FORT SMITH, Ark. — On Wednesday (March 3) the Fort Smith Children’s Shelter was awarded $20,000 at the 33rd Annual Arkansas Business Awards from the Arkansas Community Foundation for the Shelter’s transformative impact on youth in foster care.
For the past 20 years, Arkansas Community Foundation has celebrated excellence in corporate philanthropy at the Arkansas Business of the Year event.
The “Smart Corporate Giving” award is traditionally given to Arkansas businesses that have demonstrated exemplary commitment to their communities through measurable and successful philanthropic programs.
This year, in honor of the 61 Smart Corporate Giving Award winners, the Community Foundation chose three worthy “Non-Profit of the Year” past recipients to honor with award prizes worth $22,000.
The Fort Smith Children’s Shelter (who received “Non-Profit of the Year” by Arkansas Business in 2017) was announced as the winning non-profit and awarded $20,000.
“We are truly humbled to be chosen as the recipient of this award,” said the Children’s Shelter, Director of Development, Ashley Forsgren. “With 1/3 of our budget normally fulfilled by a fundraiser that could not take place due to Covid-19, 2020 presented a financial hardship on the Shelter but also provided the opportunity for us to dig deeper into our mission. In 2020, the Shelter managed to successfully implement a model of care for our youth as well as expand our independent living program, GetREAL24. Because of newly available funding from the State and continued support from the community, we continued to provide long-term housing solutions, therapeutic resources, and supportive life-skills services to youth in foster care who call the Children’s Shelter and GetREAL24 their safe home. We are honored to be recognized for the transformative impact we are making on each of our kids in care.”