Palo Alto Weekly's Holiday Fund kicks off

Annual fund drive raises money for local nonprofits

The annual Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund drive kicks off this week, with the goal of raising and giving away $250,000 to local nonprofits serving children and families.

"As we begin the fourth Holiday Fund since the start of the Great Recession, it is heartening that our readers continue to step up and support this grass roots community fundraising effort," said Bill Johnson, Palo Alto Weekly publisher and president of Embarcadero Media, the Weekly's parent company.

"The needs of the less fortunate in our community continue to grow, and we should all be grateful for the work our nonprofit organizations do to provide a safety net in difficult times," he said. "The Holiday Fund is a great way for those who can afford it to express their appreciation for this important work."

In 2010-2011, the fund raised and distributed $230,000 from more than 400 donors and made 44 grants, mostly to groups in Palo Alto and East Palo Alto. Grants ranged in size from $500 up to $25,000.

The Weekly Holiday Fund is a partnership with Silicon Valley Community Foundation. The Packard and Hewlett foundations are supporting the campaign with matching grants totaling more than $50,000.

People may donate to this year's Holiday Fund online through One hundred percent of all donations raised go to the selected organizations, which will be chosen in April.

The campaign runs through early January 2012.


Like this comment
Posted by Patty Kenney
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 11, 2011 at 10:25 am

Thank you Bill Johnson, and your staff at the Palo Alto Weekly for organizing this annual effort, vetting the grant applications, partnering with SVCF, and bringing the resources of the Packard and Hewlett Foundations and the generosity of Holiday Fund contributors to the local non-profits. The Holiday Fund grant has enabled St. Elizabeth Seton School to continue providing an after school Athletics Program for girls and boys in grades 4-8th. This is the first time many of our students, who live in under resourced communities, have had the opportunity to experience and participate in competitive athletics. The Athletics Program allows participants to learn valuable life lessons and experience achievement outside the classroom.

Like this comment
Posted by Nora Charles
a resident of Stanford
on Nov 11, 2011 at 7:42 pm

A very worthwhile endeavor. Best of luck in reaching this year's goal.

It would be wonderful if you might consider adding one or two non-profit animal groups to the list of recipients. These shelters have been hard hit by the economy, as well as an increase in owners forced to surrender dogs, cats, and other pets. They do not receive any government funding and would be most appreciate of any contributions. Many thanks.

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