June 4, 2013 Press Release: Impact100 Sonoma Announces the Finalists for Its $228,000 in Grants to be Awarded June 22

Sonoma, CA—June 4, 2013

Impact100 Sonoma will award $228,000 in grants to a variety of Sonoma Valley nonprofit organizations at its June 22 meeting. Its annual $100,000 Impact Grant will be awarded to one of the following three nonprofit organizations serving Sonoma Valley:

  • Prevention & Intervention area The Sonoma Valley Education Foundation in partnership with the Sonoma Valley Unified School District. Its proposal will expand early learning opportunities for children at high risk of entering kindergarten without the necessary social, behavioral, and academic skills necessary for early learning and school success. This program would establish a new preschool for 48 children at Sassarini School, building on the highly successful model at El Verano School.
  • Social Outreach area – WillMar Family Grief & Healing Center. Its proposal will provide peer grief support services in all seven of Sonoma Valley’s elementary schools as an expansion of its highly successful pilot program, GriefReach.  The program provides expressive arts-based peer grief support as well as grief-related coaching and teaching tools for the 250 faculty and staff employed at these schools.
  • Women & Girls area – Sonoma Valley Hospital Foundation. Its proposal will support a Women’s Healthcare Navigator Program providing professional bilingual expertise and health and wellness education tailored to individual woman’s and girl’s needs. Services will help clients to “navigate” the complexities of the health care system, provide help in understanding tests and treatments, and educate about wise health care decisions.

During the 2012-13 grant cycle, 228 women joined Impact100 Sonoma, enabling a total of $228,000 to be awarded in grant funds this year.  As a result, in addition to the $100,000 Impact Grant, the remaining finalists for the Impact Grant will each receive $20,000, and a total of $88,000 will be awarded in Community Grants, ranging in size from $5,000 to $15,000 and focusing on capital needs, innovation, and strategic partnering/collaboration.

The following 13 organizations are the Community Grants finalists:

Capital Needs: 

  • Literary Arts Guild-Free Bookmobile of Sonoma is requesting $3000 to purchase and install a galvanized steel carport-type vehicle shelter to house and protect the Free Bookmobile.
  • Sonoma Valley Community Health Center is requesting $13,000 to replace flooring and chairs as part of their “Waiting Room Improvement Project.”
  • WillMar Family Grief & Healing Center provides peer grief support for children traumatized by the loss of a loved one. The center is requesting $12,000 to upgrade their Art Room to better serve Sonoma Valley’s grieving children.


  • Becoming Independent is requesting $5,000 to expand their Healthy Living class which helps teach adults with developmental disabilities how to lead a healthy life.
  • California Parenting Institute is requesting $15,000 to provide Gang Prevention Parent Support Services – two, ten-week sessions offered to Spanish-speaking parents of middle-school children.
  • Ceres Community Project is requesting $15,000 to for a 6-month pilot program that will provide healthy meals for seriously ill patients and their families.  Under the supervision of adult chefs, meals will be prepared by teens recruited from local youth organizations.
  • Hospice by the Bay is requesting $10,000 to support a “Home Away From Home” Hospice Suite, within the Sonoma Valley Hospital’s skilled nursing facility, so that patients can receive end-of-life hospice care in a hospital setting.
  • On the Move/VOICES is requesting $15,000 to develop a new program that will assist under-served youth, who are transitioning from foster care, enabling them to move into self-sufficient adult life.
  • Redwood Empire Food Bank is requesting $15,000 to establish a cost-effective and convenient Hub Distribution model to improve access to affordable, healthy food for local nonprofits dealing with hunger-relief in Sonoma Valley.
  • Sonoma Valley Education Foundation is requesting $15,000 to improve and enhance their School Garden Program by purchasing and providing a bilingual Life Lab Science curriculum and training site coordinators at seven elementary schools.

Planning for Strategic Partnering/Collaboration: 

  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Sonoma Valley is requesting $15,000 to develop a collaborative action plan and coordinated effort focusing on gang prevention. Partners include the City of Sonoma Police Department, La Luz, and Social Advocates for Youth.
  • Sonoma Community Center in collaboration with VOM/Jack London Park is requesting $15,000 to plan and test the feasibility of developing a volunteer center serving all nonprofit organizations in Sonoma Valley.
  • Valley of the Moon Natural History Association in collaboration with Jack London and seven other organizations is requesting $10,000 to develop an environmental and recreational program for at-risk teens.

Patti England, who chairs the selection process for the $100,000 Impact Grant, said, “We are presenting another slate of finalists that will make the selection process very difficult for our members.  The grant process has introduced us to so many wonderful organizations and enlightened us about the needs of our valley and the fine work that so many nonprofits are undertaking to make this an even better place to live.” Lorraine Ashton, Chair of Community Grants, commented, “This year Community Grants received an unprecedented number of terrific proposals from the nonprofits of Sonoma Valley. Three committees of dedicated women completed the huge undertaking of reducing the number to an excellent slate of finalists for our membership vote. These women are to be commended for the conscientious commitment and professionalism that they brought to this task.”  Constance Grizzell, Vice President of Grants & Greater Impact added, “Impact100 Grant Committees have done an outstanding job of selecting the finalists, taking on the responsibility for the whole Impact100 membership, and the leadership shown from Patti and Lorraine made the process flow so smoothly.”

In February, Impact100 Sonoma received a total of 45 Letters of Inquiry from Sonoma Valley nonprofit organizations interested in applying for the $100,000 annual Impact Grant and smaller Community Grants. After Impact100 Sonoma Grants Committee members reviewed the Letters of Inquiry, the organization invited 7 nonprofits to submit full proposals for the $100,000 Impact Grant and 18 organizations to submit full proposals for Community Grants. The finalists were selected after months of careful review by more than 80 Impact100 Sonoma members serving on grant review committees.

At the June 22 Annual Meeting of the Impact100 Sonoma membership, each Impact Grant finalist will present its vision for how the $100,000 grant would impact its organization and the community. A vote of the entire 228 members of Impact100 Sonoma will determine the one nonprofit to receive the $100,000 Impact Grant. Voting for the Community Grants will take place online prior to this meeting. The presentations, a reception, and the announcement of all awards will take place at Hanna Boys Center’s Auditorium and is open to all Impact100 Sonoma members and invited guests.  The meeting is underwritten by Union Bank and sponsored by The Red Grape, Carneros Caves Cheese, Charles Creek Vineyard, Madrone Ridge Winery, Walter & Pistole Attorneys at Law, Hanna Boys Center, Trish Roque Design, and Debbie Drummond Information Technology Specialties.

Impact100 Sonoma is a philanthropic organization that brings together at least 100 women in a common purpose: to award an Impact Grant of $100,000 every year to a Sonoma Valley nonprofit organization that would otherwise not have access to that level of funding. Impact100 Sonoma has raised a total of $690,000 for Sonoma Valley nonprofits since its founding in 2009. The organization’s mission is to increase the number of women involved in local philanthropy, raise awareness of the unmet needs of nonprofits in Sonoma Valley, encourage members to become more involved with local charities, and make an impact on the long term sustainability of Sonoma Valley’s nonprofit community. Thus far, the organization has awarded three $100,000 Impact Grants: in 2010 to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Sonoma Valley’s College Bound program, in 2011 to the Sonoma Valley Teen Services’ Skills for Life program, and in 2012 to La Luz to expand programs and services at its Family Resource Center.