San Antonio Area Foundation Helps Local Businesses with Charitable Efforts

With charitable giving on the increase, thanks to web sites like 'Go Fund Me,' the San Antonio Area Foundation is establishing a 'Corporate Philanthropy Program,' which will help local businesses and their workers help employees and others who are facing a 'sudden financial hardship,' News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

The Foundation's Jennifer Ballesteros says the idea stems from an overwhelming desire of local companies and their employees to reach out to help victims of Hurricane Harvey in September of 2017.

"That was a really big tipping point, where we realized that this was something that we really needed to offer to employers to give them that peace of mind," she said.

She says small and large businesses have approached the SAAF, asking for help structuring a giving campaign, and making sure that the donations get to the right individuals and are not siphoned off by third parties.

"We really do try to help these businesses, say iHeartMedia was engaged in a charitable program, we would customize the platform for iHeartMedia, and figure out what that campaign would look like."

She says the idea is to enable small and large companies to have a well planned campaign to help their own employees in crisis, as well as others who are facing financial hardship due to natural disaster.

The program was also started due to the cut in corporate income tax as part of the 2017 tax plan, in an attempt to encourage businesses to continue to be involved in charitable activities, and assure that those activities meet the needs of the people they are intended to help.

The SAAF is one of the largest foundations in the nation based on asset size, and is known for scholarships, animal protection, environmental stewardship and research grants.  It is perhaps best known as the manager of the John Santikos Charitable Trust, operating the Santikos movie theater chain to benefit charitable causes.

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