HOUSTON (December 15, 2022) – United Way of Greater Houston today announces a $1 million gift from Rich and Nancy Kinder to support United Way’s work in helping families go from surviving to thriving at a time when many are struggling to afford basic monthly necessities in the Greater Houston community. The lingering effects of the pandemic, combined with rising inflation that has significantly increased the cost of basic needs such as gas, groceries and utilities, has placed an added burden on working households.
The Kinders’ generous gift comes as United Way celebrates 100 years of service to the Greater Houston community and will support the organization’s work to help families and individuals achieve a more sustainable financial future. Driven by data from the United Way ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) Report that shows that even before the COVID-19 pandemic, 14% of Greater Houston households are living on incomes below the Federal Poverty Level, and another 33% of working households don’t earn enough to afford the basic necessities of life, United Way’s work helps people prosper through programs focused on financial stability, early childhood and youth development, and physical and behavioral health care, all supported by a foundation of basic needs assistance and help for those escaping violence.
“We are grateful to the Kinders for their continued commitment to United Way and our work to help people not only land on their feet, but stay there,” said Amanda McMillian, president and CEO, United Way of Greater Houston. “The Kinders prioritize investing in our local community to create a better quality of life for all and we have the highest admiration for the way they lead by example.”
The Kinders are longtime donors to United Way of Greater Houston and this is the fourth consecutive year for the generous couple to make a $1 million campaign gift, the Luminary Leadership Giving level. The $1 million Luminary Giving level was established to recognize the example of philanthropic leaders like the Kinders who are investing funds to support United Way’s work to answer immediate, basic needs as well as provide financial stability services that transform lives over time.
“Helping our hardworking neighbors achieve a more sustainable financial future is an important part of building a better Houston for all of us,” said Rich Kinder, chairman of the Kinder Foundation. “We believe in United Way of Greater Houston’s work and the impact their greater focus on financial stability can have in removing barriers to a better future for so many in our community.”
McMillian noted that the organization is preparing for the release of new ALICE data that will likely illuminate the increased need in our community, and that it will take everyone working together to transform lives and create lasting change in our community. United Way’s annual community campaign reaches out to workplaces and individuals across the four-county Greater Houston area and every gift, at every level, helps to lift up the community by providing services to those in need.
Both McMillian and the Kinders expressed their hope that this gift will inspire others to join them in making a generous gift to the 2022-23 community campaign that will support United Way’s work to strengthen the greater Houston community.
The $1 million Luminary Leadership Giving level is the highest within United Way of Greater Houston’s Alexis de Tocqueville Society, a group of generous individuals currently numbering more than 700, who make gifts of $10,000 or more annually to United Way of Greater Houston. The group contributed more than $17 million to United Way last year. For more information on leadership giving at United Way of Greater Houston, visit https://unitedwayhouston.org/for-donors/.
About United Way of Greater Houston
United Way of Greater Houston connects people with possibility. We unite donors, volunteers and community partners in support of a focused plan to remove barriers on the path to financial stability for families and individuals. Programs focused on financial stability, early childhood and youth development, and physical and behavioral health care help our neighbors land on their feet and stay there. These programs are supported by a foundation of basic needs assistance and help for those escaping violence. For families and individuals who are ready, our individualized approach includes navigators who personally guide them as they access multiple services on their unique journey to financial stability. United Way also connects our neighbors with help, hope and critical resources 24/7/365 through the 211 Texas/United Way HELPLINE. A focus on equity is integral to United Way’s work and program investments are evaluated on how diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging is incorporated into policies, practices and service delivery. Our community investments are backed by research, ensured by good stewardship and deliver results. For more information, visit www.unitedwayhouston.org.
About the Kinder Foundation
The Kinder Foundation, a family foundation established in 1997 by Rich and Nancy Kinder of Houston, Texas, provides transformational grants that impact urban green space, education, and quality of life. More at www.kinderfoundation.org.