The purpose of Serve Southern Dallas, sponsored by The State Fair of Texas, is to highlight nonprofits who support the most vulnerable families, individuals, and businesses in Southern Dallas, who have been hard hit by the current crisis.
As a neighbor in the South Dallas/Fair Park community, The State Fair of Texas is committed to supporting nonprofit organizations that are providing services in this area. We understand that these organizations depend on year-round generosity from citizens, volunteers, corporations, and other nonprofit organizations.
Our focus here is to celebrate and bring attention to those organizations that are typically not on the radar because of their size. These organizations may allocate most, if not all of available resources directly to their mission, rather than marketing and fundraising due to the limitations of funding and staff. While deserving of attention and support, the organizations shared here may be less visible to potential supporters. It is our desire to serve as a connector and a catalyst to these amazing organizations that make a difference daily in our community.
The Community Affairs team at the State Fair of Texas is currently working to connect resources to nonprofits in the Southern Dallas area which includes in-kind donations, funding, and skilled volunteers to opportunities such as marketing, strategic planning, and other areas that impact the operations of these agencies.
“COVID-19 has revealed long-standing privilege, disparities, and inequities that exist, leaving our most vulnerable neighbors exposed to a harmful threat. As the data continues to come out from black and brown communities showing increased mortality rates from COVID-19, Froswa’ urges us to ensure nonprofits already on the ground, with the historical and cultural knowledge, receive the resources they need to serve.” (recent interview with Dr. Booker-Drew, Roselle Tenorio, Dallas Doing Good)
Each organization has unique needs and capacity to work with volunteers and to receive donations.
Here’s what we recommend:
1 – Identify an organization with which you would like to volunteer or to whom you’d like to donate.
2 – Connect with that organization via their website or social media (you’ll find that some organizations have a website, while others prefer to engage in outreach via Facebook).
3 – Make a difference! These organizations are closely connected with the most vulnerable communities in Dallas – they are working hard and your support is a big help.
The list initially began with nonprofits that the State Fair of Texas has either funded or worked with through our programs or in the community but as the content of the website began to develop, we’ve added additional nonprofits to the site. Please note that although several (not all) have been vetted, please conduct due diligence and research organizations on Charity Navigator and GuideStar to ensure their legitimacy.
Please reach out to us – we’ll do our best to connect you with the organization you wish to help.
While we attempt to offer updated information about the local nonprofits serving their communities, this list is not comprehensive of all nonprofit organizations, and may not include up to date information.
Please contact us with any suggestions or requests.
The State Fair of Texas Community Affairs office led by Froswa’ Booker-Drew, PhD, Vice President, Community Affairs & Strategic Alliances.
Thanks to Kennedy Bower, Foundation Coordinator, The Real Estate Council and Keith Thode, AdvanceNet Labs for their advising and support.
At the start of the quarantine, actor John Krasinski filmed and produced a YouTube show, Some Good News, capturing the spirit of ‘we’re in this together’ – clips of Oprah joining Zoom graduations, huge thank-you moments to healthcare workers, epic home adventures with kids and dads.
Now we find ourselves in the middle – the muddy, murky middle. The “new normal” feels almost normal. We are all desperately seeking the exit, an end to our exhaustion – and the end feels further away than ever.
In Spring, we poured out funding –
To families who had to choose between food and electricity,
To people who worked in hospitality and lost all their income at once,
For kids trying to complete school without internet (read D Magazine detailing how between 25-40% of families in Southern Dallas communities do not have internet and are facing remote school again in the Fall).
Dr. Froswa’ Booker-Drew, Vice President, Community Affairs & Strategic Alliances for The State Fair of Texas, teamed up with Julie Morris, a marketing professional with Persona Media Company to offer ServeSouthernDallas.org. The goal was to serve those who were serving. Like Fred Rogers said, “find the helpers.“ Find those who selflessly serve in their communities, already doing the work, and running short of resources.
When there’s no clear end in sight, it’s understandable that energy and support wanes. But now the helpers are needed more than ever.
Look for the leaders who know where to put resources to work. Funding isn’t all that’s needed. You’re needed. A few hours a week, giving what you’ve already got in your hands. It may be giving haircuts, business advising, or making extra lunches. And if you can’t figure out what to contribute, ask those serving what they need.