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Empowering Foster Youth: Girls Giving Grants Supports Foster Angels of Central Texas with $8,500 Grant


AUSTIN, TEXAS - May 10, 2024 - In a heartwarming display of community spirit, they gathered for their year-end celebration, and a new grant recipient was revealed.


The 59 dedicated Girls Giving Grants (g3) members had cast their final votes, selecting Foster Angels of Central Texas as their 2024 grantee. This year's grant of $8,500 is a testament to g3's ongoing commitment to uplifting and empowering the youth in our community, particularly those navigating the foster care system. Since its inception in 2006, g3 has contributed a remarkable $124,100 through 20 grants to 18 nonprofits, making a tangible difference in the lives of countless youth in Greater Austin.


18 of 59 Girls Giving Grants announce their 2024 award to Foster Angels of Central Texas

Foster Angels of Central Texas, a nonprofit founded in 2010 by Sarah Smith, continues the legacy of her father Ted Oakley, who recognized the urgent needs of children under the care of Child Protective Services nearly two decades ago. With a mission to enhance the lives of children in foster care, Foster Angels ensures that every child's fundamental needs are met while also providing enriching experiences that nurture their growth and well-being. Last year alone, the organization fulfilled an impressive 3,370 needs, spanning from basic necessities to life-enriching opportunities.


At the heart of Foster Angels' endeavors lies a profound dedication to addressing the diverse needs of children in foster care. Their comprehensive approach encompasses three primary focus areas: meeting basic needs; facilitating engaging activities and camps; and providing crucial support for aging-out foster youth. Through these initiatives, Foster Angels strives to alleviate immediate hardships and cultivate a sense of normalcy and empowerment.


One aspect of Foster Angels' work that resonates deeply with g3 member Ivy Sernovitz is the organization's commitment to honoring the individuality and self-expression of teenagers in foster care. Ivy shares, "One thing I really like about Foster Angels of Central Texas is that it gives teenagers the autonomy to pick the clothes they want to wear for themselves. I think clothes and fashion are an essential part of personal expression, so making sure that teens in foster care can express themselves and dress how they want is really important. Being confident in what [they're] wearing can make them confident in other aspects of their life, such as school and making friends."


This sentiment echoes the core values of g3, which seeks to empower young women to become compassionate leaders and advocates for positive change in their local communities. With a diverse membership comprising 59 young women from grades 8 to 12 across 18 public, private, and home-schools, g3 embodies the spirit of collective giving and youth philanthropy.* Over the course of eight months, members undergo a transformative journey of learning and growth, expanding their leadership skills and deepening their understanding of local needs that might be addressed by philanthropy.


Reflecting on her experience as President of g3, Aurna Mukherjee shares, "I've been in g3 for five years now, and the organization has made me more of a natural leader and more aware of the needs in the community. g3 allows me to understand specific organizations' missions, the budgets they operate under, and how youth can make a difference. My hope for g3 is that it continues to attract new members and can, in turn, provide even more funding to different organizations."


The impact of g3 extends far beyond each grant, fostering a culture of empathy, collaboration, and civic engagement among its members. Through their annual contribution of $125, with $100 directly allocated to the grant, g3 members exemplify the transformative power of collective giving. Guided by adult and teen leaders, g3 serves as a beacon of hope and opportunity for young philanthropists, empowering them to effect meaningful change in the world around them.


Girls Giving Grants members celebrate their 2023-2024 year and invite new members to join in 2024-2025!

Enrollment for the 2024-2025 class will open in late summer. Girls Giving Grants invites Central Texas young women in grades 8-12 to join their inspiring journey of giving back and making a difference. For further information on joining Girls Giving Grants, please contact g3@impactaustin.org.


About Girls Giving Grants

Impact Austin’s youth initiative, Girls Giving Grants (g3), creates learning and leadership opportunities for Central Texas girls in grades 8-12. Each participant contributes $100 towards a Central Texas nonprofit working to improve the lives of children; g3 has awarded $124,100 in grants since 2006. Learn more at impactaustin.org/girls-giving-grants. Explore all g3 grantees here.


About Impact Austin

Founded in 2003, Impact Austin is a women’s collective giving organization funding nonprofits in Central Texas that provide services in Bastrop, Hays, Travis and Williamson counties. Impact Austin’s mission is to cultivate the collective wisdom and strength of women to transform themselves and their communities through philanthropy. Over the past 21 years, more than 2,931 local women philanthropists from Impact Austin and g3 have given $8.59 million to nonprofit organizations and collaboratives in Central Texas, including 121 grants serving 96 organizations. For more information, visit www.impactaustin.org.


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Summer McAfee, Girls Giving Grants Co-Chair


*The 2023-2024 class of Girls Giving Grants is comprised of members from these schools:

Anderson High School, Ann Richards School for Young Women, Austin High School, Fusion Academy, the Girls School of Austin, Harmony School of Endeavor, Hill Country Middle School, Hopewell Middle School, Leander High School, Liberal Arts and Science Academy, Lively Middle School, Long-View Micro School, McCallum High School, Rouse High School, Running Brushy Middle School, St. Michael's Catholic Academy, Texas Virtual Academy at Hallsville, and Westlake High School.

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