BAFTX at the polo.....

The British American Foundation of Texas was invited to host a booth at the 2018 Women’s Polo Championship in Houston Texas on November 10th. Despite a last minute change of venue to Brookshire due to lots of Texas weather in the week preceding the event, BAFTX set up its stall (including a very British cocktail, a raffle for ladies lunch tickets and many packets of Polo mints to give away - yes, really!) at the beautiful Brookshire Polo Club.

The polo was fast and furious, the guests were interesting and charming and BAFTX hopes to participate in other (maybe warmer) polo events in Houston in the future.

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Junior Achievers 2018 - they're back!

Our 6 intrepid Junior Achievers spent two weeks in the UK this July and had the most incredible time.  They visited Portsmouth, Windsor, Oxford, Brighton and Stonehenge .... as well as Althorp Estate, Westminster Abbey, Houses of Parliament, Tower of London, Tate Modern, the Globe Theater (to see Hamlet), Eton College, Imperial War Museum, Southbank Center, the London Eye and finally the British American Business Council for a talk on Brexit.  Not bad for 12 days....

Our student attend a British Studies Summer program hosted by ACS International Schools.  This program is in its 20th year and welcomes 20 students a year from across the USA. BAFTX is the only Texas-based organization that participates in this program.

Thanks to our donors, we are able to ensure that no student has any financial outlay for this scholarship.  BAFTX funds travel, transfers, accommodation, entry fees, passport fees etc.  Our scholars come from very low income households and it's important that this program is accessible to those who deserve it the most.

For anyone with the slightest doubt as to the incredible value of this program, read what our Junior Achievers say here.  

Ngoc, one of this year's Junior Achievers told us "the biggest takeaway was certainly that I can excel at being independent. This trip has been life-changing not only that I was seeing pretty sights around me but it was more confidence in myself and my abilities to rise above my insecurities and self-consciousness. My future feels brighter and I feel brighter."

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That's how you celebrate a Royal Wedding in style!

The British American Foundation of Texas certainly pulled out all the stops for a Royal Wedding Watch Party on May 19 as Prince Harry married Meghan Markle.

200 guests attended the festivities at the Royal Oaks Country Club.  They enjoyed brunch and mimosas while they watched the wedding on big screens, followed by a toast to the newlyweds from Her Majesty's Consul Karen Bell, a round of royal bingo, royal trivia, a hat competition and raffle prizes.  The photobooth was a hit (especially the cardboard royals in attendance and inflatable corgis) and guests took home their own branded mugs.

Guests were delighted with the event and Fox26 was present to show the rest of the USA what it was missing out on!

Photos from the event are here.

 

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BAFTX Awards 2018

On April 24 the British American Foundation of Texas held its annual Awards Ceremony at the Federal Reserve in Houston.

Benefactors flew in from as far afield as Baltimore and the UK to present awards to our 2018 scholars.

Her Majesty's Consul General, Karen Bell, welcomed guests and gave a brief outline of the work carried out by BAFTX and why it is so vital for the future of our communities.  Lizi Xiong, BAFTX Award Winner 2016 spoke about her experience of the Junior Achiever program and how it completely changed her perspectives and ambitions.  Jesús Terrones, Product and Service Delivery Manager at Cameron, military veteran, West Point graduate and Harvard MBA graduate gave a very personal and inspiring speech that made a great impact on both scholars and benefactors alike.

Benefactors from British Airways, British American Business Council, Bracewell LLP, ConocoPhillips, Crestwood Equity Partners, Direct Energy, Enterprise Products Partners, ExxonMobil, Hakluyt, King and Spalding, Phillips 66, TD Securities, Vepica, and Wood Mackenzie presented awards to students from Texas A&M, University of Houston, University of Texas, Houston Community College, Houton Baptist University, Texas Women's University, South Plains College, KIPP Generations Collegiate, Eastwood Academy, Westside High School, De Bakey High School, Bellaire High School and Renaissance Academy

As one recipient of a college scholarship noted: "The generosity of the benefactors of this amazing opportunity has granted me with the possibility to grow and share what I have learned with my community. I amsure that this experience will prepare me to become a useful asset to society and in the future to be abelt to return the generosity bestowed on me to future generations."

More photos of the evening may be viewed here.

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Wine Women and Song 2018

BAFTX held its annual Wine Women and Song event on February 24th at the Junior League of Houston.  We and our guests had a fantastic time, enjoying champagne, delicious food, fantastic tombola and raffle prizes, great speeches and the awesome entertainment provided by the Fab Five.  Even Prince Harry made an appearance for photos and ended up leading the conga at one point.....

Most importantly however, it raised funds for the Foundation, providing college scholarships for gifted and underprivileged students in Texas.

Photos are available here.

Starry Knight Gala

The British American Business Council of Houston held its Starry Knight Gala benefiting the British American Foundation of Texas on November 11 at the Westin Oaks Hotel.  440 guests enjoyed an evening of "feasting and merriment" including a cocktail reception, dinner, speeches, live and silent auctions, raffles, wine pull, live music and a couple of surprises including confetti and pipers.  The event had a real "New Year's Eve" feel to it and raised $247 000 for the education of gifted and talented students from underprivileged households in Texas.

The British American Foundation of Texas announces new Executive Director

The Board of BAFTX are delighted to introduce new Executive Director, Kay Thomson.

Kay is a British citizen who has been living in Houston, Texas for the past 3 years. She has worked in higher education in the UK, both academically and in management, as well as chairing a non profit for several years in Singapore. Most recently she worked as a consultant for Scotland's Robert Gordon University, taking care of their marketing, alumni and college transfer activities in Houston. As someone who has studied and worked overseas herself, Kay is keen to continue the invaluable contribution that BAFTX has made over the past 10 years, to ensure that many more students can reap the benefits that education, overseas travel and study bring.

Please feel free to contact Kay if you have any questions. kay.thomson@baftx.org

BAFTX Awards 2017

On April 24 the British American Foundation of Texas held its annual Awards Ceremony at the Federal Reserve in Houston.

26 awards were presented, bringing together benefactors from as far afield as New York and Baltimore with the brightest academic stars of Texas. 

Her Majesty's Consul General, Karen Bell, welcomed guests and gave a brief outline of the work carried out by BAFTX and why it is so vital for the future of our communities.  Ziba Colah, BAFTX Award Winner 2016 and student of Biochemistry and Biophysics at University of Houston spoke about how the award has changed her life and her future plans for a medical career.  De Matthew Ware, originally from Swansea but currently researching nanotechnology and its medical applications at Baylor, was the keynote speaker.  

Benefactors from ConocoPhillips, Phillips 66, Hess Corporation, Williams Companies, British Airways, Enbridge Inc, Enterprise Products Partners, ACS International Schools Wood Mackenzie, TD Securities, British American Business Council, King and Spalding, FWB Park Brown and Faithful+Gould presented awards to students from Texas A&M, University of Houston, University of Texas, Houston Community College, Houton Baptist University, KIPP Generations Collegiate, Northside High School, Cesar Chavez High School, Carnegie Vanguard High School and Wharton Dual Language K-8 Academy.

It was also the occasion to present the inaugural Susan Howard Community Service Award for future philanthropists and those who put the needs of their community first.

As one recipient of a college scholarship noted: “This scholarship will serve as a motivator for me moving forward to continue working hard and to always push forward”

More photos of the evening may be viewed here.

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Junior Achievers 2017

BAFTX's six Junior Achievers for 2017 have been selected. 

In July, Charity, Chastity, Da'Triana, Gabriela, Natalie and Robert will head off to London where they will benefit from a busy schedule of visits and tours, taking in the highlights that the capital city has to offer, learning about British culture, politics and history.  In addition, they will become more independent, more confident and gain a more global vision of the world, understanding the benefits that travel and experiencing other cultures can bring.  Our 2017 Junior Achievers are smart and ambitious .... we will certainly be hearing more from them as they embark on their adventure this summer.

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