3 new nonprofit initiatives in Birmingham, including Project Empathy

King’s Home recently dedicated this new facility. Photo via King’s Home

Our Birmingham nonprofits are constantly rising to meet the needs of our community, and 2020 has brought more needs than ever. These 3 local organizations are stepping up to the plate, and you can, too. Here’s how.

1. Project Empathy

This project isn’t the only good they do. Photo via Presbytery of Sheppards and Lapsley on Facebook

Project Empathy for Central Alabama is a partnership between the Presbytery of Sheppards and Lapsley and RIP Medical Debt, Inc.

This 5-month campaign has a goal to forgive medical debt in 10 Black Belt Counties in the bounds of the presbytery. Every dollar raised forgives $100 of medical debt.

These counties are Chambers, Macon, Lowndes, Dallas, Wilcox, Perry, Hale, Greene, Sumter and Pickens. Approximately 173,000 people live in these counties, and there is about $13,000,000 in medical debt.

“This Project will aid the poor in some of the most poverty-stricken regions of our state. By this we can help lessen the burden of the people’s debts. Come and help us combat poverty and show God’s love.”

2. ArtWorks@TheDJD

Sharing Alabama art with the world. Photo via Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre on Facebook

ArtWorks@TheDJD is a digital performance series created through a grants program for four artists in Birmingham or Alabama. The initiative is hosted by The Dorothy Jemison Day Theater (DJD) at the Alabama School of Fine Arts (ASFA).

They are currently accepting applications from professional artists for $1,000 grants until Oct. 7 in theater, music, visual arts, creative writing, dance or an interdisciplinary combination.

“A survey by Americans for the Arts found that 62% of artists were fully unemployed, and more than 94% had experienced a loss of income from the pandemic.

These small grants certainly won’t fill the gap, but we hope that they will help the artists and that our theater will continue to be an arts hub for the community during a socially distanced arts season.”

3. Jane’s House

Jane’s House will be home to teenage girls enrolled in the King’s Home Youth Transitional Living Program (TLP).

TLP provides an alternative living arrangement for foster youth (ages 16-19) in the custody of Alabama DHR with opportunities to practice independent living skills in a variety of settings.

The program is designed to allow youth to experience the natural consequences of daily actions and decisions with the safety net of program staff. Jane’s House is named for beloved donor Mrs. Jane Franks. It will house up to seven teenage girls from TLP.

“I am excited about supporting these precious young ladies in honor of my parents Byron and Ruby Johnston.

My prayer is that this home will be a haven where they can find strength and comfort in a beautiful environment as they grow in their independence.”

Jane Franks

Do you know of more Birmingham nonprofits in need of support? Be sure to send them this form so we can help get the word out.

  • A Birmingham transplant who can usually be found hitting a new hiking trail or restaurant opening when she's not writing stories and snapping photos for Bham Now.