At the Leo Buscaglia Foundation we are proud to be carrying on the life principles of our founder by making grants to small but highly effective non-profit organizations that are fostering the spirit of giving in their communities.
It is with great pride that we share a list of the Foundation’s most recent awardees in 2015 – eighteen organizations received grants totaling $85,000! Our grants are relatively small, but each grant is meaningful to an organization working on the ground with those who are in need. Please see the enclosed 2015 Grant Recipient Summary.
“It is better to give than to receive.” Leo firmly believed in and lived by the principle of giving back. He felt his good fortune should be used to help others to improve the quality of life in their communities. Organizations with lean budgets and a core volunteer or mentoring component were of particular interest. We at the Leo Buscaglia Foundation are proud to be associated with the organizations we helped fund in 2015.
On behalf of the board and staff, thank you for your interest and past generosity. As you consider charitable giving this holiday season, we hope that you will include the Leo Buscaglia Foundation in your plans. With your help, we will continue to spread Leo’s legacy and to support the good works of organizations that are providing exceptional service to their communities.
Best wishes for the season,
Jennifer M. Mennell
Leo Buscaglia Foundation
2015 Grant Recipients
Boys Hope Girls Hope of Southern California – Irvine, CA. Received a grant to support the health, human services and educational programming that Boys Hope Girls Hope provides which aims to make the children they serve “men and women for others”. The mission of Boys Hope Girls Hope is to help academically capable children in need reach their full potential by providing value centered family-like homes, opportunities and education through college. Boys Hope Girls Hope also received a grant from the Leo Buscaglia Foundation in 2012.
C5 Youth Foundation of Southern California (C5LA) – Los Angeles, CA. Received a grant to support their Youth Leadership and College Preparatory Program. The mission of C5LA is to inspire high-potential youth from risk-filled environments in Los Angeles County to pursue personal success; to prepare them for leadership roles in college, work and the community; and to motivate them to become role models for others.
Craft & Folk Art Museum – Los Angeles, CA. Received a grant to provide weekly free admission to the Craft & Folk Art Museum (CAFAM). The weekly, free Sunday tickets would be advertised in the low income schools and communities that they serve. The goal is to remove barriers to arts access for these low-income populations. The mission of CAFAM is to engage people through its diverse exhibitions and programs that challenge established ideas about craft and folk art. They empower people to make their own creative and social contributions to the world. CAFAM also received a grant from the Leo Buscaglia Foundation in 2012.
Festival Ballet Theatre – Fountain Valley, CA. Received a grant to continue to expand its outreach by supporting all performances and their community and education outreach programming over the current 2015 fiscal year. The mission of Festival Ballet is to present works that epitomize the artistry of professional ballet, offering cultural awareness of dance through educational programs and nurturing a creative environment for choreographers and some of Orange County’s most talented dancers.
Homework House – Azusa, CA. Received a grant to advance the volunteer spirit at Homework House by supporting the volunteer training, development and education program, the parent leadership training program and the volunteer service component of the student mentoring and tutoring programs. The mission of Homework House is to partner with parents of at risk Azusa youth to provide the tools to thrive academically and socially. Homework House also received a grant from the Buscaglia Foundation in 2012.
Italian American Museum of Los Angeles – Los Angeles, CA. Received a grant for their Fall of Freddie the Leaf Peer Support and Art Therapy Group. The group will provide assistance in the form of peer support group meetings, yoga, art therapy workshops, etc, to youth who have experienced loss. The mission of the Italian American Museum of Los Angeles is to foster understanding of Southern California’s diverse heritage through research, historic preservation, exhibitions and educational programs that examine the history and continuing contributions of Italian Americans in multi-ethnic Los Angeles and the United States.
The Jester & Pharley Phund – Palos Verdes Estates, CA. Received a grant to bring their Reading Makes a Difference program to two low-income schools in Southern California. The mission of the Jester & Pharley Phund is to inspire charity and empower children facing serious challenges – both educational and medical – by sharing the universal message of hope and caring in the award-winning illustrated children’s book “The Jester Has Lost His Jingle.” The Reading Makes A Difference program inspires a love of reading among children from low-income families while helping them develop compassion for others.
Kids Konnected – Laguna Hills, CA. Received a grant to fund 20 support group participants in their annual, two night, Youth Leaders Retreat. The mission of Kids Konnected is to provide friendship, understanding, education and support for youth who have a parent with cancer or who have lost a parent with cancer. Kids Konnected serves youth experiencing feelings of isolation, depression and anxiety as a result of the tumult of a parent’s cancer diagnosis, treatment and sometimes death. Kids Konnected also received a grant from the Buscaglia Foundation in 2009.
Kids for Peace – Carlsbad, CA. Received a grant to bring The Great Kindness Challenge – School Edition to approximately 10,500 new students in 10 low-income, underserved and at-risk schools in the Southeast San Diego neighborhood. Kids for Peace is a San Diego based nonprofit organization dedicated to uplifting our world through love and action. They strive to cultivate every child’s innate ability to foster peace through cross-cultural experiences and hands-on arts, service and environmental projects.
Levitt Pavillion – Greater Los Angeles and Pasadena – South Pasadena, CA. Received a grant for core operating support. The mission of Levitt Pavillion is “Community Through Music.” They make live music accessible to all, create stronger and more connected communities, celebrate the diversity of cultures and promote appreciation of the arts through 100 free concerts each year at two venues, one in Pasadena’s Memorial Park and one in MacArthur Park in Los Angeles.
Lipstick Angels – Los Angeles, CA. Received a grant to increase the hours of their administrative staff members from part-time to full time, website development, volunteer training and professional development and program expansion. The mission of Lipstick Angels is to provide high quality beauty support services to restore and strengthen the dignity, hope and self-esteem of cancer patients. They strive to create an environment that fosters kindness, empathy and support that nourishes the mind, body and spirit and contributes to recovery.
Mar Vista Family Center – Culver City, CA. Received a grant to support their By Youth For Youth Sustainable Model Program. Mar Vista Family Center’s mission is to provide low-income families with quality early childhood education, youth enrichment and education tools to create positive change in their lives and their community. The Mar Vista Family Center also received a grant from the Buscaglia Foundation in October 2013.
Nurtured by Nature – Valley Center, CA. Received a grant to provide Animal Encounters and Otter Swim programs, offered free of charge to families with seriously and terminally ill children, at-risk children and teens and foster youth in San Diego, Riverside Orange and Los Angeles counties. Nurtured by Nature is dedicated to fostering hope and well-being to children with life threatening or terminal illness, promotes a healthy life outlook and healing for children who have suffered severe emotional trauma and inspires a bond between humans and animals through physical interactions with nature.
Orange County Food Access Coalition – Santa Ana, CA. Received a grant to hire a part time Volunteer Coordinator. The mission of OC Food Access Coalition is to create access to healthy, local food options for Orange County’s most nutritionally vulnerable residents while creating systems change that results in nutritious, affordable and culturally appropriate foods for all residents in their community. OCFAC is a fiscally sponsored project of OneOC (formerly Volunteer Center of Orange County).
Piece by Piece – Los Angeles, CA. Received a grant to fund workshop activities serving residents of Star supportive housing apartments in Skid Row. The funds will be used to pay Artist-Instructors leading Community and Workshop activities and to fund Studio Prep Associate positions. The mission of Piece by Piece is to empower residents of under-served communities in urban Los Angeles through training workshops in mosaic technique that enable recently homeless and low-income individuals to develop marketable skills and self-confidence as well as a path to earned income. Piece by Piece also received a grant from the Leo Buscaglia Foundation in 2011.
Teen Line – Los Angeles, CA. Received a grant for general operating support which will be utilized to support all components of their program including training, outreach and their hotline. Teen Line was established in 1980 to help troubled teenagers in a way they would accept: teens helping teens. Their mission is to provide personal teen-to-teen education and support before problems become a crisis, using a national hotline, current technologies and community outreach.
Wellspring Women’s Center – Sacramento, CA. Received a grant to provide general operating support for their Nutritious Meal Program, Children’s Corner Program, Safety Net Support Program and Women’s Wellness Program. The mission of Wellspring is to “nourish the innate goodness and personal self-esteem of women and their children, providing respite and services in an atmosphere of hospitality with dignity and love.”
YES for Schools/IAHV – San Francisco, CA. Received a grant to fund the YES! Beginner Program to 120 students (grade 4-8), 15 teachers and 50 parents at Escuela Popular Charter School in San Jose. YES for Schools is a San Francisco based program of the International Association for Human Values (IAHV). IAHV is a humanitarian NGO that is committed to developing and promoting programs of personal development that encourage the practice of human values in everyday life. Youth Empowerment Seminar (YES!) for Schools is an educational and youth development initiative of IAHV. It empowers students to reach their full potential by teaching them concrete tools to clear their mind, sharpen their focus, expand their comfort zone and constructively confront challenges. IAHV/YES! for Schools also received a grant from the Leo Buscaglia Foundation in 2011.