2023 Q4
"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth,
whatever you did for one of the least of
these brothers of mine, you did for me.'"

-Matthew 25:40


By Thomas Kincaid, Senior Program Officer

It has been over 10 years since Jim Clifton, Chairman of the Gallup organization, wrote about what he called “one of the most important discoveries Gallup has ever made.”  In a poll across 160 countries, the data revealed a new personal dream for most of the globe.  Gone were the days where respondents first listed peace, freedom, or family.  Now, most people simply want a “good job.”

Cynthia Mwikali knows this need well…because she is actively working to meet it.

Cynthia and her husband are the entrepreneurs behind Tuscan Sun Builders Hardware. Only two years old, the firm builds houses in Kenya. But more importantly, Tuscan already employs 13 people. What’s it like to work for Cynthia? “They are happy to work with us and to be here.  I thank God.  He shows me how to best invest in them.” (Find out more about Cynthia and her business here.)

According to Sinapis Group, of the 5 billion people who make up today’s working-age population, 84% live in developing countries. 70% of this population work in informal, low-paying jobs. These jobs not only lack stability or insurance or retirement benefits; most of these informal work scenarios lack basic labor law and safety protections.

Most of us have had jobs with both advantages and disadvantages. We’ve had jobs that brought out the best of what we had to offer, and jobs that perhaps weren’t the best fit. But very few reading this post will have experienced the rampant insecurity that is constitutive of an informal job in the developing world. Far from just financial challenge, these employment situations can have enormous physical dangers without any form of safety net for the worker or their families.



saw over 900 people rescued from sex trafficking in 2023 as a result of 34 raids executed through global partnerships.


was featured in Living Magazine Texas‘ December issue discussing the impact of their Christ-centered children’s home.


hosted a ribbon cutting for its newly renovated shelter for families experiencing homelessness in North Dallas.


celebrates its 20th anniversary of providing Christian mentorship for youth in South and West Dallas.


partnered with Petco in its 2 million free vaccine initiative in November to bring free vaccines to community pets across the country.


celebrated the opening of its new Vogel North childcare center in partnership with Family Gateway.


celebrated the opening of its newly renovated playground thanks to funding from the Foundation.

"The Lord has done great things for us;
and we are glad."

-Psalm 126:3


By Terese Stevenson, Vice President of Grants

[In celebration of National Philanthropy Day on November 15, we asked our Vice President of Grants to share her reflections on working in the philanthropy space. Terese Stevenson has been with The Rees-Jones Foundation since its inception and we appreciated the chance to gain her perspective on grantmaking over the past 17 years].

In the world of philanthropy, we talk a lot about how we consider our giving – our investments in terms of rewards, risks, and impact. And just as importantly, we talk even more about our love for the people we serve.

Very early on in my career in philanthropy, at the very birthing of The Rees-Jones Foundation, we were blessed with a man who advised us, who became our comrade in a sense as we looked at what might be possible for this new foundation.

This advisor would sometimes accompany staff on our early site visits, primarily to introduce us to leaders and organizations. As we were ending our time together on the visit, he always had a last question for the leaders we were meeting with: “If you could realize the biggest dream for your organization, what would it be?”

Now I have to say, this always made me a little nervous. My thoughts always included “Where was this going? What expectation were we setting by asking that question? Were we implying The Rees-Jones Foundation could address everyone’s dreams? Would potential partners now believe we would fund their “ultimate” dreams because we asked?”

"But seek first the kingdom of God
and his righteousness, and all these things
will be added to you."

-Matthew 6:33


The Foundation awarded $9.1 million through 44 grants during Q4 (October, November, and December).

Below is a small representation of the nonprofit organizations that the Foundation humbly supported:


$85,000 | Funding to support the Atlas Free Accelerator Fellowship to combat sex trafficking of minors in India.


$50,000 | Funding to support youth programs serving children in the Bonton and Ideal neighborhoods in South Dallas.


$50,000 | Funding to support the residential program for children temporarily separated from their families.


$1,000,000 | Funding to support the capital campaign to build a new Dallas Leadership Center.


$195,800 | Funding to support general operations for youth mentoring programs in the Lake Highlands neighborhood.


$1,500,000 | Funding to support operations in Ethiopia, PATH system implementations across global programs, and new donor identification programs.


$75,000 | Funding to support their out-of-school time programming.


$40,000 | Funding to support the Childcare and Advocacy Program which connects clients to resources after surviving domestic violence or human trafficking.


$1,500,000 | Funding to support capital improvements, equipment and rent for The Lifesaving Partnership Hub warehouse space to increase capacity.


$100,000 | Funding toward the Ascent program which supports Christian entrepreneurs in Kenya with business accelerator programs.

TEXAS 2036

$250,000 | Funding to support general operations for their work to position Texas for long term prosperity.


$330,000 | Funding to support the Yellowstone Wolf Project.

"Do not neglect to do good
and to share what you have, for
such sacrifices are pleasing to God."

-Hebrews 13:16


“The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:5

The Rees-Jones Foundation awarded 13 nonprofit organizations that serve families impacted by homelessness with Christmas giving grants to close out 2023. Grantee recipients included: Arlington Life Shelter, Dallas Leadership Foundation. Dallas Life, Denton County Friends of the Family, Family Gateway, Genesis Women’s Shelter, Interfaith Family Services, Mosaic Family Services, Presbyterian Night Shelter, Rainbow Days, SafeHaven of Tarrant County, and Union Gospel Mission of Tarrant County.

A total of $50,100 was awarded so that children could have a tangible experience of joy this season.  

Christmas giving grants have been awarded annually since 2009 when the Foundation’s founders lamented the number of children living in homeless shelters during the Christmas season and did not want to think that these children may not have some sort of Christmas. The families who are served by these grantees have been impacted by homelessness, domestic violence, child abuse or other adverse experiences and have to spend the holidays in shelters or other temporary housing. With Christmas funding, some organizations will purchase gifts to directly give to the children in their care or setup a store for parents and caregivers to shop in for Christmas gifts for their children.

Items purchased by grantees this year include toys, bicycles, presents with a holiday meal, stockings, and an updated play center.

When John tells us at the beginning of his Gospel account that “Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it,” it is never more evidenced than when we see children experience the joy of being seen, known, and loved. Through even just a few gifts during the Christmas season, we have heard story after story and seen photo after photo of the impact that this funding can have on the life of children and their parents and caregivers.

To see a child eye’s beaming with excitement as they unwrap gifts, their parents or caregivers smiling for the what may be the first time in a while—the experience of giving is a divine gift to the Foundation as we watch families experience the light of Christ.

The Foundation is consistently in awe at the work organizations are doing in the community to bring Light to the darkness that many families have experienced this year. As we step in 2024, we want to thank our grantees who we had the chance to partner with in 2023—thank YOU for bringing hope to children across North Texas and internationally. We step forward into the new year in faith that truly “the darkness will not overcome.” The Light of the Savior we proclaim has come.

"The light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness has not overcome it."

-John 1:5

The mission of The Rees-Jones Foundation is to serve God
by serving others, sharing His resources in ways that provide
opportunities for the disadvantaged, relief for the suffering,
and encouragement in the growth and well-being of children
and families. In so doing, the Foundation hopes that the
love of Christ is experienced in practical ways by those served.


25:40 is a quarterly newsletter from The Rees-Jones Foundation. This newsletter is specially designed for you – our wonderful grantees! We hope that you will find the information both useful and interesting. If you would like to be added to our newsletter email list, please contact Sara Meyers at smeyers@rees-jonesfoundation.org.

“The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'”

– Matthew 25:40

ABOUT THE NAME | We decided to name this newsletter 25:40 after the scripture from Matthew 25, which we as a foundation, draw inspiration from in our work. Through our grant making, we seek to deliver hope, resources, and support to those in our community who are in need.

The Rees-Jones Foundation is a private foundation that works with non-profit organizations, primarily in North Texas, that provide programs that defend the welfare of children suffering from abuse or neglect, afford relief to those facing mental health challenges, provide youth with opportunities for enrichment and character development, encourage healthy families and communities, and promote the humane treatment of companion animals.

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