Lending a much-needed helping hand to those in crisis and strengthening our community have always been the aims of the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund. Now in its 30th year, the annual charitable giving drive is kicking off this week with a goal of raising $600,000 to support local nonprofits that serve children, families and individuals.
Donations from community members will enable Palo Alto-area service organizations to send deserving teens to college, bridge educational gaps, put hot food in hungry stomachs, aid people with disabilities, step in with critically needed services and more.
Every cent of every donation will go to these community agencies because the Palo Alto Weekly and its Holiday Fund partner, the nonprofit Silicon Valley Community Foundation, are absorbing all administrative costs to run the fund. All donations are tax-deductible.
Last year the Holiday Fund gave a record-setting $773,000 in grants to 77 organizations, bringing the fund's total to almost $9 million raised and distributed over its history.
This year, as in years past, generous matching grants from local foundations, including the Packard, Hewlett, Peery and Arrillaga foundations, are doubling each Holiday Fund contribution. A donation of $100 turns into $200 with the foundations' matching gifts.
"It gives us great joy to connect donors with grantees so that so much good work can be done to make lives better," said Bill Johnson, president of the Embarcadero Media Foundation and founder of the Palo Alto Weekly.
For more information about the Holiday Fund, and to read about the impact of agencies that received grants this past year, go to PaloAltoOnline.com/holidayfund. To give a donation online, go to embarcaderomediafoundation.org/holiday-fund/palo-alto. Checks can be made payable to Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund and sent to 450 Cambridge Ave., Palo Alto 94306.
The Holiday Fund campaign will run through early January. Grants will be awarded to select nonprofit organizations in the spring.
• Read about one Holiday Fund agency, the Bay Area Friendship Circle, and the impact it's having on kids with special needs and their families.