Texas is home to some of the largest and most successful businesses in the country, dominating the Fortune 500 list and ranking as one of the wealthiest states in the country. The Lone Star state has one of the biggest state-wide populations, a huge economy, and a business climate that is ripe to cultivate entreprises. But not only does Texas have a large footprint, it is on the brink of being the state the gives back the most growing impact. In 2016, Texas ranked sixth in the nation for charitable giving. It’s also home to some of the most philanthropic-minded communities that have far surpassed previous year’s charity. Let’s take a look.
Houston is ranked the second highest most charitable city in the nation. As we look back on the anniversary of Hurricane Harvey, we can observe the extraordinary response of Houston’s community. Hurricane Harvey was catastrophic, devastating the Houston metropolitan area, displacing over 30,000 people, and wielding 125 billion dollars worth of damage. Here is just a snapshot of the charitable response this community had:
In the wake of this costly and tremendous natural disaster, the community of Houston and surrounding areas, banded together. Over 300 volunteer organizations responded to help neighbors and strangers alike.
Austin, the fastest growing city in the country, is more than just the capital of Texas, or the live music capital of the world. It is quickly becoming the social innovation capital of the world. With over 6,000 nonprofit organizations, and countless annual days dedicated to giving such as Amplify Austin, or HAAM Day, it's no wonder that Austin is shaping the future of social innovation.
Austin is home to accelerators dedicated to fostering social impact, with programs like Div Inc, a cohort of women and minorities in business that are dedicated to diversity and inclusion. Techstars launched their first Impact Accelerator in Austin, a program for mission-driven founders and entrepreneurs in tech who are committed to solving social problems.
The Center for Social Innovation, a nonprofit community at Springdale General in East Austin, serves organizations committed to driving impactful outcomes. is opening its doors this Fall, serving organizations with a design built to tackle long-term commercial affordability and serve as a permanent home for Austin's social innovation ecosystem. Located at The Center for Social Innovation is Relay Coworking, 10,000+ sq ft of dedicated desks, private studios, and a 5050+ sq ft meeting space available to social entrepreneurs creating scalable change in the world.
Dallas is the third most populated city in the state of Texas, home to a diverse array of industries like banking and other financial services. It’s also y, and it’s one of the fastest-growing cities in the US and a central hub. Dallas is also a hub for innovative charities like North Texas Food Bank, which is a hugely impactful hunger relief initiative, and Dwell with Dignity, a nonprofit dedicated to tackling homelessness with design that promotes health and wellness.
One epicenter for revolutionary innovative is the Parkland Center for Clinical Innovation (PCC). The PCC is a nonprofit research and development center with a mission to serve the poor. They’ve done a trial which has lowered the rate of return visits of patients by 27% (they see 1.2 million patients every year)
San Antonio is growing rapidly as a philanthropic city, with an increase in charitable giving
“by 32.5% over a five year period, with 36 different foundations distributing $1 million or more in contributions, according to a study by Philanthropy Southwest.” - The Rivard Report
The Social Innovation Lab is an eight-week program for students of Alamo Colleges, St. Mary’s University, Trinity University, University of Incarnate Word, and community members can engage with community thought leaders and explore a curriculum designed to cultivate social entrepreneurship. With programs like this available in the second largest city in Texas, it’s no surprise that philanthropy is growing at a rapid rate in San Antonio.
Philanthropitch, the Austin-based social impact fast-pitch competition on a mission to scale innovative nonprofits, expanded to San Antonio for the first time in 2018. The event debut awarded over $100,000 to San Antonio nonprofits.