Philanthropist Jane Hunt has gifted $1 million to a transitional housing community for homeless individuals in Northwest Arkansas.
Hunt, the daughter of J.B. and Johnelle Hunt, has committed $1 million to the New Beginnings housing community. This is the largest donation in New Beginnings’ history, according to a news release.
The donation will be used for capital projects for the Fayetteville nonprofit, including completing construction on the facility.
“New Beginnings is overjoyed and grateful to Jane Hunt for embracing the vision of this project and her extreme generosity in supporting New Beginnings. This gift allows us to complete construction and the initial capital campaign and shift our focus to ongoing, sustained programming support for the staff and services that will make the difference in our residents’ lives,” Aaron J. Marshall, president of the Board of Directors of New Beginnings, said in a statement. “Ms. Hunt has given us a considerable runway toward funding the program, and we invite others who want to make this kind of impact to join her in partnering with us in this difficult but necessary effort.”
According to the University of Arkansas Community Design Center, New Beginnings will serve as a pop-up camp in Fayetteville that will provide up to six months of lodging for homeless individuals.
The donation was arranged with the help of the Arkansas Community Foundation.
“I have been exploring the complex issue of homelessness in our community for several years. When I learned about the plans for the New Beginnings Bridge Housing program, I felt that for the first time there was a real solution that could truly work. I am happy to lend my support to the New Beginnings team’s efforts,” Hunt said. “At our March Philanthropy Club meeting, we heard a presentation from New Beginnings Board Member and University of Arkansas Professor, Dr. Kevin Fitzpatrick, and Program Director Solomon Burchfield that ultimately inspired Jane’s gift,” said Jody Dilday, development director for Arkansas Community Foundation. Dilday continued “It is truly my pleasure to work with people like Jane to facilitate deeply rewarding philanthropic experiences.”
Hunt is a founding member of the Arkansas Community Foundation’s Philanthropy Club in Northwest Arkansas. This club is made up of 44 individuals dedicated to improving the local community.
In 2020, Jane and Bryant Hunt, both children of J.B. and Johnelle Hunt announced at $5 million donation to the Fayetteville Public Library’s expansion project. The library will be naming a new courtyard the Hunt Family Gathering Glade and the innovation center will be the Hunt Family Center for Innovation.
Image courtesy of the University of Arkansas Community Design Center