Just as promised, Austin FC launched its philanthropic arm, 4ATX Foundation, for the club’s soccer-specific charitable efforts in the Austin community.
Majority owner and CEO Anthony Precourt seeded an initial $1 million to kick off 4ATX in April 2019. A 501(c)3 organization, it’s led by a Board of Directors, made up of Austin FC staff, as well as Austin business and community leaders. The Butler Bros. design firm, creators of the Austin FC logo, produced the 4ATX Foundation badge.
The Foundation awards grants and charitable contributions to deserving organizations in the community. In its inaugural year, the organization made these contributions:
- $500,000 contribution to Foundation Communities, to build studio apartments three miles from the stadium, some reserved for low-income veterans and homelessness transitioning
- $25,000 contribution to Upper Ninety ATX to support soccer and education programs in low-income communities
- $15,000 contribution to the Dove Springs Recreation Center futsal court in Southeast Austin. led by nonprofit Soccer Assist
- $10,000 contribution to BuildSoccer, for a soccer park in South Austin
- Partnered with Austin Parks Foundation to install 10 new soccer nets in publicly accessible East Austin park locations
- Hosted 10 youth soccer clinics around Austin, giving participants a free soccer ball
- During the coronavirus, donated to the Stand With Austin Fund, brought food trucks to healthcare workers, and provided resources to the community.
- In April 2020, the club joined in the Fanatics’ #AllinChallenge with Josh Wolff offering an incredible on field opportunity for the winner bidder.
- In February 2021, Austin FC players Matt Besler, Hector Jimenez, and Brad Stuver launched a GoFundMe campaign through 4ATX Foundation supporting relief of Austinites affected by the devastating winter storms.
4ATX Foundation is tasked with fulfilling many of the community benefits required in the lease agreement with the City of Austin, including youth soccer clinics and camps, cash contributions to local organizations, cash donations for affordable housing, volunteer hours, complimentary match tickets, scholarships, and more.
In February 2020, Austin FC made a huge step toward its community commitment by hiring Kaitlin Swarts, founder of Upper Ninety, as VP of Community Engagement. Upper Ninety will continue its mission as part of 4ATX Foundation.
BIG NEWS: We’re thrilled to announce that as of today, we will operate as a program of 4ATX Foundation, the official foundation of @Austin FC. In addition, our founder, @kaitlinswarts, has been named Austin FC’s VP of Community Engagement. Link in bio for more! 🌳⚽️📚💚 pic.twitter.com/gAJP8KmTU2
— Upper Ninety (@UpperNinetyATX) February 6, 2020
The club officially announced a name change of Upper Ninety to Verde Leaders as part of its roadmap unveiling in September 2020. Verde Leaders is the signature program of 4ATX Foundation, focused on helping students and young people in low-income communities across Austin and Central Texas.