Los Altos Community Foundation Awards $84,500 in Grants to Local Nonprofits

Los Altos Community Foundation recently awarded $84,500 in its spring 2018 grants cycle to 18 local nonprofits and programs. These organizations address the needs and improve the quality of life for seniors, youth, and vulnerable populations in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View.

The grants support nonprofit programs such as Community Health Awareness Council’s (CHAC), development of increased cultural and racial literacy by its Clinical Supervisors and interns, Parents Helping Parents’ outreach and support services to families with special needs children. And Peninsula Symphony’s popular summer pops concert in downtown Los Altos.

“LACF’s community grants help local nonprofits more effectively address community needs,” said Joe Eyre, Executive Director. “We’re proud of how these grants enable the development of new programs for greater local impact.”

LACF’s Spring nonprofit grant recipients also include:

  • Adolescent Counseling Services to support its Outlet Program serving local lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth.
  • Family Engagement Institute to fund youth field work and intern opportunities in the FEI Child Development Academy and Stretch to Kindergarten programs.
  • Festival of Lights Parade Association for annual operating expenses associated with the Los Altos Festival of Lights Parade.
  • Grassroots Ecology to support local programs integrating nature education with hands-on actions to improve the ecosystem.
  • GreenTown Los Altos to support their Safe Routes to Schools program.
  • Hope’s Corner, Inc. for access and referrals to critical services that improve the lives of the homeless and vulnerable in our community.
  • Los Altos History Museum to support the upcoming bilingual, youth-produced exhibit, “Inspired by Juana: La Donna de la Frontera.”
  • Los Altos Stage Company for expanded Mainstage productions and youth and family education programs in 2018.
  • Los Altos Village Association for purchasing cost-effective, energy-saving LED lights in the trees lining Main and State Streets and parking plazas.
  • Next Door Solutions to Domestic Violence for comprehensive services addressing the needs of 75 domestic violence survivors from local communities.
  • Peninsula Bridge to support the Peninsula Bridge Mountain View Middle School Academy that closes the achievement gap for hundreds of underserved, yet high-achieving students each year.
  • Senior Inclusion and Participation Project (SIPP) for raising awareness of the senior loneliness and isolation epidemic and to reduce its impact on elders in our local community.

 

Stretch to Kindergarten participants enjoy a recent lesson.
Stretch to Kindergarten participants enjoy a recent lesson.

“Many thanks to LACF for its generous support of the Family Engagement Institute’s Development Academy and Stretch to Kindergarten programs,” Betsy Nikolchev, Executive Director, FEI said. “The Institute is a hallmark, award-winning equity program for Foothill College, and LACF’s support will provide opportunities for our local youth to gain experience and contribute to their community.”

For more information on LACF’s grant-making programs and processes, please visit:

LACF Grant Making 

 

 

2018 Gardner Awards Dinner A Great Success

Volunteers Honored for Going Above & Beyond!

Los Altos Community Foundation’s Gardner Awards is always an anticipated community event and this year’s celebration, Above & Beyond, was no exception. A sold-out crowd of 250 community leaders, volunteers, nonprofit and business leaders, gathered at the University Club in Palo Alto on March 21 to recognize 19 dedicated volunteers from local nonprofits who selflessly give their time and talent for the benefit of our community.

Master of Ceremonies, comedian and tech entrepreneur Sean O’Kane, led the festivities with both humor and genuine appreciation for each of the honorees who were then invited to the stage to receive awards and a handshake from Los Altos Community Foundation Executive Director, Joe Eyre – as well as enthusiastic applause.

Larissa Robideaux, Executive Director for Center of Excellence in Nonprofits, provided the inspiring keynote which touched on her father’s dedication to nonprofit service and why the service one gives is the legacy one leaves.

John W. Gardner said that “True happiness involves the full use of one’s power and talent,” and that certainly rings true when realizing the many contributions of these volunteers.

The following is a list of the 19 volunteer Gardner Awards honorees along with a few words of appreciation from the nonprofits they represent:

Joan MacDonald, Community Health Awareness Council (CHAC)
“A founding parent of CHAC, Joan is CHAC’s best ambassador, always promoting CHAC’s mental health services to children and families in our community.”

Midori Adams, Child Advocates of Silicon Valley
“Midori’s care, advocacy, and consistent attention to the needs of foster youth demonstrate her deep commitment to helping children and Child Advocates.”

Phil Rose, Community Services Agency (CSA)
“Phil’s commitment to CSA, the community, and people in need make him a deserving recipient of the Gardner Award.”

Kathie Franger, Day Worker Center of Mountain View
“Kathie exemplifies and inspires what is best in the human spirit. Her passion for social justice makes her an important player in all her work supporting the Day Worker Center.”

Phyllis Dorricott, El Camino Hospital Foundation
“Phyllis is a volunteer, leader, and donor par excellence! We are grateful for her dedication to El Camino Hospital and the health of our community.”

Michelle Galbraith, Festival of Lights Parade Association
“Michelle’s outstanding efforts have enabled the Festival of Lights parade to grow and continue to delight children and adults of our community.”

Sue Gale, Friends of Deer Hollow Farm
“Sue has transformed the Friends Board and fundraising, enabling the Farm to thrive and host more than 100,000 visitors a year.”

Natalie Kataoka, Grassroots Ecology
“Grassroots Ecology proudly honors Natalie for her extraordinary service to improve our natural world – and her inspiring dedication, integrity, and kindness as a Grassroots volunteer.”

Mike Hacker, Hope’s Corner
“Hope’s Corner is grateful to Mike for his volunteer and fundraising efforts. We honor him for his passion and dedication to our mission.”

Bob Kresek, Los Altos Community Foundation (LACF)
“LACF salutes Bob for his creative and innovative ideas that always place our donors and the community at the forefront of what we do.”

Jennifer Carlstrom, Los Altos Educational Foundation (LAEF)
“Jennifer’s service on the LAEF Board and passion for public education and student advocacy has contributed greatly to the goal of achieving educational excellence in our community.”

Eleanor Watanabe, Los Altos History Museum
“As the talented, creative, and future-oriented Co-President of the Los Altos History Museum Board, Eleanor pushes the museum to embrace new possibilities.”

Nancy Williams, Los Altos Stage Company
“Los Altos Stage Company thanks and salutes Nancy for her dedication to the arts, and for supporting live theater in our community.”

Bob Adams, Mentor Tutor Connection
“Mentor Tutor Connection salutes our co-founder and tireless volunteer, Bob, for his leadership, passion and energy in growing MTC to serve all 22 public schools in Los Altos and Mountain View.”

Sharon Barkoff, Music for Minors
“Music for Minors thanks Sharon for her insight, commitment, and inspiring leadership that helped spur MFM’s growth to now reach 25,000 children in schools throughout Silicon Valley.”

Judy Crates, MVLA Challenge Team
“MVLA Challenge Team honors Judy for her very active involvement in the issues that influence children and adults in our local community. We are grateful for her time, energy and passion.”

Rachel Botsford, MVLA Scholars
“MVLA Scholars is thrilled to honor Rachel for the incredible and unwavering support, advice, love, and encouragement that she has provided to her two Scholars. She has truly changed their lives.”

Doug Kundrat, Peninsula Youth Theatre
“Peninsula Youth Theatre thanks and honors Doug for his enthusiastic leadership in transforming our set building department and his ongoing support of PYT.”

Chuck Lindauer, Rotary Club of Los Altos
“Rotary Club of Los Altos is pleased to honor Chuck, the informational technology ‘go-to’ volunteer for the club and many community nonprofits. He exemplifies our club motto: ‘Service Above Self’.“

Announcing the LACF Legacy Circle Challenge!

Legacy Circle Trees Logo

Longtime community members Claudia and Bill Coleman have offered a generous Legacy Circle Challenge:

They will match each new legacy gift to LACF before June 30th with a $500 donation.

“We believe so strongly in the work LACF is doing that we offered this challenge to inspire others to join us in leaving a permanent legacy for our community.”  – Claudia and Bill Coleman

You can help LACF realize the Coleman ’s challenge and become of member of the Legacy Circle by including LACF in your estate plan.  (If you have already done this, please let us know!).

Save the Date:

If you have already included LACF in your estate plans, or are interested in doing this, please join community leaders at LACF’s annual Legacy Circle luncheon on May 4th.  More details coming soon.

For more information on LACF’s Legacy Circle please see: or contact Joe Eyre at joe.eyre@losaltoscf.org

LACF Legacy Circle

contact Joe Eyre at joe.eyre@losaltoscf.org

E3 Program Now Accepting Applications for 2018-2019

E3 Youth Philanthropy Program members completing a service project at Deer Hollow Farm. From left to right: Jaime Villarreal, Deer Hollow Farm; Gray Tynefiled; Lauren Kiachian; Oliver Yu; Naomi Zimmerman; Kian Nikzad

 

E3 Youth Philanthropy, a program of the Los Altos Community Foundation, is now accepting applications from students entering 10th or 11th grade this fall.

E3 educates, engages, and empowers local youth to create positive change in their communities. Students who live in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills or Mountain View, and/or attend school in one of those three communities are welcome to apply.  Applications will be accepted March 1 – 30, 2018.

Apply for E3

The E3 program term is a two-year commitment. Students meet twice a month in Los Altos, from 7:00-9:00 pm, mid-August through May.

Through E3, program participants will:

  • Learn from local philanthropists about nonprofits and the positive impacts of strategic giving
  • Design and participate in service projects
  • Connect with local nonprofit organizations
  • Become effective grant-makers and deliberate funding priorities
  • Research, analyze, and advocate for potential grant recipients
  • Develop leadership and communication skills

Visit the E3 Youth Philanthropy page to learn more

E3 Students service project
E3 Youth Philanthropy Program members completing a service project at Deer Hollow Farm. From left to right: Jaime Villarreal, Deer Hollow Farm; Gray Tynefiled; Lauren Kiachian; Oliver Yu; Naomi Zimmerman; Kian Nikzad

 

2017 LACF Brunch Pictures

Thanks to all that made the 26th Annual LACF Brunch a huge success!

Special thanks to Carl Guardino, President and CEO Silicon Valley Leadership Group for his presentation on Values-Based Leadership.

We were also excited to honor long-time LACF Board Member and community leader, Dennis Young, for his many contributions.

Dennis Young and Joe Simitian

Help Napa and Sonoma fires survivors

Witnessing the devastation of the Napa and Sonoma fires, I’ve wondered how we can best help the many families who have lost everything begin to rebuild their lives.

Perhaps you’ve wondered this, too.

Just as Los Altos Community Foundation knows and addresses needs in our local community, the Napa and Sonoma Community Foundations are addressing needs in their shattered communities.

Because of their deep relationships with local nonprofits, community leaders, and government officials, community foundations are often in the best position to hold funds, make grants, and support the community over the medium to long-term during disaster recovery.

If you’d like to contribute to Napa and Sonoma Counties’ relief efforts, please consider giving to Community Foundation Sonoma County’s Sonoma County Resilience Fund and/or Napa Valley Community Foundation’s Napa Valley Community Disaster Relief Fund.

The road to recovery is long and we cannot yet predict what the greatest needs will be. But local community foundations are best positioned to vet organizations to receive funding for social support and rebuilding efforts.

And to help prepare your community for this type of disaster locally, why not become a Block Action TEAM Leader.

Support the Sonoma County Community Foundation’s Resilience Fund.

 

Napa Valley Community Foundation help Napa and Sonoma Fire survivors

Support Napa Valley Community Foundation’s disaster relief efforts.

 

Regards,

Joe Eyre, LACF Executive Director headshot, talking about Napa and Sonoma fires
Joe Eyre, LACF Executive Director

 

LACF Impact 2017

Thank you for your support of the Los Altos Community Foundation!  We’re excited to share some of the outcomes that your contribution to LACF has enabled over the past year:

 

Addressing Youth, Seniors, and Families in Need

Through its funds and programs, LACF gave $1.39 million in grants and scholarships to organizations serving Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View; a 55% increase over the previous year. These grants helped youth succeed in school, provided seniors with the care they need and enabled the homeless to feed themselves and their children.

LACF gave grants to new nonprofits, so they could launch their programs and quickly address needs in the community.  Grantees include Bay Area Furniture Bank, that gives furniture to those struggling to pay rent and EqOpTech Inc., that refurbishes computers for those who can’t afford them.

impacting the lives of students

LACF’s programs addressed numerous local needs, including:

  • MVLA Scholars gave over $400k in scholarships to 108 students, many of whom are first in their family to go to college.
  • CAFE (Center for Age Friendly Excellence), for its Los Altos Senior Inclusion and Participation Project, which identifies isolated seniors who are at risk and need services.
  • House2Home Connection, a new incubated LACF program that provides low-income families with donated household necessities for a comfortable and happy home.
  • Listos Mountain View, also a new incubated LACF program that helps immigrant families prepare for the possibility of family members being deported.
  • LACF again facilitated its common scholarship application process for local service clubs and the Mountain View Chamber of Commerce.  This group gave $131k to 72 local students.  The online common scholarship application also saved students and administrators time by submitting a single application to multiple organizations.

Improving Quality of Life in Our Community

Club 55 and Up, a fun, monthly event for adults 55 and over, attracted over 100 residents each time. Los Altos Forward, LACF’s program dedicated to promoting downtown vibrancy, created Club 55 and Up to provide local casual gatherings for older adults.

LACF’s Block Action Team (BAT) program grew to almost 200 trained BAT Leaders who help build neighbor-to-neighbor relationships and promote emergency preparedness in Los Altos.  Because of this program, the City of Los Altos recently took the lead disaster readiness by coordinating with BAT leaders as well as with county fire, HAM radio operators, and CERT (Community Emergency Response Teams).

LACF and the Los Altos School District set up an online bulletin board for community members to offer reasonably-priced housing to teachers.  As a result, five newly-hired teachers will be able to live in our community.

LACF’s Los Altos Dispute Resolution Services trained community members on conflict resolution and mediation to help resolve community issues.

Local arts and culture enhance life in our community.  LACF continuously supports local nonprofit stalwarts such as the Los Altos History Museum, CSMA, and Los Altos Stage Company.

Because of LACF’s ongoing support of the Peninsula Symphony, the community enjoys free classical music in the park every summer.

And, the Terrible Adult Chamber Orchestra (TACO) enables over 50 local musicians to regularly play together in a fun, stress-free environment.

Soil and Water, a new LACF-incubated program, teaches Mountain View apartment residents and their children how to grow vegetables in the community garden in Heritage Park. Through this process, they learn how to prepare and add more vegetables to their diet.

2016 LEAD

Transforming Community Members into Community Leaders

LACF’s LEAD class led by Claudia Coleman has graduated over 400 residents over the last 22 years, many of whom have run for and/or been on the City Council, school board, commissions, nonprofit boards, or become nonprofit leaders.

In addition, the Los Altos Town Crier recognized Claudia as “2017 Los Altan of the Year” partially for her commitment to the program.

Philanthropy never moves as fast as it does in LACF’s E3 Youth Philanthropy program. Throughout the year the 25 highly-motivated students learn empathy, values, nonprofit success factors, and grantmaking, all skills that will make them better leaders of tomorrow.

Owners of LACF Donor Advised Funds (DAFs) generously gave $730K of grants to nonprofits over the last year.  Some creatively funded new programs and causes while others granted money to their children and grandchildren so they could discover and nurture their own philanthropic passions.

Over 300 community members volunteered through LACF’s committees and programs to help make our community a better place.

To establish new community connections and educate residents about the Foundation, LACF hosted its annual Summer Solstice garden party welcoming over 300 community members – our most well-attended Solstice to date.

Inspire MV Check

Fostering Innovative New Philanthropy

Through LACF’s leadership, Google, LinkedIn, Symantec, and Synopsys joined the Inspire Mountain View initiative. The group awarded $525k in grants to make its hometown community more equitable, compassionate, and a better place to work and play.

The nine nonprofit grant winners are now helping parents struggling to feed their children, connecting seniors with their families through technology, and helping students learn about ecology, STEM, and becoming mindful leaders.

LACF sponsors 12 social-venture projects.  Through LACF, community members can start new nonprofits to address local needs without dealing with the burden of running an 501(c)(3).

Two years ago, LACF awarded a grant to MVLA Challenge Team’s Summer Learning Initiative to provide academic support programs for local at-risk students. Summer 2017 brought full program enrollment and combined morning classes with afternoon activity camps, resulting in positive academic and personal enrichment.

To further LACF’s donor-education initiatives, LACF invited Justin Steele, responsible for Google’s $50M+ U.S. philanthropy strategy, to provide insights into its innovative corporate philanthropy programs at our 25th annual LACF Brunch.

Building Resources for Our Community’s Future

Longtime community member Marguerite Szekely bequeathed LACF a $1.85 million planned gift, which LACF placed in our Community Endowment for future generations. Ms. Szekely’s gift is inspiring others in the community to include LACF in their estate plans, including the 36 generous and visionary families who are LACF Legacy Circle members honored at LACF’s annual May luncheon.

Because of you, our community is stronger, more caring, generous and engaged. Together, we’re developing the solid relationships, values, and practices that represent our world-class community.

Thanks again for your generous support. And as always, we’re continually looking to increase our impact, so feel free to email or contact me with any ideas you may have.

And as always, we’re continually looking to increase our impact, so feel free to email or contact me with any ideas you may have.

All the best,

Joe

joe.eyre@losaltoscf.org

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P.S.  Please mark your calendar for LACF’s annual brunch on Sunday, October 15th.  Our speaker is the lively and insightful Carl Guardino, CEO of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.

 

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