Life can feel a bit tattered these days. Natural disasters, the lingering Covid news and personal ups and downs are wearing on us all. If we learn about a new need or challenge, it can feel daunting. It's too much! There are good days, and then sometimes it feels like we're living in a dystopian movie.
But, you know what's amazing? There are heroes in our movie.
In a similar, silent-swooping way that many super heroes swing in and scoop up a child out of distress, there is a stealthy, and mighty local hero on the scene by the name of Marin Charitable. For 60 years, this organization has been quietly raising much-needed funds to support critical community needs.
This year, a group of 120 members of this heroically-altruistic association are celebrating that 6 decades ago, 10 pioneering young women noticed that things were hard; that something had to be done. Way back in 1961, this group of Marin General Hospital volunteers combined efforts to raise funds for the Cardiac Care Unit, and succeeded.
Realizing their potential, and noticing more exposed cracks in the community, particularly among children, they forged ahead. In 1964, they decided to incorporate Marin Charitable as an independent nonprofit entity, and focused on helping Marin’s tweens and teens, often an overlooked group. The rest isn’t history; it’s really about our future because every child who grows up ‘whole’ often turns around to repeat the kindness.
“Like our much-valued first responders on the front-line, many nonprofits are doing the hard work that makes all the difference.”
There are lots of organizations in our county that work to ensure this wholeness persists. Tireless volunteers with AdvoKids answer calls from distraught relatives of children tangled in our fractured foster care system. After-school helpers at Bolinas Stinson Young Stewards of the Land develop and monitor programs that ensure kids have snacks and a place to go while both parents work. Horse experts at Halleck Creek Ranch facilitate and make their animals available for break-through therapy support, the value of which we’ve only recently begun to fully understand.
Many caring individuals are in a position to roll up their sleeves to help these organizations, and then there are some who are able to offer monetary donations, but the crucial, ongoing financial support is hard to come by. That’s where Marin Charitable continues to swoop in and save the day. Each year, 3 major fundraising events generate nearly $175,000, 100% of which is then granted to non-profit applicants. That’s $4.6m over more than a half century of fundraising and swooping in.
So, rest assured because there truly are people - heroes - to help, and it will go on for many more years. One guarantee that the support will never cease is that Marin Charitable is preparing to launch an Endowment that will continue to support grantees for years to come during economic and organizational fluctuations. And second, because as we all know, as long as there are catastrophes and villains, there will also be heroes. Our county…our community…has a group of dedicated heroes and they are the volunteers of our local organizations; of Marin Charitable.