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January 18th, 2018 / News & Press

ourBRIDGE for KIDS Awarded $50,000 Grant from The Leon Levine Foundation


After School Program Helps Children of Refugees and Immigrants Achieve Academic Success 

Charlotte, NC (January 18, 2018)  – The Leon Levine Foundation announced today it will support ourBRIDGE for KIDS with a $50,000 grant, with a $30,000 grant given in December 2017 and a $20,000 matching gift challenge grant over the next six months. Donations made to ourBRIDGE by new donors – or donations that represent an increased gift by a current donor – will be matched dollar for dollar up to $20,000 if made between now and May 31, 2018.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for us,” said Sil Ganzó, ourBRIDGE for KIDS Executive Director. “This grant will have a significant impact on our efforts to support the education and integration of newly arrived and first generation American students. As Charlotte has continued to welcome refugees and immigrants, ourBRIDGE has committed to expand our program to meet the complex needs of this growing population of refugee and immigrant children. Attracting new donors and expanding our individual donor base will be essential for ourBRIDGE to fulfill our promise to these children. The Leon Levine Foundation continues to set an exemplary standard of intentional and transformational philanthropy.”

ourBRIDGE for KIDS is a not-for-profit after school program for the children of refugees and immigrants that helps them achieve academic success and integration into the community through innovative instructional methods and a celebration of cultural diversity. ourBRIDGE offers an experiential-based learning curriculum to help our students achieve the fundamentals of English language acquisition through activities that incorporate STEAM elements and encourage cultural pride and inclusion, civic engagement, community involvement, problem solving and critical thinking. Our curriculum enables our students to experiment, explore the arts and celebrate Charlotte’s rich cultural diversity. Further, ourBRIDGE supports the whole child by creating a nurturing environment where children’s beliefs, experiences and opinions are heard, valued and embraced.

“We are excited to provide this initial grant to an organization whose work is so closely tied to our founder’s mission,” said Tom Lawrence, Executive Director of The Leon Levine Foundation. “While still young and growing, ourBRIDGE for KIDS is doing all the right things to build long term sustainability and provide their students with the academic and social support they need to succeed. In addition to our unrestricted operating support, we hope that The Leon Levine Foundation’s match will incentivize other donors to give.”

To learn more about ourBRIDGE for KIDS and to make a gift that will be matched by The Leon Levine Foundation, visit and click on the “Donate Today” button. Additionally, donations may be mailed to ourBRIDGE for KIDS, 3925 Willard Farrow Drive, Charlotte, NC 28215.

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About ourBRIDGE for KIDS

ourBRIDGE for KIDS offers out-of-school programming that provides a bridge for these refugee and immigrant children to learn English and be part of a learning community that supports them and their families and values their cultures. The organization’s after school program partners with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and currently supports 120 children who represent 22 different cultures from four Title I elementary and middle schools (K-7).  For more information, visit

About The Leon Levine Foundation

Started by Leon Levine, the creator of the first Family Dollar Store in Charlotte, NC in 1980, The Leon Levine Foundation’s mission is to improve the human condition by creating permanent, measurable and life-changing impact throughout the Carolinas. The organization invests in nonprofits with a successful track record and a focus on sustainability in the areas of healthcare, education, Jewish values and human services. For more information, please visit

Media Contact

For further information, images and interviews, please contact:

Lauren Pansegrau (Communications Director, Volunteer)


Direct: (803) 429-3933


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