170K plus granted to 45 local non-profits by LACF

Los Altos Community Foundation (LACF) has completed its third grant making cycle this fiscal year,awarding 15 grants to non-profits that serve Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, and Mountain View. These project and operational grants benefit our communities in areas such as health, assisting vulnerable populations, youth, seniors, arts and culture, and community building.

The current grants support activities such as Alearn’s summer math programs for underserved youth, Acterra’ restoration work in Redwood Grove, Los Altos History Museum to support their Pedal Power

exhibit, Schola Cantorum’s Summer Sings series, and Partners for Elder Generations (PEGS) for emergency backpacks given to seniors. LACF’s Community grant program helps sustain programs at established local organizations including the Los Altos Stage Company, GreenTown Los Altos, and Partners for New Generations and new initiatives such as the web portal that will provide resources for assisting troubled teens being developed by the Sky’s the Limit Fund.

“LACF is proud of how its grants have positively benefitted the social, environmental, and economic aspects of our community,” said Joe Eyre, LACF Executive Director.

The Foundation has granted over $1.1 million to our local communities since its founding in 1991. Beginning in 2007, LACF began a re-granting program for the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. This year the Packard Foundation provided 200,000 to LACF for local re-granting.

Los Altos Community Foundation improves the quality of life in Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, and Mountain View by inspiring, facilitating, and celebrating philanthropy. The Foundation does this through grant making, programs, non-profit fiscal sponsorship, philanthropic funds, and community leadership.

For more information see losaltoscf.org or call (650) 949-5908.

Doors to stay open in Los Altos

“Door Sculpture to Talk About the Idea of Different Possibilities You May Have to Process Your Life” – more commonly referred to as “The Doors” – will be remain in Los Altos permanently thanks to the contributions of

photo (6) the community.

The brightly-colored work, displayed in Lincoln Park, was extremely popular, appreciated by many for its artistic merit and enjoyed by others as a prop in family photographs or as ‘home base’ for after-school games of hide-and-seek.

Passerelle Investment Company committed to funding $14,000 of the $28,000 purchase price if the community would fund the remainder.  The Los Altos City Council voted to contribute $7,000 and The Los Altos Community Foundation helped to secure the remainder of the funding:  Therapy, a clothing and shoe store in downtown, donated $4,000, the Los Altos Cultural Association provided $2,000 and LACF contributed $1,000.

Read more in the Los Altos Town Crier:


OR in the San Jose Mercury News:


Whole Foods Nickles for MVLA Scholars


Whole Foods Los Altos has selected MVLA Community Scholars, a program of LACF, for its “Nickels for Nonprofits” program.   From April 14 until July 6, for every bag you bring in and reuse, you will have the option to receive a 5¢ credit, per bag, or donate the 5¢ to benefit MVLA Community Scholars.

Please support  MVLA Community Scholars with your 5¢ donation!



Mesa del la Communidad funds 13 students

Mesa Photo 1 - March 2014Mesa de la Comunidad, a program of the Los Altos Community Foundation, was started in 2008 by community leaders (and brothers) Oscar and Marco Garcia.  Mesa de la Comunidad sponsors a summer scholarship program for middle school students to attend enrichment classes at the Community School for Music and Arts and KMVT Channel 15 in Mountain View.


This year, thirteen middle school students from Graham and Crittenden schools are beneficiaries of the Mesa de la Comunidad Summer Scholarship Program.  Applicants choose music or art classes at the Community School for Music and Arts or attend a class on television production at the KMVT Channel 15 studio in Mountain View. This year the Mesa program will experiment in providing a class in acting techniques and theater games to increase student comfort in volunteering for school plays and in making presentations in class.  In addition to the various enrichment classes, the students will also take a trip to the Disney Family Museum in San Francisco’s Presidio, with transportation provided by members of the Mountain View Police Department driving the police van.   For more information, please contact Patricia Fobair.  pfobair1@gmail.com  or go to the website: http://www.mesacomunidad.org/

Progress at Healing Haiti’s Grace Academy

Grace LibraryBooks for Haiti is happy to report that Grace Academy has decided to house their new library in half of the Boy’s Dormitory rather than in a used shipping container (not as bad as it sounds, but still…).  The library will initially consist of 5,000 physical books, in French, which will be delivered to them in June as part of BFH’s efforts in Haiti.  This has been a long and complicated project as previously reported, with many hands making for a great outcome.

To augment the library, and allow these students access to a virtually unlimited world of literature, BFH is seeking funding for 30 Kindles for this school.  The staff at Grace Academy, in conjunction with the organization Healing Haiti, have determined that this number of devices will allow them to supply one full classroom with Kindles at a time.  Plans have been discussed with the teaching staff as well, as to how best use this resource in their curriculum, and they are very excited at the possibility of using Kindle technology.

Our commitment to this school alone means a fundraising goal of $3,000.  While we are looking into various funding approaches, BFH is chiefly reliant on individual donors for its success.  Please consider making a real difference in the lives of these children for small donation -$100 will put a Kindle in the hands of several students each day.  Details of BFH’s complete business plan for 2014 can be found on our webpage, along with easy instructions on how to make your tax-exempt donation.   Ongoing activity can be followed on our Facebook page.  We hope to see you there!




Immigrant House on the move

Immigrant House Photo
Immigrant House Crossing Train tracks on Castro St.  Jan. 22nd, 2013 Photo by Michelle Le

Immigrant House was moved from its original location on Bryant Street to a temporary city-owned site before it moves eventually to Mountain View’s newest park at 771 North Rengstorff Avenue.  Immigrant House has lots of events coming up!  More friends and funds are needed to restore the historic house.

Apply to become a Sponsored Program


Immigrant House Events in Downtown Mountain View

• Plaza Palooza – Friday, May 2nd6:00-7:30 pm.  Free entertainment!  The Friends of the Immigrant House will be on the plaza.  Come say “Hi” and show your support.

• ‘A La Carte and Art’, May 3rd & 4th. Come see the Friends of the Immigrant House on the Plaza, 500 Castro Street.  We’ll be showing youth art projects featuring Immigrant House themes.
• Night at Morocco’s – Tuesday June 3rd6:00-10:00 pm.  Morocco’s restaurant, in downtown Mountain View, will donate 10% of all proceeds to Immigrant House.  Free entertainment, featuring music by Guided Tour.

• Plaza Palooza – Friday, June 6th6:00-7:30pm.  Free entertainment!  The Friends of the Immigrant House will be on the plaza, so come say “Hi” and show your support.


• Art display at City Hall – June 4th through June 20th .  View artwork including youth art projects featuring Immigrant House themes.


Support Los Altos Community Foundation through SV Gives on May 6 and have your donation doubled, tripled or quadrupled!

To DOUBLE, TRIPLE, or QUADRUPLE your LACF donation, contribute on May 6th by following the below instructions.

Silicon Valley Gives is a 24-hour online fundraising event for nonprofits in Santa Clara, San Mateo, and San Benito counties. It celebrates the 100th anniversary of community foundations. How it works: On Tuesday, May 6, 2014, donors can contribute to local nonprofits through a single online donation platform. A local anonymous donor has provided a $10,000 match specifically for all LACF donations contributed on May 6th as part of SVGives. In addition, other local companies and foundations are providing matches that are available to any participating nonprofit during certain hours of the day.

Want your donation doubled?

Click on the above “Donate Now” button . You can donate anytime between now and midnight of May 6th for the LACF match to apply (assuming it is not used up). How to Triple your Donation: Click on the above “Donate Now” button during the following hours on May 6th. Please do so early in the hour before the match runs out.

  •  7-8am
  •  8-9am
  •  Noon-1pm
  •  6-7pm
  •  7-8pm

How to Quadruple your Donation:

For you night owls, click on the above “Donate Now” button in the one hour period between midnight, Monday, May 5th and 1:00 am, Tuesday, May 6th. Please do so early in the hour before the match runs out. IMPORTANT – Remember that LACF is competing with many other organizations for the above SV Gives matching grants, so donate EARLY in your chosen hour to be sure you can take advantage of these matching dollars. LACF thanks you!  

Gear up for BAT training

LOSALTOSBATPURPLETitlecaseBlock Action Teams (BATs), a program of the Los Altos Community Foundation, help Los Altos residents organize their neighborhoods to be more resilient in the event of a disaster, work together for crime prevention, assist neighborhood seniors, involve neighborhood youth and organize neighborhood social events.  BATs held its first training session in January 2014. Today there are 50 registered BAT Leaders, covering 30 neighborhoods, which is approximately 9% of the households in Los Altos.  We hope that every neighborhood in Los Altos takes advantage of the benefits of this program.

BAT leaders define their neighborhood (typically 15-50 households), communicate with the residents within it and organize helpers and events. For example, a BAT leader may get the neighborhood organized to be prepared for a major disaster and learn how to respond and care for their families and neighbors. The BAT program will provide materials and training to neighborhood leaders so that these activities are easy and fun.
You or your neighborhood may already be doing one or more of these activities – but by joining the BAT program you will receive training and tools to assist with your efforts. You will also meet other neighborhood leaders doing the same thing.

Sign up today to be a BAT leader!  There is no cost to participate and attend one of the training sessions.  Co-leaders are encouraged, so you are welcome to bring a neighbor, spouse or willing assistant.

BAT leaders are required to attend one training session. The next scheduled training dates are:  April 29May 27 or July 29. Training is from 6:00 to 9:00 pm in the El Camino Hospital conference rooms.
For more information about the BAT program, click on the links below:
Los Altos Block Action Team Information


Sherie Dodsworth
Volunteer Program Director for
BAT and Los Altos PREPARE programs

LACF Board Co-chair receives “Excellence In Preparedness” award

photoSherie Dodsworth, LACF’s Board Co-chair receives the “Excellence In Preparedness” award from the Collaborative Agencies Disaster Relief Effort (CADRE). Sherie was recognized for her passion for preparedness that has motivated the residents of Los Altos to strengthen their emergency preparedness efforts, through the Los Altos Community Foundation’s PREPARE and Block Action Team (BAT) programs.

Link to blog: Sherie Dodsworth, LACF’s Board Co-chair, was honored at the ninth annual Santa Clara County disaster preparedness conference on April 9th, sponsored by the Collaborative Agencies Disaster Relief Effort (CADRE). CADRE is a program that unites community-based, non-profit organizations in disaster preparedness, response and recovery activities within the County of Santa Clara. Sherie was recognized for her passion for preparedness that has motivated the residents of Los Altos to strengthen their preparedness efforts, through the Los Altos Community Foundation’s PREPARE and Block Action Team (BAT) programs. These programs are focused on connecting neighbors and providing training to neighborhood leaders (BAT leaders) about what they can do to improve neighborhood emergency preparedness and how they can better respond to and recover from a major disaster, such as an earthquake. The BAT program hosts a monthly training session for residents who want to help their neighbors. The next session is scheduled for April 29th, 6-9 pm at El Camino Hospital Conference room. To learn more, or to sign up to attend, visit www.losaltosbat.org.