SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Happenings – September 2014

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Adopt a Family shoppers and wrappers from Unit 49; photo courtesy of Marge Wong.

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Adopt a Family shoppers and wrappers from Unit 49; photo courtesy of Marge Wong.

Adopt-a-Family 2014

Ken and Ellen Perkins

Despite the fact that it is only September, it’s time to begin thinking about Christmas! To be more specific, it’s time to start preparing for the SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Adopt a Family project. Many of our neighbors are suffering in communities with very high unemployment rates. Unfortunately, many communities north of SaddleBrooke continue to suffer from high unemployment which severely impacts the lives of children living in the area. With unemployment near 80% on the San Carlos Reservation, Apache Indian children are also severely impacted. SBCO Adopt a Family tries to brighten the lives of children in the Tri-community area (Mammoth, San Manuel and Oracle) and the San Carlos Indian Reservation. Your continued help and generosity are needed more than ever to help make a difference in the lives of some very needy children.

Last year the SBCO Adopt a Family project provided gifts for 110 families in the Tri-Community area. It also provided gifts for 250 Apache children on the San Carlos Reservation. If your unit wasn’t involved last year, but would like to participate this year, please call for additional information. It’s fun and very rewarding! There is no overhead charge for this project so 100% of gifts and cash donations go to needy families and children. SaddleBrooke Community Outreach is a 501 (c) (3) not for profit organization. Tax I.D. No. 86-0843458. All gifts are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law. Contributions to SaddleBrooke Community Outreach are also eligible for the Arizona Tax Credit for contributions to Charities that Provide Assistance to the Working Poor. Contact your Tax Advisor for advice on your specific tax situation.

We would like to invite any and all of you to join us in this worthy cause. Besides donations we also need all the help we can get. The Adopt-a-Family project has more than doubled in the last six years and we always have a great need for last minute shoppers and wrappers. We think you will find shopping with a friend for the things that the children have requested can be both fun and rewarding. Please join us in this journey which is guaranteed to fill you with the holiday spirit!

We are out of town for the summer but please let us know if you can help. You can reach us by email at ellenkenperkins@gmail.com or by cell phone,  520-300-1092.

Measuring for new shoes

Measuring for new shoes

What is Kids’ Closet?

Nan Nasser

On Monday, October 13, SaddleBrooke Community Outreach will host a general program on Kids’ Closet. This will take place in the MountainView Ballroom beginning at 3:00 p.m.

Co-chairmen Judy Williams and Anni Evans will go over the organizational part of the closet, will share a few stories about past experiences and will have photos and handouts to complete the program. These two women have now visited every school in our service area to arrange for eligible kids to come to the closet with specific dates on the calendar. Operations manager Melanie Stout will join them providing additional information.

Judy has commented on the positive feedback from schools like those on the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation. Parents are taking a greater role in the children’s education, participating in school activities and the kids are responding with better grades and attitudes.

Come and learn about the closet, opportunities to work directly with the children or to help in a supportive role with the stocking and sorting of clothes, books or toiletries. We serve children in 20 schools (eight districts) from Coronado in Catalina up to Superior and across to the San Carlos Reservation. That is a 100 mile service area in three counties.

The closet began in 1997 by supplying clothes to 385 children in a San Manuel elementary school. Last year over 3000 wardrobes were distributed to needy elementary school children in our service area. Children are selected by school administrators based on need, are generally bussed to the closet in Mammoth where volunteers work one-on-one to help each child select a seasonal wardrobe that includes three pair of pants and shirts, sneakers, six pair of sox and underwear, hygiene items, two books and in the fall the wardrobe includes a windbreaker and knitted hat. All clothing is new!

Not only will you learn about the closet, but you can register for the Walkathon at this meeting and you can buy a raffle ticket to win a 2014 Jeep Cherokee. Basha’s Community Support Cards will be available. You can join SBCO by registering your membership. Would you like more information about us? Go to our website: www.community-outreach.org.

Area youth attend water safety classes.

Area youth attend water safety classes.

Education committee visits summer programs

Nan Nasser

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach, Inc. supports summer enrichment programs for area youth and members of the education committee went to visit the children at work.

Swimming lessons have long been supported in San Manuel. Youngsters learn how to be safe in water; the program runs for eight weeks and benefits 160 youngsters.

College for Kids at the Aravaipa Campus of Central Arizona Community College offers a two week program each summer, always with a different emphasis. This year was about food, and children learned how to grow and store food as well as learned about specific properties of some food items. The 40 participants range from second to sixth grade and also include older students as classroom aides.

Both of these provide educational and developmental opportunities for youngsters in the summer months. In addition, SBCO supported a reading program in the Kearny area, the Triangle Y camp in Oracle and a remedial course at Mammoth Elementary School.

Now, it’s back to school!

You could win a car!

Nan Nasser

The raffle is coming to a close. You have a limited time to buy a ticket and a limited number of tickets are still available.

The Jim Click Automotive Team is offering a 2014 Jeep Cherokee as a raffle prize that benefits local 501c3 charities in the greater Tucson area. SaddleBrooke Community Outreach is one of those charities and has a limited number of raffle tickets. This 2014 model has a new design and better gas mileage than previous models. The distinctive grill is still quite noticeable although with a slight change. The car even has the option of starting or stopping the engine from the key fob. (Don’t leave the key in your pocket and discover the engine is running).

The cost of tickets is $25 for one or $100 for five. The total amount of your purchase goes directly to SBCO and will be used for our programs of Kids’ Closet, Teen Closet and education which includes scholarships, tutoring and support of enrichment opportunities as well as food programs.

While color and options on the Cherokee are at the discretion of the Jim Click Automotive Team, you could still drive away with a new car for a $25 ticket.

A total of 50,000 tickets will be sold in the Tucson area. If you wish to take part in the raffle and support needy children in neighboring communities, you are welcome to contact SBCO President Maggie de Block 818-7835 or Treasurer Anne Everett 850-1365. All ticket stubs must be returned to the Jim Click office by SBCO at the end of October.

Nan Nasser

Do you shop on Amazon.com? Would you like a percentage of your purchase price to help needy youngsters in our area? Then AmazonSmile Foundation is for you!

When you are ready to shop, go to smile.amazon.com. Millions of items are eligible for a 5% donation to SaddleBrooke Community Outreach and are marked eligible on the product detail pages. All your current accounts remain the same, which includes shopping cart, Wish List, registries and other account settings.

AmazonSmile donates the 5% on the purchase price, minus whatever rebates you might have, and does not include shipping, handling, gift wrapping fees, taxes or service charges. Because Amazon is making the donation to SBCO you cannot claim it as a tax deduction. Watch for special promotions that might increase the amount you gift to SBCO.

SBCO Treasurer Anne Everett has registered Community Outreach with AmazonSmile and you are ready to shop while aiding youngsters in our neighboring communities! SBCO operates Kids’ Closet, offers educational opportunities and supports Tri Community Food Bank. For more information about this 100% volunteer organization that is a 501(c)(3) charity, go to our website:  www.community-outreach.org.

The tee-shirt design which will be on a muted gray shirt

The tee-shirt design which will be on a muted gray shirt

Walkathon 2014

Nan Nasser

The eighteenth annual SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Walkathon is scheduled for Saturday, October 25. Vital Moves will begin with warm-ups at 7:40 a.m. in the SaddleBrooke Clubhouse parking lot. The Grand Marshal car will then lead the walkers to Ridgeview Boulevard.

Following the walk around Ridgeview Boulevard, participants will enjoy a breakfast buffet at the clubhouse. There will be a shorter walk for those who would like it. Leashed pets are welcome on the walks but must remain outside the building during breakfast.

The tee-shirt is ready, the breakfast menu is established, and sponsors are being solicited. The actual cost of the event will be $30 per person, with children under 18 years of age at $15. Registration will begin in September. Raffle prizes include $100 gift cards to Basha’s, Valero Gas and Wal-Mart and gift certificates to our HOA restaurants. The tee-shirt, which you will receive when you register for the walk, is mandatory for the breakfast!

Proceeds from the Walkathon help to support all of our programs, which include Kids’ Closet, Teen Closet, educational opportunities and food donations to the Tri Community Food Bank. This year we are using the phrase It Takes a Village. SaddleBrooke can provide a huge village that will enhance the lives of many of our  neighboring children.

Scholarship Pizza Party

Nan Nasser

On August 2 the education committee of SaddleBrooke Community Outreach hosted the third annual pizza party at Kids’ Closet in Mammoth, inviting recent college scholarship recipients to meet with other recipients from past years and learn a bit about life on a college campus. Committee members introduced themselves and asked past recipients to offer some helpful hints. The 17 new recipients come from high schools in San Manuel, Hayden-Winkelman and Superior.

Students from area colleges talked about classes, the importance of volunteer work, making good use of your time and getting to know the teaching aides as well as the professors. Wyatt, a student at U of A, also recommended hanging out with the smart kids and you will be smart too. All the older students strongly urged new students to go to sports games and in most cases the costs of these are included in the student tuition.

The new recipients introduced themselves. They are looking at majors in pre-med, pharmacy, justice studies, accounting and nutrition. Some are undecided; one acknowledged he will be pursuing his courses online. Those in attendance represented University of Arizona, Arizona State, Northern Arizona University, Central Arizona Community College, Grand Canyon University and Brigham Young University.

The pizzas arrived and everyone enjoyed the food and the opportunities for conversation with committee members and with each other.