Last-minute matching challenge for Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund

Local family pushes for more donations

For the fourth year in a row, a Palo Alto family is urging residents to step up and make gifts to the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund by pledging $100,000 of their own in matching funds.

The family, who wishes to remain anonymous, wants to inspire others to support the local programs for kids and families funded by the Holiday Fund.

Last year, a similar challenge sparked enough donations to set a record total of $390,000, which was awarded last spring in grants to local nonprofits serving children and families.

The donation will be used to match the contributions of other donors with the hope of encouraging additional giving from readers of the Weekly.

"This generous Palo Alto family believes strongly in the mission of the Holiday Fund and the efficiency with which we are able to assist many local nonprofits," Palo Alto Weekly publisher Bill Johnson said.

Since the Weekly and Silicon Valley Community Foundation absorb all the costs of the program, every dollar that is donated is distributed without any overhead or expenses deducted.

In a statement accompanying the donation, the donors stressed their desire to support local causes.

"We grew up in Palo Alto and have always appreciated the extraordinary services provided by the city, the schools and the many community-based organizations. We want to support these efforts and the Holiday Fund is a superb way to do that," they said.

Over the last 21 years, the Holiday Fund has raised and distributed more than $5 million to local nonprofits.

The Holiday Fund program has enjoyed ongoing support from the Packard and Hewlett foundations, the Peery and Arrillaga foundations and several other family foundations. The annual Palo Alto Weekly Moonlight Run, which has grown to become one of Palo Alto's largest community events, also benefits the Holiday Fund.

To make contributions to this year's campaign, go to the Holiday Fund page. The campaign runs through January.

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Palo Alto Historical Association project aims to 'ignite passion for history'

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