Bank of America Is Making a $920K Investment in North Texas Nonprofits to Advance Economic Equity

In North Texas, the grants will go to Boys and Girls Clubs of Tarrant, Collin, and Dallas Counties, and Big Thought. The $920,000 is part of a four-year, $1 billion commitment Bank of America is making to foster workforce readiness and development in low-to-moderate-income communities.

Bank of America is furthering its efforts to equip young adults with the skills, resources, and experience needed to succeed in the hiring and recruiting process. One of the areas the North Carolina-headquartered investment bank and financial services holding company remains dedicated to is North Texas—that’s why it’s making a $920,000 investment in the community.

The local commitment is part of a four-year, $1 billion initiative Bank of America started to advance economic, social, and racial equity, per a statement.

To foster workforce development, the $920K for North Texas will mainly go to helping youth in low-to-moderate-income communities. The money was split into grants that went to several nonprofits in the region: Boys & Girls Club, Big Thought, and 24 others.

Of the $920K, $515K went to 24 North Texas profits that will further Bank of America’s goals to advance economic mobility. An award of $305K was divvied up between the Boys & Girls Clubs in Tarrant, Collin, and Dallas counties, and $100K went to Big Thought’s Dallas City of Learning program.

“Bank of America is dedicated to supporting the teammates, clients and communities where we live and work,” Mike Pavell, the Fort Worth market president for Bank of America, said in a statement. “It’s important we support our nonprofit partners who are helping youth across the metroplex overcome and persevere, especially in these trying times.”

According to Pavell, the investment in the Boys & Girls Club and Big Thought will promote social progress and drive improvements in the community.

Big Thought, a Dallas-based educational nonprofit that works to close the opportunity gap for youth in marginalized communities, plans to use its grant to design workforce integration tools that can amplify the Dallas City of Learning program.

Dallas City of Learning is a citywide initiative that, with its more than 700 community partners, provides DISD students access to quality summer learning for low to no cost. The public-private partnership ultimately aims to close the gap between those with access to valuable out-of-school resources and those without.

Last year, Dallas City of Learning offered 2,735 programs, 95 percent of which were free for participants. A total of 68,303 students were served, which accumulated to a total of 2,993,300 cumulative hours of provided programming.

With the help of Bank of America, Big Thought wants to amplify the program’s impact and implement 21st century skill development via microcredentials, per a statement. The nonprofit’s president and CEO, Byron Sanders, said now is the time to build a system that codifies, tracks, and recognizes those skills being developed.

Byron Sanders is the president and CEO of Big Thought. [Photo: Courtesy Bank of America]

“The pandemic exacerbated widespread inequities in the U.S, including impacts felt with the K-12 education system. It is more important now than ever that we acknowledge that youth build critical 21st century skills in their out-of-school programs and activities,” he said. “Support from Bank of America makes that possible.”

For the Boys & Girls Clubs, Bank of America awarded $150K to the Greater Dallas chapter, $100K to Tarrant County, and $55K to Collin County.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas (BGCD) will use its grant to support Collegiate STEPS, a program that provides teens in underserved Dallas areas with college preparation and career guidance activities. BGCD aims to help the teens graduate from high school and enroll in post-secondary education or civil service—and reach their full potential.

“The reason why Boys & Girls Clubs exist is to prepare young people to reach their full potential as productive, caring, and responsible citizens,” Charles English, president and CEO of BGCD, said in a statement. “Thanks to our partnership with Bank of America, our Clubs kids get the opportunities that will afford them a real shot in the workplace.”

Per a statement, 74 percent of members at Boys & Girls Club Tarrant County are first-generation high school graduates and college attendees.

That’s why Boys & Girls Club of Tarrant County will use its Bank of America investment for technology upgrades in its locations and to support programs that advance workforce and community development for kids. The goal is to help students as they navigate the “new normal” of hybrid and virtual learning, while providing mentorship that can help them access higher education. 

“Especially in the midst of uncertainty, our Club kids need access to workforce development resources that position them to enter an increasingly competitive labor market and excel in all future endeavors,” Daphne Barlow Stigliano, CEO and president of Boys & Girls Club of Tarrant County, said in a statement. “Bank of America’s investment in our Club allows us to connect our members to financial literacy programs and real-life work experiences that change the trajectory of their lives and lays the foundation for lasting community advancement.” 

And lastly, in Collin County, the Boys & Girls Club will use the funding for its Academic Success program, which provides sub-programs to local youth that act as a ‘launching pad’ for academic achievement, financial security, and college opportunities. 

Boys & Girls Club of Collin County—the largest child-serving organization in Collin County outside of school districts—will further be able to provide entrepreneurs and role models who can introduce students to projects, job fairs, internships, and more.

“Our nonprofit partners are vital in ensuring the next generation of North Texas leaders are empowered and have education and job opportunities,” Jennifer Chandler, Dallas market president for Bank of America, said in a statement. “These investments in organizations like Boys & Girls Club and Big Thought are important demonstrations of how Bank of America is working to advance a more equitable DFW economy by helping to remove longstanding barriers and create greater access to future economic opportunities.” 

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