The name encompasses not only the mission, but the scope as well. Kids Matter International works to show children that they are important even if they live in poverty—even if they were abandoned or orphaned—setting their sights as close to home as Northern Texas and as far away as India and Honduras. In Texas, its work is apparent in children heading to school with new clothing and supplies. In India, an orphanage gives children a home through political unrest and natural disaster. And in Honduras, the organization provides transitional housing for young girls who have faced abuse.
Yet the people behind Kids Matter International know that when facing a foe as intractable as childhood poverty, no one can solve the problem alone. That’s why the organization—which comprises just four full-time staff members—teams up with hundreds of volunteers and dozens of corporate partners to put on programs that directly benefit disadvantaged children.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand to projects big and small at the Groupon Grassroots blog.
The native Spanish speakers of La Academia lead students aged preschooler through adult to a better understanding of the most spoken Romance language. The instructors accomplish this goal through a variety of approaches, including group classes, private and semiprivate lessons, and afterschool sessions. During the summer, they hold Spanish camps that mix learning with fun activities such as Zumba dancing, music, and crafts.
The crowd cheers as a rider clad in Western gear thunders his horse over the dirt floor of the stadium, gracefully casting a lasso to loop in a calf. Minutes later, a trick rider smiles brilliantly before she elicits gasps by dangling vertically in her saddle. This showmanship has been going on for more than 100 years on the turf of the Cowstown Coliseum](http://gr.pn/PrZFzb), where Stockyards Championship Rodeo holds its Western-style rodeo events.
Though trick riding, roping, and bull riding are the stars of the Fodor's-recommended show, cowboy culture can be found throughout the stadium. Live country-western music provides the soundtrack, and occasional visits from singing cowboys or beat-boxing bulls add an air of spectacle to the events. Even the panel of judges gets into the spirit by wearing cowboy hats.
A lifelong poker player and theorist, founder and head instructor Sean Hansen knows that gambling doesn’t have to be a gamble at all. Big Slick Poker Academy helps students of all skill levels—from absolute novices to experts whose grandfathers were decks of cards—learn the logic and strategy behind one of the world’s favorite card games. The keystone Red Chip introductory course is designed for beginners and experienced players who want to fix holes in their game. Over four weeks, students learn valuable skills such as basic profitable strategy, bet sizing, reading tells, and no-limit theory. BSPA also leads seminars on topics such as starting hands and basic bet sizing, offers individual pre-coaching evaluations for advanced players, and shares bare-bones fundamentals during "The Fish Bowl," a free monthly round table discussion for absolute beginners.
A kaleidoscope of colors and patterns bewilders shoppers as they enter either of Quilter’s Stash's two locations. Some confused patrons report having found the end of the rainbow, but they are really seeing more than 15,000 bolts of 100% cotton fabrics by Marcus, Henry Glass, and other top designers. Staff members wait at attention to direct customers to the latest threads and patterns, and a few on-hand wizards can resuscitate a range of sewing machines from different brands. The crafty gurus are also enthusiastic about leading quilting and sewing classes that cater to students of all levels, and the shop's shelves are stocked with how-to books that facilitate at-home learning.