Palo Alto fund awards $300,000 in local grants

Palo Alto Community Fund celebrates 31st anniversary by launching push to expand endowment by $2 million

Supporters and founders of the Palo Alto Community Fund looked back on 31 years of grant-making in Palo Alto and looked forward to a major expansion of its funding capabilities Thursday evening.

The fund also announced that 41 local organizations will receive just over $300,000 in grants this year.

The fund also launched a campaign to push its endowment fund from its present level of about $4 million to $6 million.

"We are in and of the Palo Alto community," fund Executive Director Cammie Vail told the attendees at a reception on a balmy evening in the garden of longtime Palo Altan Bill Reller.

"We are part of this community treasure" that is Palo Alto, Vail said.

Two of the founding board members, Leonard Ely and Charles Schulz, were recognized for their long support of the fund and its mission.

Speakers representing two grant recipients, Director Curtis Haggins of the RoadRunner Sports Club of East Palo Alto and Executive Director Michelle Jackson of the Shelter Network, cited examples of how the grants aid individuals and the community.

Haggins said the club saved his own life as a youth trying to "escape the pitfalls of the East Palo Alto community" through its program of using basketball to teach young persons about life and integrity and creating elite traveling teams.

"Some of my friends didn't make it out," he said of the drug and other pitfalls.

Jackson said that "most people don't realize there are homeless families in the Palo Alto area," but the network just last week received about 2,000 calls from persons who are homeless or about to become homeless.

View full list of grant recipients.

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Like this comment
Posted by Enoch Choi
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 1, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Photos & video from last night's event:
Web Link

video of PACF Executive Director Cammie Vail
Web Link

video of grantee Curtis Haggins, President & Coach, RoadRunners Sports Club
Web Link

video of grantee Michele Jackson, Executive Director, Shelter Network

Please fan us on Facebook to receive updates on how our grants help our local community!

Enoch Choi, MD
PACF Board Member

Like this comment
Posted by Enoch Choi, MD
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 1, 2010 at 3:08 pm

video of grantee Michele Jackson, Executive Director, Shelter Network
Web Link

Like this comment
Posted by Amy Renalds
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 1, 2010 at 5:03 pm

So deeply proud to be a part of this amazing fund, working tirelessly with other community members to make this a better place for all. With the lasting effects of an endowment, we as a board are proud to launch an Endowment Campaign in order to make a greater difference. Thank you to Bill Reller for opening his home to all of us last night.

Like this comment
Posted by Catherine Crystal Foster
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 1, 2010 at 7:43 pm

The Community Fund represents all the generosity, diversity, civic engagement that makes Palo Alto such a wonderful place to live. I am honored to serve on its board and to help honor our fantastic local non-profits. If you're reading this, you care about Palo Alto, too, so please join us and help fund the future of non-profits in our community.

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