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$250,000 Donation from Air Products Foundation Kicks off Capital Campaign for the Launch Therapy Center in Denham Springs

Grant will Allow Launch to Offer Expanded Services to Exceptional Needs Children

April 1, 2024 – BATON ROUGE, La. – Air Products announced today that it has made the first donation to the capital campaign for the Launch Therapy Center, which is a nonprofit that serves hundreds of exceptional needs children in Livingston parish. Through the Air Products Foundation, the company is providing a $250,000 grant to expand Launch’s ability to serve children and families of Livingston parish.

Located in Denham Springs, the Launch Therapy Center provides a variety of outpatient therapies for children with disabilities, autism and other special needs. Launch is currently raising funds to expand the space where it offers therapy services. 

“As a company with a workforce of more than 300 people in Louisiana, we are always looking to contribute to the communities where we operate. Launch has a proven track record of success and meaningful assistance to families, and we are proud to support their future growth in a new center in Livingston Parish,” said Danna LeBlanc, Commercial Executive Director of the Louisiana Clean Energy Complex.

“There are currently 293 children awaiting services at Launch. We are grateful to Air Products for their incredibly generous donation which will enable us to expand our services to meet the tremendous need in Livingston Parish. Their support not only transforms lives but ignites hope that will inspire others to join in our efforts to help exceptional children lead extraordinary lives. We could not achieve our mission without the support of our community,” said Chantelle B. Varnado, PhD, CCC-SLP, Executive Director of Launch Therapy Center.

The grant to Launch comes from the Air Products Foundation, which supports the company’s broader philanthropic efforts. The grant is facilitated through the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, which is managing the capital campaign for Launch and helping to solicit support from other interested donors. Varnado added that if others wish to join Air Products support of Launch, they should reach out to her at chantelle@launchpeds.com, or at 225-380-1894. To learn more about the Launch project visit: https://www.soarwithlaunch.org/.

About Air Products’ Community Giving in Louisiana
Air Products supports the communities where it operates through community giving and employee volunteer efforts. In addition to grants through the Air Products Foundation, in 2023, the company launched the Air Products Lake Maurepas Community Fund, which plans to contribute $1 million per year to community projects that meet its intended mission during the duration of the operation of the Louisiana Clean Energy Complex, which is expected to be at least 25 years. Already through the Fund, Air Products has donated more than $1.1 million for worthwhile projects with the Livingston Parish Fire Protection District #2 and the Manchac Volunteer Fire Department for enhanced public safety efforts on Lake Maurepas; the Livingston Fire Protection District #2 to support its ongoing staffing needs; and for a Lake Maurepas fish restocking program managed by the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Foundation. 

The Fund supports parishes bordering Lake Maurepas by supporting needed educational, ecological, and recreational projects, with a focus on Livingston, St. John the Baptist, and Tangipahoa Parishes.

Air Products employees join Chantelle B. Varnado, Executive Director of Launch Therapy Center to present a $250,000 for the center’s capital campaign. From left to right, Danna LeBlanc, Commercial Executive Director of Air Products’ Louisiana Clean Energy Complex, Stanley Bienemy, Government Relations Manager for Air Products, Chantelle B. Varnado, PhD, CCC-SLP, Executive Director of Launch Therapy Center and Christina Stephens, Senior Communications Specialist for Air Products.

Looking forward, Air Products strives to continue its more than five-decade history of safe and responsible operations in Louisiana, both through its proposed Louisiana Clean Energy Complex currently under development and in future investments. To learn more, visit: http://Community.CleanEnergyLouisiana.com.

About the Louisiana Clean Energy Complex
Air Products is developing the Louisiana Clean Energy Complex, which will advance energy independence by creating clean energy at a blue hydrogen plant. This project is Air Products’ largest investment in the United States and will help Louisiana meet its long-term carbon-reduction goals while creating and supporting local jobs. 

The new facility will create 170 new permanent jobs with an average salary of $93,000 a year, and 2,000 construction jobs. Currently, Air Products employs 330 people in Louisiana at 18 facilities across the state, with employees actively contributing to the communities where they live and work.

For more detailed information about Air Products’ Louisiana Clean Energy Complex, please visit CleanEnergyLouisiana.com. People can also follow the project on FacebookX, and LinkedIn.