- 2013 - December - 4th -

Nonprofit News: Highlighting Jacksonville’s Philanthropic Community

from staff

As our community continues to face a tight economy and shrinking budgets, the Daily Record has established this page that will each week chronicle the efforts of local nonprofit organizations. Bailey Publishing & Communications invites all members of the local nonprofit community to submit news, announcements, success stories and any other information they believe would be of interest to our readers. Email to: nonprofitnews@baileypub.com. We encourage our readers to become more aware of the needs of these worthy organizations as they continue to provide much-needed services with reduced resources.

Celebrating with a legend

Former Jacksonville Jaguars star Tony Boselli welcomed more than 100 children to The Boselli Foundation's annual Thanksgiving dinner last week at Legends Community Center. Children enrolled in the foundation's programs, along with their families, were treated to a traditional holiday dinner sponsored by 927 Events and Bold City Brigade.

Helping food banks

The TD Charitable Foundation, the giving arm of TD Bank, presented a $30,000 donation to Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida to support its Second Harvest food bank operations. TD is donating to 33 food banks from Maine to Florida this season to help assist communities in feeding thousands. At the presentation were (from left) Mary Ellen Webb, TD Bank regional market manager; Cindy Stover, TD Bank market president; Bruce Ganger, executive director of Second Harvest; and Michael Nursey, TD Bank regional vice president.

'Festival of Lights' Saturday in San Marco

It is time once again to lace up the jingle bells on your running shoes and get ready for the 18th annual Festival of Lights 5K and 1-Mile Family Fun Run. The Children's Miracle Network Hospitals event, sponsored by Daily Billboards, is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. Saturday in San Marco Square. 

Thousands of participants are expected run or walk a route lined with more than 3,000 luminaries.

The event allows families to participate in a healthy holiday activity, while having fun with the event's signature jingle bells on their feet.

Participants and families can also take part in a Kids Zone with bounce houses, arts and crafts, music and a visit from Santa Claus.

The San Marco Merchants Association will also be hosting their "Holiday Magic" event featuring horse-drawn sleigh rides, children's bounce games, jugglers, toy soldier stilt walkers and a Christmas tree lighting.

Children's Miracle Network Hospitals is encouraging participants to pledge to raise funds for the pediatric programs at Wolfson Children's Hospital and UF Health Jacksonville. Participants can purchase a special "I Run For Kids" package, including a glow in the dark bracelet and car sticker, during registration for $10.

Register by visiting a 1st Place Sports store or online at 1stplacesports.com.

Wells Fargo grant for emergency services

Wells Fargo awarded $5,000 to Senior Life Foundation in renewed support for its emergency help line.

Foundation CEO Mari Terbrueggen called the bank's support a "blessing" because nearly 25 percent of senior citizens in Duval County live below the poverty level and often have needs that require immediate financial help.

"Because many seniors often live alone and have no family that can help, they call SLF's emergency help line," said Terbrueggen.

The help line – (904) 268-9128 – is staffed by volunteers who help seniors complete a request for assistance form over the phone. To be eligible, a senior must be 60 or older, a Duval County resident, in their own home or apartment, living on a household income of $1,000 per month for one person or $1,100 for two or more, and in an urgent situation that affects their quality of life and can be resolved quickly.

Books for students in challenged schools

For the 11th year, HandsOn Jacksonville Friday will deliver backpacks filled with books and toys to more than 7,000 elementary school children in 13 Title 1 schools.

More than 75 percent of the recipients are on a free or subsidized lunch plan, making it possible that the gifts they are given may be some of the only ones they receive during the holiday season.

For some, the books the literacy project delivers may be the first they have ever owned. Volunteers will read to students and St. Nicholas, dressed in the traditional green, gold and white after the European tradition, will visit each classroom.

Habitat for Humanity gala Dec. 14

Habitat for Humanity is offering sponsorships for the Annual Holiday Gala for Humanity, the event that kicks off the holiday season each year in St. Augustine. The gala is scheduled at 6 p.m. Dec. 14 at the Trinity Episcopal Hall.

There are several sponsorship levels available, including the Hammer and Holly ($1,000 donation) and Bolts and Bells ($500 donation). Table sponsor ($400) includes eight tickets; Independent Sponsor, a new level this year ($250) includes a line listing in the brochure with a web link. Each of the sponsorship levels includes business logo promotion and website link.

For details, call Candy Radford at (904) 826-3252, ext. 2002.

Last year, the event raised nearly $20,000 that went toward building a home for a family in need.

This year, Habitat for Humanity hopes to raise $60,000, the cost of materials for one home, with corporate sponsorships and other donations.

Habitat for Humanity of St. Johns County has helped 110 North Florida families and 20 families internationally escape the cycle of poverty housing since 1993.

For more information or to donate or volunteer, visit habitatstjohns.org or call (904) 826-3252.

Van donated to Home Again St. Johns

Nancy and David O'Byrne donated a 15-passenger van to Home Again St Johns. The vehicle will be used to transport a volunteer outreach team to areas in St. Johns County known to be inhabited by the homeless.

The O'Byrnes also contributed money to purchase fuel and insurance for the vehicle.

In October, Home Again St. Johns received a grant from The Home Depot Foundation to build a Drop-In Center at their property on Florida 207.

The center would include showers and a laundry area that the homeless can use on a weekly basis.

More than 25 volunteers from The Home Depot and Northrop Grumman will work on the site Thursday to build a deck where the showers, washer, dryer and bathroom will be installed.

The center will provide services to those living in the woods, under bridges and in their cars.

Donation of towels, laundry detergent, soap and shampoo are being accepted as well as money to cover utility costs.

To donate, contact Al Deinhart, program coordinator, at (904) 797-2691.

Rotarians deliver dictionaries

The Rotary Club of South Jacksonville continues its literacy project of purchasing dictionaries for third-grade students.

The club will be distributing dictionaries this week at San Jose, Holiday Hill, Kings Trail, Greenfield, Spring Park, Hendricks and Southside elementary schools.

"To see the delight on the faces of these children is just priceless. The one thing they always seem to ask is … 'Really? This is mine and I get to keep it?'" said Chris Bouton, chair of the Literacy Project Committee of the Rotary Club of South Jacksonville. "For many of these kids, it is their first book, and a book they don't have to return to any library."

More than 1,270 dictionaries will be distributed as part of the club's commitment to literacy and reducing the illiteracy rate in Duval County.

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