North Texas Geary Girls Ranch, a foster home community for teenage girls, is proud to announce the following achievements since our inception a little over a year ago. We are building our first home of eight on our 11 acres of donated property in Grayson County, 390 Martinek Rd., Howe, Tx. Our goal is to have our first home on the ranch with all programs, volunteers, and operations ready by summer of 2019. In the meantime, we are operating a transitional home in Denison, Texas with our first foster mom in place and helping up to 3 teenage girls. Our child placement agency, Kids First, will be training our respites and mentors as well as doing all required background checks on our volunteers beginning in February of 2019.
Accomplishments to date of the North Texas Geary Girls Ranch:
1. A board of 10 women with varied backgrounds in business and education.
2. A 501 ( c ) (3) determination from the IRS, dated December 19,2017.
3. A successful kick off event back in November,2017, that garnered the desired attention and support for our vision of what North Texas Geary Girls Ranch would be.
4. A professional and informative website enabling the receipt of donations beginning in November of 2017. www.gearygirlsranch.org
5. A business email account to receive input and correspondence for the ranch. firstname.lastname@example.org
6. Networking with organizations and businesses in the surrounding communities thru meetings, presentations, and programs.
7. A presentation to the District County Court of Grayson County by Susie Black Holamon, that led to interviews by the local media, resulting in an outpouring of support resulting in donations of materials, business services , and individuals who want to be part of what we are creating.
8. Our architect, David Baca of David Baca Studios in Sherman is donating his time and expertise in creating plans for us. He has designed a site plan for the eight homes. He has created a blueprint for the floor plan of Geary Girls Ranch homes that will accommodate up to six girls and foster parents in each home.
9. Fundraiser campaigns continue thru our social media professional who monitors, updates and publishes information, articles, and campaigns for our Geary Girls Ranch Facebook page. We have received tremendous support in goods and services in the surrounding communities. Our business manager has created a donate button on FB and on our website as well as creating donor management programs, enabling us to track our fundraiser campaigns such as: “ North Texas Giving Day” in September and “Giving Tuesday” in November.
10. We had the first North Texas Geary Girls Ranch Charity tournament at the Bridges Golf Club on Saturday, September 8 th . With an auction, dinner, drawings, prizes and golf, we made $25,000 at this event.
11. We are building a volunteer, mentor, and resource file that now has approximately 100 contacts to further our goal of success.
12. Our first foster mom is here and is ready for licensing and girls as soon as the first home is completed, but in the meantime will move into a transitional foster home and begin helping girls in Feb. 2019.
13. We have recruited a very qualified Admissions Director who is a Licensed Child care administrator (LCCA), Robin Harbin, who is the director of the North Texas Youth Connection in Sherman at this time and will begin helping us in the transitional home.
14. We have a Child Placement Agency, Kid’s First, Inc. With offices in Ft.Worth and Dallas and as we grow, will place a caseworker in Grayson county. They are in line with our mission and will refer girls to us from CPS. We will serve girls from DFPS Reg. 3 which encompasses 19 counties. We will also take referrals for displaced teens from churches, youth organizations and school counselors.
15. We have attorneys, architects, building & supply companies and construction companies in the surrounding communities donating all or a portion of their goods and services.
16. We have almost completed a 1000’ road back to the property which has been cleared and the first home staked off, so that trucks can get in to complete each stage of the construction.
17. We have a builder with 20 years experience, David Sokolowski, S&S Commercial Builder, working with us who will be with us for the 10 years to complete a total of 8 homes on the property.
18. We have 11 acres donated to us at 390 Martinek Rd. In Howe, Texas, Grayson County and a 3000 square foot greenhouse donated to us. In the future we will have a variety of animals on the property as well with plans for a barn.
19. We have had our 2 nd annual Ranch event at the Whitehorse Steakhouse and ranch in Valley View in November, 2018.
20. We are finalizing plans for a 2 day event in May, 2019, with a Friday night show and our second annual Charity tournament on Saturday at the WinStar Resort. The show Friday night will feature “ A Magical Life”, Jason Bishop, an Illusionist, who grew up in foster care and shares his story with his show. He has been featured on all the major networks and we hope to continue a relationship with him as our headliner show to kick off future 2-day events at the WinStar.
21. We will again be part of North Texas Giving Day in September for the second year, with a goal of $35,000 to $40,000 raised in one day. As a new start up organization and 501C3, we raised $20,000 in 2018 in one day.
22. We will have our annual end of the year Ranch event and push for year end donations which has brought in close to $15k this past year.
23. We will also have other events throughout the year that will garner support; one being an open house at the completion of the first home.
24. Our 2019 events calendar includes: fundraiser events, individual donations, foundation grants, company sponsors and church partnerships such as: Cross Timbers in Valley View who share the mission of foster care, Sherman Bible where the girls will attend once they are on the ranch and Midway Church in Aubrey, Texas. We have been chosen by Midway to be the local mission for a one day ticketed event “Cultivate” which could
potentially bring in 450+ women to hear the speaker Kelly Minter with fellowship and music. We will be able to share our mission thru a stage presence with video and a table with printed material and sales of items that will benefit Geary Girls Ranch.
25. We are continuing with grant applications as well, knowing that most want one year in operation to qualify, however, we are applying for a Groundfloor grant thru United Way at this time.
26. We are open to the naming of homes, dedication of rooms, etc. As recognition for substantial donations to build our homes debt free.
27. We are leasing 3 bedroom/2 bath home in Denison as a transitional foster home helping up to 3 teenage girls with foster mom, Lisa Hilliard, beginning Feb. 1,2019 , until the completion of the build of the first home on the ranch property.