SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Happenings

 SBCO Adopt-a-Family/Child for the Holidays update

Ken and Ellen Perkins

We wanted to provide everyone an update on the SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Adopt-a-Child and Adopt-a-Family programs. We just returned from the snow and cold of New England where we spent the holidays with our family and our three grandchildren. Spending time with them reminds us of the importance of children for our nation’s future. It is always a relief when all of the shopping is done and the gifts have been delivered. Managing a project of this size is a huge task but the emotional rewards that we have received these past twelve years makes it all worthwhile.

In 2017, donations to the Adopt-a-Family and Adopt-a-Child programs increased substantially, allowing us to provide gifts to 96 families in Oracle, Mammoth and San Manuel and 286 Apache children on the San Carlos Reservation. We work closely with Tribal Social Services as well as school counselors, principals and superintendents to ensure that we are serving truly needy children and families. The thank you notes received from 18 of the families will be distributed to their sponsors. We want to express our sincere appreciation for the outpouring of support we received for both of these worthy programs.

Gift deliveries were made during a single very busy week. The SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) Kid’s Closet van was used on Friday, Monday and Wednesday to deliver to the San Manuel, Mammoth and Oracle elementary schools. On Tuesday, we borrowed IMPACT of Southern Arizona’s truck to deliver to San Carlos. Our truckers drove about 400 miles to get the gifts to where they could be distributed to the needy families and Indian children.

Many thanks are also due to all the shoppers and wrappers who contributed their time and energy to buy the gifts and get them all wrapped, packaged and labeled for on-time delivery. We also want to thank the unit and group coordinators who are the heart and soul of this operation. Without their dedication, the Adopt a Child and Adopt a Family programs couldn’t succeed. They keep everyone on schedule (including us) so that the gifts can be bought, wrapped and delivered. Lastly, Ken wants to give a special note of thanks to his loading and delivery team who always finds the time to get the job done. Even after loading about 290 bags of presents for the Apache children, everyone in the photo was still smiling.

As a reminder for the coming year: SBCO is a 501(c)3 not for profit organization. Contributions to SBCO, a qualifying charitable organization, are also eligible for the Arizona Tax Credit for contributions to Charities that Provide Assistance to the Working Poor. You can find more information in AZ Pub 710. If you have questions, please contact  your tax advisor.

Annual Food Drive – March 17

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

On Saturday, March 17 SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) volunteers will once again gather donations of food and money to support the Tri-Community Food Bank (TCFB) based in Mammoth. TCFB serves needy families living in Mammoth, San Manuel and Oracle. Our community’s donations help provide monthly emergency food boxes to 338 households (1,092 people). All monetary contributions go directly to grocery purchases and related expenses. Like SBCO, TCFB is an all-volunteer organization and is an IRS 501(c)3 and AZ non-profit charitable organization.

TCFB meets a real need in the Tri-Community area, where 20 percent of households live below the poverty level and 10 percent are below 50 percent of the poverty level. It’s hard to provide food for your family, keep a roof over your head and buy gas to drive to your job if you don’t earn enough to cover all these daily living expenses.

Plan to leave bagged food donations on your curb by 8:30 a.m. on March 17. They will be collected by Volunteer Unit Captains and taken to the Mountain View Clubhouse for sorting and transport to TCFB.

If you prefer to make a monetary donation, please make out a check to SBCO and write “food drive” on the memo line. You can either attach the check to your food bag or mail it to SBCO, 63675 E. SaddleBrooke Blvd., Ste. L, Tucson, AZ 85739.

More detailed information about the drive is forthcoming, but if you would like to volunteer to assist with the drive, please contact Joan Roberts at 784-1921 or send an email to [email protected].

Home Tour tickets now on sale

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

Ever wondered how others have remodeled their SaddleBrooke homes to improve traffic flow, expand storage options, create a space for hobbies or guests or simply modernize their surroundings? Then this year’s annual SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) home tour is perfect for you. It will focus on remodeled homes, allowing you to see extensive changes as well as budget-friendly transformations other residents have made.

This fundraising event, which helps SBCO support a variety of programs for children in nearby communities, will be held from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 11. During those four hours, you’ll be able to visit a half dozen homes. In addition to viewing good interior design, you’ll see clever bathroom and kitchen makeovers, new casitas, revised floor plans and renovated outdoor living spaces. You also can pick up information about local service providers and perhaps identify an idea you’d like to implement in your own home.

Tickets for the home tour go on sale Monday, February 5 at the SBCO office at Suite L in the mini-mart plaza. Tickets cost $15 per person or $25 for two people and are only sold to SaddleBrooke and SaddleBrooke Ranch residents. You can purchase tickets every Monday through Friday between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. at the SBCO office. Call your friends and plan now to attend this enjoyable fundraising event.

If you would like to serve as a docent in one of the 2018 tour homes, or offer your home for the 2019 tour, please send an email to [email protected].

SBCO enriches students’ education

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) works closely with local school districts to identify and fund programs that provide valuable educational opportunities for children. The Educational Committee reviews grant requests from schools and other agencies to select those that will be recommended for funding. Financial support has been approved for an extensive array of programs:

Amphitheater Schools: Ironwood Ridge High School and Coronado k-8 in Catalina

*Math Plus Tutoring by UA math students in the math labs at Ironwood Ridge High School. The tutors provide extra help to enable students to meet the math requirements for high school graduation. Over the course of the school year, 47 students receive assistance.

*Support for robotics instruction for advanced seventh and eighth grade students at the Coronado School, including the construction of robots and use of the ROBOTC programming language.

*Providing Carnegie Skills Practice Workbooks to Coronado Middle School students to improve their math skills.

*Scholarship support for 55 students at Coronado Middle School to participate in “We the People” National Invitational Conference in Washington, DC. This five-day program/contest is a culmination of a year’s study in civics and constitutional education. The program gives students the opportunity to experience their government in action and gain the skills, knowledge, and confidence they need to be informed, engaged citizens.

*Scholarship support for 60 Coronado social studies students to take a trip to the Grand Canyon.

*Pre-school through 8th grade speech-language technological therapy for Coronado students using iPads and speech therapy apps.

Oracle, AZ

*Scholarships for 12 students to attend the Triangle Y Summer Program in Oracle

*Kinder Prep Scholarships for six students, allowing the Oracle School Foundation to provide universal pre-school.

*Teens Sew Cool provides sewing skill instruction for up to 27 students in the San Manuel and Oracle Schools.

*Books and educational materials to start a library/learning center at Sycamore Canyon Academy outside Oracle.

Mammoth San Manuel Schools

*Kindergarten through 3rd grade Summer Enrichment Program, serving 25 to 30 students aged four to ten in the Mammoth San Manuel Unified School District.

*Summer swimming lessons and lifeguard training for Mammoth San Manual students.

*San Manuel Summer Girls Softball in April through July for 85 girls between the ages of three and 17.

*Mammoth San Manual After School Gifted Program for 25 students during the school year.

*Providing uniforms and equipment for teams in the San Manuel Little League, as well as tournament fees for low-income families.

*Eureka Math Program materials and training for Mammoth San Manuel elementary school students in kindergarten through 7th grade.

After School Programs

*Joint Technical Education Transportation Grant for Mammoth San Manuel High School and Central Arizona College. Support is provided for the curriculum, tech prep classes and transportation to classes at CAC and Pima JTED Central Arizona College at Aravaipa.

*Central Arizona College at Aravaipa Fall and Speaker Series for students from Oracle, San Manuel, Mammoth, Dudleyville, Hayden, Kearny and Winkleman. Speakers are recruited from career fields of interest to students, parents and faculty.

*College for Kids, an annual two-week science program for students in second through seventh grade, is held every summer at Central Arizona College in Aravaipa for 50 elementary students in the surrounding area. The 2017 program focused on Earth Science. SBCO is the main contributor to this program since other funding sources have evaporated. Our funding provides partial scholarships to students who would otherwise not be able to attend this popular program.

Ray Unified Schools: Kearny, AZ

*Book Shelf Reading Program in Kearny annually provides 50 students in second through fifth grades with new reading books and their own bookshelf made in prison woodworking classes.

*Support for 18 Ray Junior and Senior High School students to attend a social studies trip to Washington, DC.

Catalina Lions Club: Catalina AZ

*Vision screening machine for use with four-year-old children through adults.

Educational Committee members give high praise to the dedicated educational professionals with whom SBCO partners. They are all educational leaders, including those from the school districts of Mammoth San Manuel, Oracle, Amphitheater School District, the Triangle Y, the Mammoth and Sycamore Canyon libraries and the various sports programs. These excellent partners help SBCO meet its mission of “Providing Opportunities for Kids to Succeed.”