John L. Santikos. Photo courtesy of the San Antonio Area Foundation.
John L. Santikos (1927-2014) Credit: Courtesy / San Antonio Area Foundation

The San Antonio Area Foundation announced Tuesday that eight nonprofit organizations will receive nearly $9.3 million in total funding for capital projects from the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation, a San Antonio Area Foundation fund.

The Area Foundation created the inaugural capital grants process to honor the late John L. Santikos with naming rights opportunities from nonprofits doing work that aligns with Santikos’ designated areas of interest within an eight-county region.

Clarity Child Guidance Center, CentroMed, Haven for Hope, the City of Hondo Public Library, the San Antonio Food Bank, San Antonio Sports, The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio Foundation, and the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA) each received grants ranging from $500,000 to $2.5 million. See full descriptions and grant amounts below.

“The impact that the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation has on our community is tremendous,” stated Susan Steves Thompson, Area Foundation vice president of grants, programs and services. “Our first capital grants process saw an incredible response from our nonprofit community. We are proud to announce our first eight nonprofits receiving this funding and look forward to the year to come when their projects will truly come to life for our community.”

The Area Foundation received 92 proposals that totaled more than $70 million in grant funding requests for the 2016 process. The eight nonprofit organizations chosen in the competitive grants process work on issues of interest to the Santikos Foundation, such as children’s mental health, education, welfare, family health care, homelessness, and food insecurity.

Funding will be distributed to the nonprofits in increments of one to five years.

To accommodate community needs and offer more funding to eligible nonprofits, the capital and naming rights process is a biannual process that will reopen in 2018.

Criteria for Selection

Grant requests had to demonstrate exceptional potential impact measured by the following criteria: number of people served, type and scope of impact the organization or initiative would foster, and opportunities for scalability.

Projects also needed to present a significant naming rights opportunity for the Santikos Foundation and were limited to renovation, restoration, construction, acquisition, and expansion projects, or programs.

Additional consideration was given to proposals that set out to accomplish more than one objective. The proposal could be a new or unique initiative, and/or introduce national best practices in the San Antonio area. Proposals were also required to align with City, County, or other regional priorities, and/or the Area Foundation’s High School Completion and Successfully Aging and Living in San Antonio (SALSA) strategic initiatives. Finally, successful grantees must seek to match or leverage national funds.

Children’s Hospital of San Antonio Foundation – $2.5 Million

A baby receives treatment at Children's Hospital of San Antonio.
A baby receives treatment at the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio in July, 2015. Credit: Scott Ball / San Antonio Report

Funding will help The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio advance its comprehensive pediatric medical program by providing funds to expand and enhance trauma services. CHRISTUS Santa Rosa has a long history of caring for the children of San Antonio and South Texas.

“This leadership gift from the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation will help … as our overall population in the city continues to grow (and) the number of children seeking medical care rises. … This generous gift will help us provide care for the most fragile in our community – our children,” stated Ray Carvajal, board chairman for The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio Foundation. “We are grateful to the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation and the commitment they’ve made to our community and look forward to honoring his legacy at The Children’s Hospital.”

UT Health Science Center at San Antonio – $2.3 Million

The UT Health Science Center at San Antonio received a $2.3 million gift from the Santikos Foundation for specialized high-powered radiological equipment. This equipment will substantially enhance the center’s ability to accurately diagnose and care for seniors in our community who suffer from age-related neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia in the new John L. Santikos CT and Nuclear Medicine Suite.

“More than 55,000 patients and families in South Texas are living with this irreversible condition, and the Santikos Nuclear Medicine Suite will be a critically important part of the new comprehensive Biggs Institute for Alzheimer and Neurodegenerative Diseases at the UT Health Science Center,” stated William Henrich, president of UT Health Science Center at San Antonio. “The Biggs Institute will be the first comprehensive center of its kind in San Antonio and South Texas.”

San Antonio Sports – $1.375 Million

A troop of children participating in I Play, Afterschool – a program of San Antonio Sports – gather to greet the NCAA Committee delegates. Photo by Iris Dimmick.
A troop of children participating in I Play, Afterschool – a program of San Antonio Sports – gather to greet the NCAA Committee delegates on Sept. 10, 2014. Credit: Iris Dimmick / San Antonio Report

Funding for San Antonio Sports will create neighborhood parks at school playgrounds for public use during non-school hours. Signs at the schools’ entry gates will clearly mark the property as a John L. Santikos School Park, instilling pride in each campus and visibly inviting the public to take full advantage of the exercise and recreational facilities after school hours. This collaborative project includes the City of San Antonio and area school districts.

“San Antonio Sports will honor the legacy of John L. Santikos through the enhancement of our school park program,” stated Russ Bookbinder, president and CEO of San Antonio Sports. “… We are grateful to the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation for this tremendous opportunity to impact the health of our city.”

Haven for Hope – $1 Million

Lamanda Del Toro greets 19 month Haven for Hope resident Kenneth Eanes on campus. Photo by Scott Ball.
Peer Support Specialist Lamanda Del Toro greets Haven for Hope resident Kenneth Eanes on campus. Credit: Scott Ball / San Antonio Report

Haven for Hope offers services and shelter with an emphasis toward addressing the root causes of homelessness. The nonprofit partners with 78 governmental, non-profit and faith-based agencies and was awarded $1 million for a new welcome center to coordinate homeless care services on the Haven for Hope campus.

“The funds will be used to greatly expand our capacity to help those in need,” stated Kenneth Wilson, president and CEO of Haven for Hope. “The John L. Santikos Welcome Center will be widely known as the place to come when help is needed. So many lives are saved at Haven, and we are appreciative of Mr. Santikos and the San Antonio Area Foundation who enable us to do much more. Certainly, we are all indebted to Mr. Santikos who unselfishly shared his wealth with our community.”

CentroMed – $800,000

CentroMed is a full service network of 21 clinics offering quality primary healthcare services to improve the health status of underserved and vulnerable populations. The Indian Creek community in San Antonio’s Council District 4 has been identified as an economically disadvantaged and medically underserved area, and has, thus, been designated as a Primary Care Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA). Indian Creek is a high-risk area with increased demand for social and City services due to elevated concentrations of Medicaid births, single mothers, teen mothers, and mothers who receive late or no prenatal care. The organization was awarded $800,000.

“We are very grateful for the generous grant from the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation in support of the CentroMed Indian Creek Project,” stated Ernesto Gómez, Ph.D., CentroMed president and CEO. “These funds will support the construction of a primary health clinic and wellness center to provide medical, dental, behavioral, and wellness services to a medically underserved part of our Southside community.”

Clarity Child Guidance Center – $672,280

Children and staff at Clarity Child Guidance Center. Courtesy photo.
One in five children has a diagnosable mental disorder. Credit: Courtesy / Clarity Child Guidance Center.

The Clarity Child Guidance Center provides mental health care for children ages 3-17. It is staffed with the largest group of child and adolescent mental health professionals in the region and offers hospitalization, day treatment, and outpatient therapy for nearly 9,000 kids each year. Their innovative approach to care – aptly named Claritycare and Play with Purpose – is integrated into the center’s treatment plans. Clarity Child Guidance Center is one of only a handful of organizations across the nation providing these services and, thus, received a $672,280 gift.

“Clarity Child Guidance Center is honored to be one of the inaugural investments that the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation will make in our community through the capital and naming rights funding,” stated Fred Hines, president and CEO of Clarity Child Guidance Center. “This commitment to children with mental health needs is an important stand for children who have been stigmatized for far too long.”

San Antonio Food Bank – $500,000

The San Antonio Food Bank provides food and grocery products to more than 530 partner agencies in 16 counties throughout Southwest Texas. In fiscal year 2015, the Food Bank provided nearly 62 million pounds of food. The Santikos Foundation granted the organization $500,000 to continue its efforts to fight hunger and food insecurity.

“Receiving support from the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation for our expansion into New Braunfels and Comal County allows us to complete a first-class volunteer engagement center with the Santikos name prominently displayed in it,” stated Eric Cooper, president and CEO of the Food Bank. “We are excited that every future volunteer at our New Braunfels Food Bank facility will engage in service under the banner of the Santikos name. Santikos and service will be forever linked due to this extraordinary gift.”

Bags of produce are handed out to families in need of food. Photo by Scott Ball.
Bags of produce are handed out to families in need of food at the San Antonio Food Bank. Credit: Scott Ball / San Antonio Report

Hondo Public Library – $125,000

The City of Hondo Public Library focuses on providing opportunities to promote children’s literacy, as well as related resources for the community. Children’s programs include Story Hour/Early Literacy and the Summer Reading Program. Highlighting the summer months is the ever popular Summer Reading Program sponsored by the Friends of the Hondo Public Library and Texas State Library and Archives Commission. Special collections include the Caregiver’s Resource Center made possible by the Alzheimer’s Association. The Hondo Public Library was granted $125,000.

“The impact such an innovative children’s educational center will have on our community will be decidedly profound; museum quality learning environs and dynamic micro-exhibitions will engage our children’s library patronage through recreational reading spaces, new opportunities for S.T.E.A.M. (science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics) expression, and pioneering technology upgrades,” stated Rachael Greve, director of the Hondo Public Library. “Through a grant from the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation, a fund of the San Antonio Area Foundation, the Library’s ‘Imagination Stations’ will fill a regional void for stimulating family and field trip fun.”

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Iris Gonzalez

Iris Gonzalez writes about technology, life science and veteran affairs.