In 2000 the Wright Family Foundation was established to provide educational opportunities for children in Baltimore City. As long time residents of the Baltimore Metropolitan area, Lucy and Vernon Wright are keenly aware of the challenges of Baltimore’s inner city. Inspired by his father’s example of service to others, Vernon was instilled with an ethic of giving back to the community. Lucy recognized, through her experiences as a volunteer in the inner city during her college years, the great need to utilize education as a catalyst for improving the lives of at-risk children. These experiences helped form the Mission of the Foundation.
The Foundation was fortunate to have the experience and wisdom of other educational funders especially through membership in the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers. It is a goal of the Foundation to work collaboratively with other organizations to assess the needs and opportunities within the City Community. It was apparent from the beginning that education, especially literacy, be the focus of support. Art and music are seen to enhance learning as is afterschool and summer time.
As the Foundation evolved and to include opportunities for the next generation of family involvement, the Foundation expanded its giving to the City of Austin. Keeping the focus on education, but recognizing the unique challenges in Austin led the Foundation to include teenage pregnancy as one of its focus areas. In Baltimore, the Foundation narrowed its attention to our youngest learners by including support for parents as children’s first teachers and programs to prepare children for kindergarten.
The Foundation is committed to children’s educational experiences and remains responsive in its support through the use of data and community needs.