Family Foundation of Southwest Louisiana (Family Foundation), the endowment arm of Family & Youth Counseling Agency (Family & Youth), honored Cheniere Energy’s Community Investment Council, Friends of Shannon Cox, and CHRISTUS Fund on November 2, 2017 during the Philanthropy Celebration and Awards Breakfast, presented by Entergy, at L’Auberge Casino Resort, for giving their time, talent, and treasure for the betterment of Southwest Louisiana.
Cheniere Energy began operating Sabine Pass LNG in 2008. Since then they have become a major community partner in Southwest Louisiana, showing they are committed to the communities and environments where they are located and where their employees and their families live and work. Through this commitment, they created the Community Investment Councils.
The Councils are comprised of local employees who identify needs within the community and direct contributions and volunteer time to address those needs.
Members of the Community Investment Council have participated in numerous events across Southwest Louisiana in support of their community. They have also supported economic, workforce and environmental development initiatives; including donating sixteen acres worth of artificial oyster reefs in 2007 to protect oyster populations as operations began at the Sabine Pass LNG terminal.
Their largest project is the on-going Craft Development Program, which supports workforce development in the welding industry for students and transitioning military vets.
The Community Investment Council has also provided support to Family and Youth’s divisions and initiatives. For the past two years, they have donated proceeds from their Annual Golf Classic at the National Golf Course in Westlake, Louisiana to support Family & Youth.
In 2013, taking a new approach, the committee organized the Inaugural Derby for Dollars event which takes place annually in May at The Stables at Le Bocage. This Kentucky Derby style event coincides with the annual Kentucky Derby race at Churchill Downs which is televised during the event. Derby for Dollars is currently the highest grossing event that benefits any of Family and Youth’s divisions. Since 2013, the event has raised over half a million dollars in support the Shannon Cox Counseling Center. Derby for Dollars takes over 6 months to plan and features an area wide collaboration of local businesses and organizations, all who support the mission of Family and Youth and the Shannon Cox Counseling Center.
Throughout the year, the Friends of Shannon Cox spend hours bringing their individual expertise together to plan each detail of the event from the landscaping to the jumping exhibition, all to ensure that Derby for Dollars continues to be a success.
The CHRISTUS Fund promotes the health and welfare for people in need, providing support for health and human services from Houston, Texas and beyond. They acknowledge that each community is different and believe that by working with community-led partnerships they are able to achieve sustainable improvements in these communities. This provides individuals with access to services that are necessary to them.
In 2016, the CHRISTUS Fund provided funding in support of Family & Youth’s Children’s Advocacy Center and Shannon Cox Counseling Center. Funding from CHRISTUS Fund allowed for children who were victims or witnesses to traumatic experiences such as sexual and/or physical abuse, domestic violence, or other forms of crime, to access counseling services at the Shannon Cox Counseling Center. This partnership helps children begin the long journey of healing after a traumatic experience.
The counseling services provided to these children through this partnership are vital to their overall ability to recover after the experiences they endured and we are thankful to CHRISTUS Fund for helping us serve and protect our most vulnerable resource and enabling them to heal in mind, body, and spirit.
CHRISTUS Fund has also provided support to Family & Youth’s Leadership Center for Youth, providing opportunities in career exploration, civic engagement, and service learning to youth in our community so that the youth of today can indeed become the leaders of tomorrow.