More than a half-million dollars will be at work within North Texas communities over the next year, as the Ford Motor Company Fund partners with local dealers to address three areas of citizen concern.
On Friday, the fund announced its investment of $550,000 in North Texas community programs and nonprofits during the next 12 months, as part of a new partnership with area Ford dealers.
That number brings Ford’s North Texas donations during the past decade to more than $5 million, the company reported, and more than $20 million statewide.
Ford said it is focusing its philanthropic efforts on the areas of education, teen driving safety and hunger relief.
As part of the initiative, 600 local teens got behind the wheel last week with professional drivers from the Ford Driving Skills for Life program, in free driving clinics that followed a two-week safe driving campaign at area high schools.
“Ford is committed to making a lasting difference in our communities,” said Jim Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. “We listen to our customers and neighbors, and we know they’re concerned about the future of our young people and families.”
This is the 10th year that Ford Motor Company Fund and the Governor’s Highway Safety Association have provided Ford DSFL directly to new young drivers and their parents, the company said.
During the safe driving campaign, Ford also donated two Explorer Sport vehicles to the Irving district to be used in transporting students and teachers to school events. And a Ford Transit Connect van was donated to the North Texas Food Bank, for use in the collection and distribution of food.
Additional donations will be made by Ford and its dealers during coming months, the company said.
Also, the Ford Driving Dreams program which began this school year encourages on-time high school graduation in the Irving Independent School District, and provides $30,000 in scholarships, a peer-to-peer afterschool program, and a district-wide contest with $21,000 in prizes.
"We are delighted that Ford is taking on this major project for North Texas, and look forward to joining with the company to make a difference in our community,” said Charlie Gilchrist, chairman, North Texas Ford Dealers Advertising Fund. “The North Texas Ford Dealers are committed to the future of our communities.”