Wesley AME Church
Another historic institution in Houston’s Third Ward will benefit from the Qatar Harvey Fund. The Wesley A.M.E. Church, founded in 1877 near downtown Houston, will receive a grant of approximately $184,000. The church suffered extensive roof, wall and ceiling damage from Hurricane Harvey. The grant will help repair this damage so the church can continue to serve its members and the broader community through outreach programs that include a food pantry and a men’s ministry.
A separate $2.5 million grant also was announced in October, 2018 to support the restoration of Riverside General Hospital in Houston’s Third Ward community. Through a partnership with Harris County and former County Judge Ed Emmett, the grant will help the County renovate the hospital to provide much needed medical care and services. While it has been closed since 2015, other medical facilities in the Third Ward were damaged by Harvey, resulting in a lack of medical facilities in this underserved African-American community. Riverside General Hospital opened in 1926, with a building still standing that was used as Houston’s Negro Hospital School of Nursing, the first of its kind for African-American nurses in Harris County.
Qatar Veterans Fund
The Qatar Harvey Fund established a partnership with the Bob Woodruff Foundation (BWF) in late 2018 to support American veterans who continue to be impacted by Hurricane Harvey. Under the partnership, the BWF has created the Qatar Veterans Fund using a $6 million grant from the Qatar Harvey Fund, part of the $30 million gift from the State of Qatar to assist southeast Texas in its long-term recovery from Hurricane Harvey.
The Qatar Veterans fund will be managed by BWF and will work closely with the Qatar Harvey Fund to coordinate the distribution of funding to a range of programs in support of Texas’ large population of former service personnel and military families. Announcements are expected in the spring of 2019 on the first initiatives of the Qatar Veterans Fund.
The partnership between the Qatar Harvey Fund and the Bob Woodruff Foundation was first announced by BWF board member and 18th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, at BWF’s 12th Annual Stand Up for Heroes benefit in New York City on November 5, 2018. The benefit was attended by His Excellency Sheikh Meshal bin Hamad Al-Thani, Ambassador of the State of Qatar to the U.S., and his wife [name to be filled in].
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A $2.5 million grant was announced October 18, 2018 to support Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner’s Fund to Reduce Homelessness. This is a new initiative by Mayor Turner and the Qatar Harvey Fund is a “Founding Funder.” The mayor will direct the funds to homelessness services with an emphasis in the pilot program neighborhoods of his Complete Communities initiative: Acres Home, Gulfton, Near Northside, Second Ward and Third Ward. Houston’s homeless population increased for the first time since 2011 due to Hurricane Harvey.