Kinder Foundation: Texas Grants

OVERVIEW: Richard and Nancy Kinder established the Kinder Foundation contribute to parks, education, and human services in and around their hometown of Houston.

FUNDING AREAS: Urban green space, education, hunger, emergency shelter, heart and cancer treatment, children’s hospitals

IP TAKE: Preserving Houston’s parks and making them more accessible is one of the most important aspects of Kinder Foundation grantmaking.

PROFILE: Established in 1997, the Kinder Foundation is focused on enriching the lives in people in the Greater Houston area. Formerly known as the Richard D. Kinder Foundation, this is a family foundation that is funded by Richard and Nancy Kinder. The couple grew up in small towns in Missouri and Louisiana, but Houston is their beloved longtime home. The funder aims to “enrich the lives of people in the Greater Houston area through transformational grants that impact urban green space, education, and quality of life.”

Buffalo Bayou is the most significant natural resource in Houston, so maintaining and preserving the park is a priority of the Kinder Foundation. The foundation has given millions of dollars to the Houston Parks Board’s Bayou Greenways 2020 project to create new parkland and trails to connect green spaces along the bayous in the city. The Kinders were George W. Bush supporters and helped create the George W. Bush Institute and the George W. Bush Presidential Center with a $10 million grant. The Bush Center is located on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, and the Bush Institute is the policy arm of the center. The Kinders have also been longtime supporters of Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts, Catholic schools through the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, and the Nau Center for Texas Cultural Heritage. Kinder Quality of Life grants have gone to the Texas Heart Institute, the DePelchin Children’s Center, the Houston Food Bank, and the MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Grants in the millions of dollars are not uncommon with this funder. See the Major Gifts page for an update on what Kinder has been funding lately. Kinder is focused primarily, but not exclusively, on the Houston metropolitan area and the state of Texas. It does not provide international support.

The foundation does not accept unsolicited requests for grants. Instead, Kinder only contributes to pre-selected charitable organizations. The best way to get in touch with the foundation is by sending a letter to the foundation at 2229 San Felipe, Suite 1700, Houston, Texas 77019.

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