Kaiser Foundation Benefits Region
COMMUNITY SCHOOL: In a 2008 photo, from left are George Kaiser Family Foundation Executive Director Ken Levit, University of Oklahoma President David Boren, George Kaiser, former Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor and OU-Tulsa President Dr. Gerard Clancy. The event was held to announce a $50 million gift from the George Kaiser Family Foundation to OU-Tulsa. The gift was the largest in OU’s history and will be used to construct a Community School of Medicine at OU-Tulsa.
GTR Newspapers photo
George Kaiser Family Foundation () recently announced a series of grants to more than 60 Tulsa area social service agencies. The foundation will distribute more than $5 million to organizations in the Tulsa metropolitan area, with 22 organizations receiving matching grant challenges. More than $1.2 million will go toward substance abuse, mental health and crisis intervention, $1 million will support community health initiatives, $669,000 will support child and family welfare, senior services and youth development and training, and more than $2 million will benefit basic needs and other organizations.
“These are difficult times for many individuals and families in our community as so many struggle with basic needs like food, shelter, health care and other critical services,” said Ken Levit, executive director of George Kaiser Family Foundation. “Charitable organizations in Tulsa work hard every day to help fill the needs of tens of thousands of Oklahomans throughout our city, county and region. The foundation is pleased to present these grants to assist these outstanding organizations serve more individuals and families throughout our community.”
Agencies receiving funding include12&12, Inc., Camp Fire Green Country Council, Inc., Domestic Violence Intervention Services, Inc., Family & Children’s Services, Incarcerated Women’s Project Fund, Iron Gate at Trinity, Inc., Mental Health Association in Tulsa, Morton Comprehensive Health, Neighbor for Neighbor, Inc., Neighbors Along The Line, Rebuilding Together Tulsa, The Parent Child Center of Tulsa, Tulsa CARES and Youth Services of Tulsa ().
worked with community partners and foundation colleagues across Tulsa over a period of several months to identify the most pressing social service needs in the region and to select various agencies effectively positioned to deploy these funds for maximum impact.
The results of that review include grants to the following organizations and many others like them.
Domestic Violence Intervention Services, Inc. works to rebuild lives affected by domestic violence and sexual assault through advocacy, shelter, counseling and education. They will receive a grant of $190,000 to help support comprehensive intervention and prevention services.
“Children and adults in our community suffer from abuse everyday,” said Tracey Lyall, executive director of Domestic Violence Intervention Services, Inc. “We work to assist and protect those affected by domestic and sexual violence.”
The Incarcerated Women’s Project Fund will receive $244,000. The donation will be used to fund licensed therapists to provide gender-specific substance abuse treatment programming at Oklahoma Department of Corrections facilities.
“An estimated 63 percent of incarcerated females have an assessed need for substance abuse treatment when they enter the Oklahoma corrections system,” said Dr. Melanie Spector, health education, research and program development specialist with the Oklahoma Department of Corrections. “This grant will help provide much-needed treatment for female offenders to help prepare and equip them to succeed when they reenter the community.”
Morton Comprehensive Health, a federally qualified community health center providing primary health care access in the Tulsa area will receive a $55,000 grant to support their services.
“These resources are vitally important,” said John Silva, of Morton Comprehensive Health.
The $150,000 grant to Rebuilding Together Tulsa will fund home repairs for 35 homeowners in the Hawthorne (located near 36th and North Peoria) and Kendall-Whittier (located near First and Lewis) neighborhoods. Repairs include new roofs, energy efficiency improvements, paint, wheelchair ramps, secure door locks or other needed repairs.
“Through this additional funding, Rebuilding Together Tulsa can provide safe and secure homes for more of our neighbors in need,” said Jennifer Barcus-Schafer, executive director of Rebuilding Together Tulsa. “With this grant we will be able to continue serving the community through our home repair programs, which will not only improve lives, but also improve Tulsa neighborhoods.”
awarded the Parent Child Center of Tulsa a grant in the amount of $165,000.
“The Parent Child Center of Tulsa focuses on strengthening families to prevent and end child abuse and neglect in the community,” said Desiree Doherty, executive director of The Parent Child Center of Tulsa.
Tulsa CARES will receive $95,000 to continue providing basic needs and social services.
“Tulsa CARES serves low-income individuals living with disease with essential services such as food, shelter, mental health and care coordination,” said Sharon K. Thoele, executive director of Tulsa CARES. “The money received from the George Kaiser Family Foundation will help reduce hunger and homelessness, and help us provide a safe haven for some of Tulsa’s most disenfranchised citizens.”
has also partnered with Youth Services of Tulsa to expand their transitional living program. will receive a grant of $125,000 to help support their programs.
“We offer several youth development programs like transitional living, youth court and art studios,” said James M. Walker, executive director of Youth Services of Tulsa. “These services help keep Tulsa’s youth safe and provide participants with tools they need to lead healthy and productive lives. We are so grateful for this grant and every donation that we receive at this time of year because it means we can help shape the lives of more youth in Tulsa.”