Tulsa Area United Way awards $300,000 in Social Innovation Grants



Five local non-profits will share $300,000 in Social Innovation grants from the Tulsa Area United Way (TAUW). The grants are given to 501(c)(3) organizations that present innovative plans to overcome challenges in the community. Proposals were presented in November at the TAUW’s annual “pitch night.” 

“The grants allow organizations to incubate initiatives and bring new strategies to Tulsa and the surrounding area that work elsewhere and can potentially make a positive impact locally,” said Brent Sadler, Vice President of Community Investments at the Tulsa Area United Way. 

Non-profits receiving grants and launching their new programs in 2020 are:  

  • Fab Lab Tulsa 
  • Growing Together
  • Family and Children's Services
  • Tulsa Advocates for the Protection of Children
  • Met Cares

Fab Lab Tulsa will develop the MaTCH Program for recent high school graduates, not attending or planning to attend college, to learn design and digital fabrication skills. This program is designed to prepare students with valuable skills that are needed and to cultivate a highly skilled workforce in Tulsa. 

Growing Together’s Community Leadership Institute provides community members with leadership and development tools to address inequality in their community. It is designed to give individuals the skills necessary to speak up and share ideas. 

Family and Children’s Services is piloting the COPES 9-1-1 program. The service allows Tulsa 9-1-1 dispatchers to quickly connect experts with callers in psychiatric distress by locating the experts in the 9-1-1 office.

Mobile Resource Unit is a Tulsa Advocates for the Protection of Children initiative and will visit rural areas to deliver basic needs such as clothes, car seats and hygiene products to children in the foster care system.  

Met Cares’ Level Up is a scholarship program targeted at individuals in economically-disadvantaged areas of the city. Its specific focus is on single parents striving to enhance their career and provide a strong future for their children.  

Ideas were presented to a panel of volunteer judges, who were looking for innovation, collaboration and non-duplication among non-profit, educational or governmental organizations. The 2020 Pitch Night is Nov. 10 for selected agencies to present their ideas for funding in 2021. 


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