Hacienda Helping Hands Awards $15,000 in Impact Grants to Locally Serving Organizations

PLEASANTON, Calif. — Hacienda Helping Hands has awarded $15,000 in impact grants to three organizations providing local services: Alameda County Community Food Bank, Open Heart Kitchen and La Familia. Alameda County Community Food Bank was given a $5,000 grant which will be offered as a dollar-for-dollar match of any funds raised through Hacienda’s holiday Virtual Food Drive. Open Heart Kitchen was given a $5,000 grant in support of a new vehicle for community services. La Familia was given a $5,000 grant in support of scholarships for the Alameda County District Attorney’s Justice Academy youth program.

“Hacienda Helping Hands is pleased to make these grants to organizations making a difference in the community in important ways,” said James Paxson, Hacienda’s general manager. “We are pleased to offer our support to these initiatives as they create a means of making a meaningful difference in areas we have targeted with our initiative: addressing hunger, improving access to services for those in need and supporting youth.”

“Alameda County Community Food Bank is extremely grateful for the tremendous support we receive from Hacienda during the holidays. When Hacienda businesses and their customers donate through this Virtual Food Drive, utilizing the generous matching grant, they’ll help provide almost 23,000 meals to our neighbors struggling with the burden of hunger,” notes Michael Altfest, Communications Director, Alameda County Community Food Bank.

“The generous donation from Hacienda Helping Hands will help Open Heart Kitchen continue to provide nutritious prepared meals for our neighbors in need in the Tri-Valley community. Open Heart Kitchen depends solely on financial support from the community to keep our doors open. We were able to serve over 313,000 meals in 2014, thanks to the donations like yours and the support of volunteers who lend their time and talent to help us prepare and serve our neighbors in need,” shared Linda McKeever, Executive Director, Open Heart Kitchen.

“The District Attorney’s Justice Academy is built on strong partnerships and La Familia is excited about a new partnership with Hacienda Helping Hands. Through their contributions to this award-winning program, we will be able to provide the opportunity to seven young people in Dublin, Livermore, and Pleasanton,” Aaron Ortiz, Chief Executive Officer, La Familia Counseling Service.

About Alameda County Community Food Bank
Since 1985, Alameda County Community Food Bank has been at the forefront of hunger relief efforts in the Bay Area. This year, the Food Bank will distribute the equivalent of 28 million meals. More than half of the food distributed is farm-fresh produce. The Food Bank serves 1 in 5 Alameda County residents by distributing food through a network of 240 food pantries, soup kitchens, and other community organizations, as well as direct-distribution programs including Children’s Backpack and Mobile Pantry. For eight consecutive years, Alameda County Community Food Bank has received Charity Navigator’s top rating — Four Stars — ranking the organization among the top 1 percent of charities nationwide. Learn more at www.accfb.org.

About Open Heart Kitchen
Founded in 1995, Open Heart Kitchen’s mission is to provide prepared, nutritious meals to those in need in the Tri-Valley area (Dublin, Pleasanton and Livermore). Open Heart Kitchen offers the only hot meal service of its kind in the area. Open Heart Kitchen fulfills its mission through three basic meal programs: the hot meal program, the weekend Box Lunch program and the Senior Meal Program. Learn more at www.openheartkitchen.org.

About La Familia and the Justice Academy
The District Attorney’s Justice Academy (DAJA) is a six month learning and working experience for high school students ages 16 and up who are interested in pursuing the study of law, justice, social justice, and the courts. DAJA is a collaborative program of La Familia, the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office, and Youth Enrichment Services at Hayward Adult School, with additional funding from the Alameda County Workforce Investment Board. La Familia is an inclusive Latino community-based, multicultural organization that provides a variety of programs and services, including mental health, employment and other youth development, community programs, and substance abuse treatment and prevention. East Bay Community Services, now a division of La Familia, has been active in the Tri-Valley since 2012. Learn more at www.alcoda.org/community_outreach/justice_academy.

About Hacienda Helping Hands
Hacienda Helping Hands supports community organizations in the following six key philanthropic areas: youth development and education, family strengthening, senior assistance, access to healthcare and healthy living, affordable housing and solutions to homelessness, and arts and culture. Over the last seven years Hacienda Helping Hands has been able to distribute more than $125,000 to organizations that addressed one or more of these philanthropic areas. Past recipients include: Axis Community Health, Senior Support Program of the Tri-Valley, Buenas Vidas Youth Ranch, Open Heart Kitchen, Sentinels of Freedom, Tri-Valley Housing Opportunity Center, and many more. Learn more at www.hacienda.org/about/about-hacienda-helping-hands.

About East Bay Community Foundation
The Hacienda Helping Hands campaign is operated under the umbrella of the East Bay Community Foundation (www.eastbaycf.org), one of the largest sources of philanthropic support for the East Bay, managing more than 500 charitable funds and endowments. The East Bay Community Foundation transforms lives by harnessing financial capital, leadership and philanthropic expertise through the power of many: partnerships with individual donors, business, government, and private foundations.

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