ExxonMobil’s gift to CitySquare will help fight poverty in North Texas
by Allison Hatfield | December 17, 2019
For more than 30 years, CitySquare has been fighting the causes and effects of poverty in Dallas. With a mission of “service, advocacy, and friendship,” the organization supports programs that address the problems of hunger, housing, and healthcare in low-income populations. To assist in that mission, ExxonMobil gave a $50,000 holiday gift to CitySquare earlier this month. ExxonMobil chairman and CEO Darren Woods presented the company’s 14th annual holiday gift, which the corporation gives each year to a deserving nonprofit in North Texas. Woods says ExxonMobil “is committed to investing in the communities around the world where we live and work.”
Since its founding in 1988, CitySquare has grown into a broad community development organization that today provides nearly two dozen social service programs, including healthcare and housing assistance, workforce readiness, legal aid, crisis intervention, and financial coaching to more than 50,000 people each year. It is, in fact, the largest public housing provider in North Texas, with more than 700 housing units in Dallas. It also operates a food pantry and child nutrition program, offering free meals to kids after school and during the summer. Its clinic provides medical services for uninsured children and adults. Pre-employment training programs and legal services help participants build financial stability.
Between 2013 and 2017, 17.7% of people in Dallas County were living below the federal poverty level, according to the United States Census Bureau. That number includes the 27.1% of children under the age of 18 who are living below the poverty threshold. Those numbers reflect a downward trend, though the area’s poverty rate remains higher than the national average, and in some areas of southern Dallas, as much as 40% of households live in poverty. According to the Mayor’s Task Force on Poverty, driving factors include gaps in affordable transportation, home ownership, education, and English proficiency.
CitySquare, with help from ExxonMobil, will continue to address those issues in 2020 and the years to come.
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