December 15, 2020
Dear Friends,

'Tis the season of giving: giving thanks, giving support, giving kindness. Throughout 2020, though the need has been great, our Community Foundation Family has risen to the challenges before us. Each day we see remarkable examples of generosity and compassion. 

I had a chance to sit down with a few of our nonprofit partners and listen first-hand to how they are creating an impact in our community. The SLO Food Bank is working with 80 partner agencies at 60 different distribution sites to provide for those that are food insecure. The San Luis Obispo County Office of Education is helping provide access to technology for students and create new avenues for special needs students that require hands-on learning. Downtown, the SLO Children's Museum has been closed since March, but they have supported our youth by creating 2,800 Busy Boxes for kids of all ages. These organizations and all of our nonprofit partners are dedicated to making a difference in our community. 

I deeply appreciate our remarkable donors - their dedication, thoughtfulness and patience is truly wonderful as we continue to adapt to the changing landscape.

During this month of reflection, gratitude and giving, I want to remind you that we simply cannot do our work without you. Your support makes a lasting difference for those in need across San Luis Obispo County. Together, we are changing lives! Thank you for your continued support. Happy Holidays and best wishes for a healthy 2021!

With gratitude,

Heidi H. McPherson
Chief Executive Officer
Year End Giving
Give Back • IRA Charitable Rollover

If you are looking for ways to give back this month, learn more about how an IRA Charitable Rollover may be an option for giving now with tax benefits. For more information on how to give, contact us at 805-543-2323.

Spotlights and Highlights
Increased Funding for Our Grants Program

In addition to awarding more than $504,000 to date in grants from our Disaster Support Fund, we are proud to announce that our Board of Directors has made an unprecedented allocation of an additional $500,000 in grant funding to support our region’s nonprofits during this difficult time.

The General Grant Program applications are now available to our nonprofit partners and will be due on January 15, 2020, at 5pm. The online application can be accessed here. Unless otherwise mentioned within the grant application, all grants will be unrestricted. Grants support a wide range of areas such as: environment, seniors and people with disabilities.

As a reminder, we continue to accept grant applications for Disaster Support Fund grants to support nonprofits within San Luis Obispo County who are providing aid to our most vulnerable residents. To make a contribution to support this fund, click here.

Grant Opportunities
Story of Impact

El Camino Homeless Organization (ECHO) is a 50-bed transitional and emergency shelter located in Atascadero and serving all San Luis Obispo County residents. ECHO provides three months or more of shelter, giving clients the time, safety, and support needed to stabilize or increase income and find permanent housing. On average about 15 children per day are living in the shelter, ranging in age from infants to 18 years old.

Due to the pandemic, children at the shelter are participating in classes remotely, staying at the shelter all day and using laptops for distance learning. However, they also need an in-person adult to assist them with their schoolwork and their technology use. Most parents are either working, looking for work, or are not able to help their child with schoolwork.

In September the Foundation awarded a $5,000 Disaster Support Fund grant to support an “Educational Aide” position for two months to help children to stay on track with their school work. In addition to academic schoolwork, the Educational Aide organizes physical education activities and interactive learning opportunities to create fun and energizing activities for the children throughout the day.

Celebrating Retirement

We are pleased to share the news that longtime Senior Scholarship Program Associate Angela Hollander has retired. Angela has been a hardworking Community Foundation team member since January 2008 and helped to develop our scholarship program over the years. Thanks to her leadership, The Community Foundation has provided scholarship support to thousands of students.

Angela has built cooperative relationships with students, their families, community groups, local nonprofits, high school guidance counselors and administrators, college officials, and other members of the community. The Foundation Staff, Board of Directors and community volunteers wish her all the best in her well-earned retirement!

Important Dates
Available Now: General Grants Applications Available
Available Now: Scholarship Applications Open
January 14, at 4 pm:
Happy Hour with Heidi featuring One Cool Earth
January 15, at 5 pm: General Grants Applications Due 
February 7, at 11:59 pm: Scholarship Applications Due
February 11, at 4 pm:
Happy Hour with Heidi featuring SLO Botanical Garden
You can make a difference!
The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County is a grantmaking and education foundation that provides support to charitable organizations throughout our county. For more than 20 years, the Foundation has provided nearly $30 million in grants and scholarships and our charitable assets under management have grown to over $65 million, and provide support to all aspects of our community in perpetuity. For further information or to donate to any fund, please call 805-543-2323.
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The Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County
550 Dana Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

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