health education, agriculture, and stewardship of natural resources.  Mission Waco will build a greenhouse and aquaponics system next to the Jubilee Market, its nonprofit grocery store, that will educate food insecure residents while also providing a local source of fresh produce.

Texas Hunger Initiative ($10,000): This grant will fund a graduate researcher who will focus on the emerging issue of food insecurity on college campuses.  This research will be included in THI’s guidebook for hunger-free communities, equipping communities with information and strategies to assist an overlooked population of food-insecure residents.

LIT Waco ($2,760): LIT Waco works with students at Waco’s Carver Middle School to improve literacy.  This grant will fund an online curriculum, along with books, to use with students who are at risk of falling behind.

Talitha Koum Institute ($7,240): This grant will fund part of Talitha Koum’s NEWTAC (neurologically effective ways to treat trauma-affected children) program, which places an interventionist at La Vega Primary School to help trauma-affected children develop coping strategies that will help them succeed.

Creative Waco ($5,000): This grant will commission 52 local artists to create a Waco-inspired playing card, which will be part of a deck of cards to generate revenue for Creative Waco’s AMP fund.  The AMP fund will, in turn, support numerous artistic and arts education programs throughout the community. 

Youth Chorus of Central Texas ($2,200): This grant will provide new equipment, along with 3 full scholarships for children participating in the YCCT.

Cultural Arts of Waco ($2,800): This grant is seed funding for ArtPlace, a new arts space on Waco’s Elm Ave.  The space is designed to provide opportunities for arts education and community development in East Waco, while also serving as a safe and creative meeting place for children and adults in the community.  This grant will go toward conceptual design plans for the building.

Family Abuse Center ($2,500): This grant will go to start a new fund at the Family Abuse Center to provide women and families with money needed to pay court fees.  This will allow abused women to seek legal outcomes they need without having to pay.

The Cove ($11,500): This grant will enable The Cove to build a new industrial kitchen. The Cove works with high school students who have become homeless, providing them with a place to belong.  This new kitchen will help The Cove in three important ways: 1) They can rent the kitchen to food vendors during times when children are not present, thereby generating revenue needed to fulfill their mission; 2) The kitchen will streamline the process of providing meals to students; and 3) The kitchen will help students develop marketable training and skills, such as catering and culinary arts, that will serve them well into the future.


Spring 2017

The Advocacy Center: $14,000

This is perhaps my favorite, given both the way the students came together to pool funds and the fact that it went to help victims of sexual assault.  Given all that Baylor has dealt with in this realm, these students saw this as a tremendous opportunity to help, in one small way, alter the narrative.  These dollars will be matched by another funder to purchase two colposcopes—instruments designed to be minimally intrusive and maximally effective in sexual assault examinations.  These colposcopes will increase ease and comfort for survivors, improve judgment for examiners (nurses/physicians), and provide better evidence to law enforcement. 

Take Heart Ministries: $3,850

Take Heart Ministries exists to build dignity, improve health, and restore hope to women who are homeless or in transition by providing feminine hygiene products and related items.  New to Waco, Take Heart has achieved many early successes and has built collaborative partnerships with organizations around town.  To operate effectively at their current scale, they need greater capacity to deliver supplies.  This grant will purchase a trailer for the organization, which will expand the reach of Take Heart’s services and enable many more women to receive help and care, thereby impacting their health accessibility and mental and emotional stability.  

UnBound: $8,300 (plus another $1,000 awarded by BIC students, in partnership with the Philanthropy & Public Service Program)

UnBound, based in Waco, works around the globe to activate local communities to fight human trafficking.  This grant will help them build technological infrastructure in important ways, enabling UnBound to organize workflow and better serve communities.  Specifically, it will purchase some technology items to facilitate trainings, as well as CaseWorthy ($7500) a state of the art case management system that UnBound can use to effectively manage the cases of each victim with whom they work and make sure every victim and survivor accesses the resources for which they are eligible. 

AVANCE: $2,850

AVANCE’s works with parents and children, equipping parents with knowledge that directly impacts children’s development while enabling and encouraging parents to achieve their own educational and professional goals. AVANCE’s Parent-Child Education Program instills a philosophy of nurturing care, wellness, and language development in parents, as they embrace their role as their child’s first teacher and their home as first classroom.  This grant goes to provide direct support to parent-child education programs.

Good Neighbor Settlement House: $7,000

Good Neighbor House is based on the “settlement house” model of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, in which people who wished to serve neighborhoods moved into local buildings that became hubs of social, educational, and spiritual activity. Residents – called “settlers” – of Good Neighbor House open their home as neighbors for the community to use.  This grant will fund the construction of outdoor meeting and performance space, expanding the scope of what Good Neighbor can offer to the community.

R Labs: $8,000

R Labs works to bring hope and social/economic transformation to our community through a program targeted to reach underdeveloped and transitioning adults between the ages of 18-25.  Often forgotten at this critical life juncture, young adults in Waco have the opportunity to learn business and entrepreneurial skills that will enable them to obtain, and perhaps even create, employment opportunities.  R Labs operates in 22 other countries, and Waco is now set to become the first US branch.  This grant provides R Labs with vital startup funds, funding coaches and curriculum for their “Mobile Café” classes.

Caritas: $1,250

Caritas provides urgent support to people in need in our community.  In addition to assistance with basic needs, Caritas also runs a case management program, in which they offer clients an opportunity to more fully address difficulties and problems in their lives—problems that often prevent people from becoming more independent.  Ultimately, the hope is for such families to have declining need for emergency services and greater self-reliance. This grant is going specifically to fund educational support supplies, helping clients as they begin educational programs with basic needs such as scrubs, books, and other supplies.

Compassion Ministries: $4,000

Compassion Ministries seeks to reintegrate homeless individuals and those on the verge of homelessness into permanent housing and employment. To reach that goal, Compassion provides services for residents living onsite in transitional housing facilities.  Compassion’s services include counseling, job training, job search, drug/alcohol treatment, daycare, transportation, and more.  This grant will contribute to Compassion’s endowment, enabling the organization to obtain financial sustainability into the future.

Nurse-Family Partnership: $4,500

Nurse-Family Partnership is a proven community healthcare program that empowers low-income, first-time mothers to become confident parents and strong women by partnering with nurse home visits. This grant will fund a “stroller club” for new mothers, enabling them to develop support systems and healthy habits that they can pass along to their children in critical first years.

Waco Hispanic Museum: $2,500

The Waco Hispanic Museum, which opened in September 2016, exists to preserve Hispanic culture and to promote Hispanic involvement in Waco and Central Texas.  This grant will fund the first stage of restoration for La Pila, “the basin,” a significant site along the banks of the Brazos River that once served as a primary gathering spot for Mexican-American families.  Upon restoration, Waco Hispanic Museum hopes to apply for a state historical marker.

Creative Waco: $5,000

Creative Waco exists to grow and support a thriving cultural and creative community in Waco.  This grant will support the Arts Match Program (AMP), a fund for supporting great ideas for high impact and/or innovative arts projects by providing matching grants that will help grow our community as a vibrant cultural hub.

REACH Therapeutic Riding Center: $1,250

REACH exists to improve the health, increase the confidence, and promote the independence of persons with special needs through the use of horses.  In addition, REACH runs “Horses for Warriors,” a free program for US military veterans injured in the line of duty. It is geared to improve the mind, body, and spirit of disabled vets through the uses of horses and the opportunity to socialize with fellow veterans.  This program is about veterans helping veterans, and the grant, awarded in partnership with Aramark, will provide food for the program, enabling local veterans to gather and socialize over a meal while participating in Horses for Warriors.


Summer 2017 (Ambassadors Conference)

The Cove ($25,000)


Fall 2017 (Global Philanthropy Course taught in Maastricht, The Netherlands)

Karam Foundation: $16,000

The Karam Foundation is an organization that is on the frontlines of helping displaced Syrian refugees around the globe.  These funds will purchase technology for a new community innovation workspace in bordering Turkey, where, as Karam has described, “Syrian refugee youth turn their passions and ideas into realities. It is a place where they can build strong relationships with peers and mentors. It is a place where they can learn competitive skills in science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics that are essential to advancing their educations and futures. Most of all, Karam House is an inspiring, safe, and healing space for Syrian teenagers – who have lost so much through the trauma of displacement and war – to be teenagers.”

Women and Children First: $16,000

Women and Children First is a British NGO that works globally to ensure positive health outcomes for mothers and babies, particularly in places where infant mortality is high and economic resources are sparse.  These funds will support new community health education ventures in several rural communities in southeast Asia.

All Hands and Hearts - Smart Response: $16,000 

All Hands and Hearts - Smart Response is an organization that does disaster recovery work using a unique model called “smart response,” which engages communities and volunteers to rebuild resilience (and infrastructure) and be prepared for a strong future.  This grant has an interesting backstory.  When our students flew to Europe in August, they convened in Houston to make the trip together.  As chance would have it, they reported to Houston the day before Hurricane Harvey hit, and many of them ended up stranded for days.  They were deeply impacted by this experience and wanted to help people who were displaced by this disaster (and others).  

Nurse-Family Partnership at Baylor Scott & White Waco: $2,000

Because our students so dearly love Waco, they wanted to allocate a portion of this money to support women and children near Baylor.  NFP does work, based on a proven model, by matching first-time mothers in a long-term mentoring relationship with a nurse.  The outcomes for this model are astounding, often leading to major changes in life trajectory for children born into economic poverty.  


Spring 2018

Skillpoint Alliance                              7000

Take Heart Ministries                         3000

Pack of Hope                                      5000

Communities in Schools                     15,000

Community Cancer Assn                    1500

Nurse-Family Partnership                  7000

REACH Therapeutic Riding Center   3000


Creative Waco                                    5000

Waco Civic Theater                            5000

American Gateways                           4500

Community Cancer Association         4000


Summer 2018

Skillpoint Alliance, $25,000 (Ambassadors Conference)


Fall 2018

Family Abuse Center ($15,000): Development and sensory toys for the HOPES program (HOPES is a collaborative parent support program), as well as a capital project to replace facility light bulbs with LEDs.

Elijah Rising ($7,000): A septic system for Kendleton Farms, a residential facility for survivors of sex trafficking to receive restorative care.

Jordan Elizabeth Harris Foundation ($8,400): This funds a “Hope Squad” at two different schools.  Hope Squads are a national school-based peer-to-peer suicide prevention program.

Caritas ($6,000): This provides an update for Caritas’s technological infrastructure, including new computers and software.

Talitha Koum Institute ($8,000): New sensory modulation equipment for Sensorimotor Lab, gym, and infant playground

CASA ($10,000): Contribution toward the remodel of a new facility for CASA.  $10,000 will fund one office and enable the organization to accommodate more volunteer advocates.

One Acre Fund ($2,500): $2,500 will fund fertilizer, distribution, and training for 100 family farms looking to become self-sustaining.

SHE is Freedom ($5,600): Startup costs for the organization as they seek to provide a safehouse and comprehensive restoration for survivors of domestic minor sex trafficking.


Spring 2019

Talitha Koum Institute: $12,000

In a context of loving relationship, and using research-based therapeutic intervention, the Talitha Koum Institute (TKI) partners with parents to help children self-regulate so that they can be ready to learn by age five. A grant of $12,000 will be given to TKI by the Baylor Philanthropy Lab. $7,000 of the grant will be used to purchase the Mira Colt from Baylor's Chariot Innovations, and the remaining $5,000 will support the development of a TKI tool-kit.

The Cove: $8,000

The Cove exists to help Waco’s homeless youth thrive academically and personally. This grant will support the hiring of a program director for the Host Home program that exists to provide flexible housing solutions for youth at need.

CASA of McLennan County: $5,125

CASA of McLennan County recruits and trains volunteers to advocate for and come alongside children to represent their best interests while they navigate the child protection system. This grant will go towards increasing the recruitment and training initiatives for new volunteer advocates which then increases the number of kids CASA is able to serve.

Pathways for Little Feet: $5,000

Pathways for Little Feet exists to provide interest-free loans to families seeking to adopt, both domestically and internationally, but may not have the funds to complete the adoption. The grant will support a new program initiated by Pathways that provides grant money to attend post-adoption counseling sessions for families within the Pathways network.

Mission Waco: $3,000 

Mission Waco exists to provide Christian-based, holistic, relationship-based programs that empower the poor and marginalized while also mobilizing the middle-class to become more compassionately involved among the poor. Mission Waco seeks ways to overcome the systemic issues of social injustice. A $3,000 dollar grant will be given to Mission Waco to support their executive staff and program directors in a leadership training program through the year. This program will serve to strengthen and empower the staff of Mission Waco so they can more effectively serve the community of Waco.

Jesus Said Love: $18,136

Jesus Said Love exists to combat human sex trafficking and provide empowerment for women exiting the commercial sex trade industry. This grant provides the means to renovate JSL’s commercial kitchen, which is rented to local businesses in order to create a revenue source to self-fund Jesus Said Love’s programs. The kitchen renovation will also enable the JSL staff to pilot a monthly dinner for women that have previously participated in JSL programming in an effort to improve   support and follow-up protocol after a woman has graduated from JSL classes. 

The Refuge for DMST: $3,139

The Refuge Ranch is a long-term, restoration community which provides holistic care and services to girls aged 12-19 that are survivors of sex trafficking. This grant will support the Outdoor Therapeutic Enrichment Program, a program that will establish on-site trails, workout stations, and a sports court for the delivery of therapy, exercise, recreation, and academic classes.

Nurse-Family Partnership at Baylor Scott & White: $5,600

Nurse-Family Partnership is an evidence-based community health program that empowers low-income, first-time mothers to become confident parents and strong women by partnering them with a nurse home visitor and mentor.  This grant will provide funds for 75 New Mom Success Packages, which focus on sleep safety for infants.


Summer 2019

Talitha Koum Institute, $25,000 (from Ambassadors Conference)


Fall 2019

Christian Women’s Job Corps, $5,000. The organization helps equip women in Waco and surrounding areas with job training and life skills through a six-month mentorship and education program.

Talitha Koum Institute, $20,000. Talitha Koum Institute (TKI) is a mental health therapeutic nurture center focusing on the brain development of extreme children from infancy to age 4. The program also extends to weekly parent education, a mentoring program for TKI school-age children, and community trainings regarding trauma-affected children and their care.

Family Abuse Center, $5,000. The center’s mission is to eliminate domestic violence in Central Texas by sheltering victims of domestic violence and preventing abuse from occurring through intervention and education.

Greater Waco Legal Services, $15,000. The organization provides aid to those who are unable to afford the services of a private attorney. It provides affordable legal services, free monthly legal advice clinics and legal empowerment workshops.

Inspiracion, $15,500. The nonprofit focuses on empowering at-risk Latino families to break the cycle of poverty by fostering parenting knowledge and skills that directly impact child development.

The Cove, $15,000. The Cove is a safe space created for students who are experiencing homelessness.


Spring 2020

Talitha Koum Institute: $5,000, TKI is a therapeutic nursery in Waco that focuses on fighting the cycle of generational poverty by helping the kids in the deepest poverty develop cognitively and emotionally from age six months to kindergarten. Based on the compelling evidence about intervention at this stage of life, TKI helps children cope with the traumas of poverty, self-regulate, and learn.

The Cove: $5,000, The Cove is a teen nurturing center in Waco designed to provide a safe space for students experiencing homelessness to access the resources they need to thrive.  Working in many respects on the opposite end of the education spectrum from TKI, The Cove has seen moving results, including graduation rates that dwarf state and national averages for teens experiencing homelessness. 

Memphis Teacher Residency: $3,300, The mission statement of MTR says it best: As a response to the gospel mandate to love our neighbors as ourselves, MTR partners to provide students in Memphis neighborhoods with the same, or better, quality of education as is available to any student in Memphis by recruiting, training, and supporting effective teachers in a Christian context. 

STARRY Counseling: $13,300, Through a nonprofit model, STARRY offers counseling and family support for vulnerable populations experiencing mental health challenges.  Our students—many of them affected themselves—were deeply attuned to the mental health challenges that are emerging alongside COVID-19.

Family Abuse Center: $8,000, FAC shelters victims of domestic abuse in McLennan County.  Once again, our students were attuned to the difficult home situations of many vulnerable populations during a time when we are forced to stay home.  They believed deeply in supporting women and children especially, and this grant (like all of them) is to be used at the discretion of FAC as new needs emerge during this season of shelter-in-place.

Texas Advocacy Project: $5,300, Similar to the FAC grant, this one is to be used in support of victims of domestic abuse.  The Texas Advocacy Project provides legal support for victims who are otherwise trapped in abuse without financial and legal assistance.  

Women & Children First: $10,100, Women & Children First works with vulnerable populations in the developing world to help women and children thrive.  This grant will go toward work in a community in rural Uganda, where nearly any health or economic hardship leads girls to drop out of school, thus limiting economic prospects for the rest of their lives.  W&CF uses a variety of effective interventions (many endorsed by the WHO) to help stem this.


Office of Engaged Learning

One Bear Place #97344
Draper 244
Waco, TX 76798

(254) 710-3231