2023 Grant Ballot

It’s time for your voice to be heard!

As a member of the Women’s Fund of Smith County, your vote is critical to our mission – to enrich the lives of women and children in Smith County.

Below, you will see information on requests from 11 Smith County nonprofit organizations. These requests have been thoroughly vetted by our Grants Committee and have been found to satisfy our eligibility requirements.

Please take a minute to read the descriptions and watch the brief videos provided by the agencies to help you better understand their projects.

If you would like to review the entire grant application, we have copies available at the Women’s Fund office. Just let us know if you’d like to come by and review the packets.

When you’re ready to vote, simply click the link to the online ballot. You will move the projects up and down in your order of preference, and then click to submit your vote.

Children’s Advocacy Center – Meeting Room Furnishings

    This request is for training tables and chairs (not included in our capital furnishing project line) to outfit a variety of additional meeting spaces in our new facility. These furnishings allow us to launch new groups, as well as expand those we currently offer. These include a new Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) investigative/intervention group for those identified as at risk for trafficking; therapy support groups for parents, boys and girls; Trauma Informed Schools summer programs for educators; and MDT case coordination.

      East Texas Food Bank – Tyler Resource Center

        The East Texas Food Bank (ETFB) requests funding in support of the Tyler Resource Center, a new multi-service food pantry that will be located at our distribution center in Tyler, in an area of high need, where we will serve an estimated 500 Smith County households each week. The largest portion of this grant will be used to purchase food items, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy proteins, dairy and pantry staples, and remainder will help cover the Pantry Supervisor salary.

          East Texas Symphony Orchestra – All Access to the Power of Music

            ETSO will empower 3,500+ Smith County students, including every 4th & 5th grader in Tyler Independent School District, by providing (National and Texas) standards-based instrumental music education. ETSO hopes to remove barriers so all students can experience and participate with the Link Up curriculum created by Carnegie Hall culminating with an interactive ETSO performance. The curriculum is proven to develop creative capacities, cognitive skills and make personal connections to music.

              East Texas Veteran’s Community Council – CampV Our Place Patio

                The patio project will provide social, educational, and support gatherings to better identify, assess the needs of and serve the rapidly growing number of women veterans and families in East Texas. ETVCC will use funds to transform the space behind the Women Veterans Service Center into an attractive and functional gathering place. Planned renovations include construction of a large patio with comfortable seating, and outdoor kitchen, and a children’s play area.

                  The Fostering Collective – Family Resource Center Makeover

                    The project mobilizes The Fostering Collective to expand tangible and therapeutic support service for foster/adoptive families by developing a Sensory Room, Resource Room, and an upgraded Collective Closet with the essentials families need to care for foster children. The Project allows for a full-time staff member, the Resource Center Coordinator, to provide support and referral services for foster and adoptive families as well as therapy scholarships for foster families in crisis.

                    Habitat for Humanity of Smith County –
                    New Office Necessities for Critical Repairs Department

                      We will begin construction on an additional office building in the Fall to house our entire ReHabitat department, as we have run out of room in our current office. We are requesting funds to provide the furniture and technological needs of our teams’ new offices, including a network server, 4 workstations with furniture, copier/printer, and phone system. We have four staff members in this department, and our team receives over 200 calls a month, plus emails and walk-ins requesting information.

                      People Attempting to Help (PATH) – Community Playground Project

                        PATH Community Homes owns 52 properties that are the foundation for our Transitional Housing Program. Several of the properties surround an open space owned by PATH that was developed into a playground for the neighborhood approximately 15 years ago. PATH is seeking funding to purchase new equipment and refresh the existing property in order to provide a warm, inviting, safe place for all families in the surrounding neighborhood to use and enjoy. This is phase 1 of a multiphase project.

                        St Paul Children’s Services – Dental Clinic Expansion

                          The dental clinic at St Paul Children’s Services is in need of expansion to add one exam room designated specifically for babies, expand the waiting room and add three additional operatories. We are currently at mass capacity and booking patients three months out. This expansion allows us to see infants starting at 6 months of age in specialized, infant-friendly chairs as well as meet the increased needs of dental care for children all across East Texas.

                            Smith County Champions for Children – Because Children Matter: Re-branding

                              Brand recognition is vital to long-term sustainability for both businesses and non-profits. Champions for Children requests support from the Women’s Fund to update our brand standards by creating a new logo and marketing design. Champions is celebrating our 25th anniversary this year, and with that milestone, we are evaluating our strategic plan to identify where the board feels the organization needs to go in the next 3-5 years. After building our strategy, we would like to update our branding.

                              Starbrite Therapeutic Equestrian Center – Hire a Full Time Instructor

                                We are in need of another Full-Time (CTRI) Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor to serve our wait list of eligible participants. We have a pool of 7 PATH Certified CTRI candidates waiting to be interviewed. These 7 candidates are located in Texas already, there are another 34 candidates in other states. We would be willing to help with relocation assistance, if needed.

                                  Young Audiences of Northeast Texas – Creating Balance Through Dance Winona ISD

                                    Young Audiences’ Creating Balance through Dance Program has offered daily dance instruction to girls in Winona ISD for the past 4 years, beginning with high school, adding middle school during the second, and next year, the after-school program. This project would expand the dance program in Winona to include a high school dance team and an additional section of instruction at the middle school. Team activates would include game performances, clinics for elementary students and service.