Fred Amis and the Amis Family Foundation

Working backwards to give back.

For its first few years, the Amis Family Foundation focused its giving on traditional donations to established charities. But the more Fred Amis became involved in philanthropy, the more he wanted to try something different.

Fred wanted to focus on specific, urgent problems – like the need for new immigrants to integrate into society – and then find the most effective ways to help. He brought his desire to the Omaha Community Foundation, which hosts and administers his family foundation, and, together, we developed a plan.

The Foundation staff helped Fred thoroughly research immigrant culture in Omaha. Through focus groups with first- and second-generation immigrants, it became clear that learning English and finding a job were key to successfully joining Omaha society.

So Fred’s family, with the help of other Foundation donors, established a program at Metropolitan Community College where Spanish-speaking immigrants can learn English while also learning a trade. Eight people have completed the program so far, and a new class starts this fall. “It’s a work in progress,” Fred says.

Work. Progress. Two of our favorite things.

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