Old timers are recalling the past heat waves of the 50’s and 80’s. Yup, it was pretty darn hot back then. But it’s the 21st century and the fact that there are those without air conditioning is an unbelievable nightmare. Just to experience a 45-minute brown out is excruciating.
The reality is that there are many among us that have no type of cooling for their homes. So often they are the ones who need it the most — the low-income, the elderly and shut-ins.
To help these folks in this killer summer, the Meadows Foundation, the Communities Foundation of Texas, the Dallas Foundation and the Harold Simmons Foundation have pooled their resources and purchased air conditioners for installation by the Dallas County Health and Human Services personnel for those “suffering from the extreme heat in our community.”
It all began in 1999 when DCHHS approached The Meadows Foundation for assistance. That first year the Foundation awarded $5,376 for the purchase and installation of 22 A/C’s. Fast forward to 2003 when the Foundation provided $50,000 resulting in 200 air-conditioning units.
“Every summer, people suffer from the extreme Texas heat,” said Meadows Foundation President and CEO Linda Perryman Evans. “We realized that the best way to help the citizens of our community was through a collaborative effort that would bring more resources to focus on heat relief.”
Through her relationships with the area’s finest foundations, she created a partnership to collaborate on this situation. Through this team of foundations, $766,726 has been raised to support the heat-relief effort. That’s 4,273 A/C units!
This month an Emergency Heat Relief Fund has officially been established at The Dallas Foundation starting with a $10,000 seed grant from Meadows.
“Our goal is to have $100,000 per year in the fund to enable DCHHS to purchase and install at least 500 air-conditioning units per year to address needs,” said Dallas Foundation President Mary Jalonick. “We invite individuals, corporations, and foundations to join us in this life-saving effort and encourage everyone to contribute to the fund.”
Tuesday the Dallas County Commissioners Court recognized these outstanding foundations for their working together with the DCHHS. How right that was.
Photo provided by The Meadows Foundation