Sat10252014

Community

LACF accepting grant applications

The Los Altos Community Foundation is accepting grant applications through Sept. 23.

The foundation’s Community Grants Program supports nonprofit organizations and activities that directly serve Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and surrounding areas.

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Volunteers support fight against spinal disease


Courtesy of Marge Shively
Volunteers supporting Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy include, from left, Annemarie Rosengreen, Jane Halligan, Nancy Traficanti, Judy William, Irene Ogowa (in back), Don McCauley and Nancy Cook.

For the past 13 years, local friends have gathered for an annual “stuffing party” to prepare mailings in support of fundraisers for the nonprofit Families of Spinal Muscular Atrophy (FSMA). The most recent mailing promotes the 12th annual Northern California Walk-n-Roll Aug. 23 in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park.

According to FSMA representatives, SMA is the leading genetic killer of children under 2. The disease destroys the nerves that control voluntary movement. Children born with SMA may never crawl, walk or even lift their heads.

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Writing project seeks next great author

The Santa Clara County Library District, which includes the Los Altos main and Woodland libraries, has joined forces with JukePop Inc. and Black Hill Press to promote writing and reading with the launch of the Summer Writing Project.

A collaborative effort to identify up-and-coming literary talent, the Summer Writing Project provides aspiring authors the opportunity to create novellas (written, fictional narratives normally longer than a short story but shorter than a novel) and submit them one chapter at a time for immediate quantitative and qualitative feedback from readers.

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Local residents visit Congress to promote mental health awareness


Courtesy of Liz Semion
Among those lobbying for mental health awareness on Capitol Hill are Los Altos residents Liz Semion, second from left, and her daughter, Vanessa Verea, second from right. The pair and other advocates flank Massachusetts Congressman Jim McGovern, third from right.

Los Altos residents Liz Semion and her daughter, Vanessa Verea, addressed members of Congress last month with high hopes.

Aiming to raise awareness of troubled youth with mental health issues, the mother-daughter pair and members of the National Association of Therapeutic Schools and Programs (NATSAP) sat down with several members of Congress June 19 on Capitol Hill.

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Volunteer from Holland returns to Hidden Villa


Laurie Aubuchon/Special to the Town Crier
Marjoleine de Waal, pictured with a four-legged Hidden Villa friend, said she finds volunteering at the Los Altos Hills farm and preserve “so rewarding.”

Marjoleine de Waal, a volunteer farm tour guide for two years at Hidden Villa, teaches schoolchildren about the 1,600-acre nonprofit organic farm and preserve in Los Altos Hills.

“It’s not every day you can show children where wool comes from,” said de Waal, 53, born and raised in Holland. “It’s so rewarding that (the children) enjoy themselves.”

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Rotary conference boosts financial knowledge in high school juniors


Jerry Tomanek/ Special to the Town Crier
Arley Marley organizes the Rotary Club’s Enterprise Leadership Conference to encourage creativity, resourcefulness and drive among local high school students.

For three decades, high school juniors participating in the Rotary Club’s Enterprise Leadership Conference have built virtual companies.

Launched, supported and funded by Rotary Clubs in San Jose, Los Gatos and Oakland, the annual three-day conference emphasizes teamwork, confidence building and friendship.

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