Palo Alto family issues $100,000 challenge | December 7, 2012 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - December 7, 2012

Palo Alto family issues $100,000 challenge

Gift will match others' donations to the Weekly Holiday Fund

A local family has made a $100,000 donation to the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund for the second year in a row, in hopes of inspiring other donors to join them in supporting local programs for kids and families.

The gift is from a family who wishes to remain anonymous and who made a similar gift at the end of last year's holiday campaign. As a result of that donation, the Holiday Fund set a record and was able to make grants totaling $340,000.

This year's repeat donation will be used to match, dollar for dollar, the contributions of other donors.

"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 its partner, the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, absorb all the costs of the program, every dollar that is donated is distributed without any administrative expenses deducted.

In a statement accompanying the donation, the donors emphasized 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."

Over the last 19 years, the Holiday Fund has raised and distributed more than $4 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. Proceeds from the annual Palo Alto Weekly Moonlight Run, which has grown to become one of Palo Alto's largest community events, benefit the Holiday Fund.

Contributions to this year's campaign can be made online at or through the Holiday Fund donation form on page 22.

— Palo Alto Weekly staff


Posted by registered user, stephen levy, a resident of University South
on Dec 7, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Thanks to the family making the donation.

This is an awesome gift to those in need.

Posted by Wishitwasme, a resident of Fairmeadow
on Dec 7, 2012 at 5:50 pm

Wish I had the funds to be a le to do that! But it IS good to see SOMEONE giving back!

Posted by Mom by Gunn, a resident of Green Acres
on Dec 12, 2012 at 2:42 am

Maybe it's because of embarrassment or pride combination, but I knew of boys who grew up in the Palo Alto school district, unable to attend many functions, sometimes not able to pay for items like their school pictures, yearbooks, even lunches, gym clothes, etc.
Besides school, some boys were invited to a local church and told by their friends mother to go home and be sure to wear a white collared shirt and nice shoes....they didn't own a white collared shirt, tie, nor did they have any other shoes than the nice tennis shoes that they went through as they were growing up. (They did not return to their friends house.)
I am wondering if there is somewhere other kids like them could go without feeling looked down upon, ridiculed, given the "oh poor you" attitude of sympathy~ worse yet, to be looked up and down with peering eyes and judgmental snickering...
The few families were quiet about their single families situation, they did the best they could with what they had and actually had to have. They were fortunate that they didn't end up in juvenile hall for the few times they went into the movies through a side door....
There should be some place started and available for young kids to go to for incognito type of help. This money donated should not all go for administration purposes...I think it's wonderful that there are still a fortunate few in our town who have big hearts and care about the community. Please try to administer the helping hand where it is really needed....