Top 49 Favorite Charities: It's Time to Vote!
It's time for the second phase of our Favorite Charities contest, created in partnership with fellow San Francisco native Pacific Gas and Electric Company. Thanks to over 2,000 of your nominations, San Francisco has named its top 49 non-profits. It's now time to vote!
Seven of these will be taking home cash - the top six will be taking home $2,000 grants from PG&E. But, one who garners the most votes will have their holidays brightened with a total of $10,000.
So vote for your favorite in each of the seven categories below. The winner of each category will go on to compete for top billing and the $10,000.
Voting for the Top 49 will continue through 5 p.m. on November 13.
Voting for the Top 7 begins November 14.
After you read below about how these awesome charities are helping San Francisco, you can make your voting selection at the bottom of the page. And without further adieu:
HOMELESSNESS & HOUSING
Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco is a local affiliate of Habitat for Humanity International that partners with hardworking families, community volunteers and donors, to build affordable ownership homes in Marin, San Francisco and on the Peninsula. Through the Habitat for Humanity program, families working in service, manufacturing, retail and other sectors are able to live near their jobs in decent, safe, permanent homes.
Founded in 1990, Community Housing Partnership is the only San Francisco nonprofit organization exclusively dedicated to providing permanent, supportive housing to formerly homeless individuals and families. These supportive residences address the needs of seniors, families with young children, youth at risk of homelessness, and adults with physical or cognitive disorders, and provide an essential and comprehensive network of services including job training and placement opportunities, family and youth programs, substance abuse treatment and community organizing.
The Homeless Prenatal Program (HPP) is an award-winning San Francisco Family Resource Center. For more than 20 years, HPP has provided poor and homeless families the ability to end childhood poverty. Built on a foundation of supportive, nonjudgmental case management, they empower families, particularly mothers motivated by pregnancy and parenthood, to recognize their strengths and trust in their own capacity to transform their lives.
Founded in 1981, Family House is an organization providing temporary housing to families of seriously ill children receiving treatment at the University of California San Francisco Benioff Children's Hospital. Qualifying families live more than 50 miles from UCSF, and many live at or below the low-income status as determined by UCSF.
For over forty years, Raphael House has been a leader in family services in San Francisco. Through a “homeowners” approach to social service, we work with parents and families to lay the foundations for a lifetime of healthy development, achievement and stability.
North Beach Citizens is a non-profit organization that utilizes the talents of the North Beach community to innovatively address the needs of its homeless and low-income citizens in an atmosphere of trust, integrity, and respect. Their core program, the SEEDS Program (Securing Employment and Engagement through Dedicated Service), is accessible from our resource center in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood. This program is geared towards chronically homeless individuals.
Women Organized to Make Abuse Nonexistent, Inc. (WOMAN, Inc.) has operated since 1978 as a community-based, multi-service agency, serving survivors of domestic violence in San Francisco and the larger Bay Area. In addition to our 24 hour crisis line, they provide culturally sensitive support to survivors in domestic violence situations.
Narika’s vision is to collaboratively and compassionately work to prevent and eradicate domestic violence and exploitation in various South Asian communities. They help organize, mobilize, and actively support women and families of our diverse communities to live violence-free, healthy lives.
Women's Initiative for Self Employment provides high-potential, low-income women with the training, funding and ongoing support to start their own businesses and become financially self sufficient.
Since 2002, The Princess Project has promoted self-confidence and individual beauty by providing free prom dresses and accessories to high school girls who cannot otherwise afford them. Each year, more than 1,000 Bay Area girls find that new prom dress and those perfect accessories to make their high school prom a reality.
Girls on the Run of the Bay Area provides an innovative running program for girls ages 8 to 13 that uses experiential learning to teach very specific and well-defined social and personal skills. The program culminates in a non-competitive community running event that gives the girls a chance to shine and an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.
Spark’s mission is two-fold. They aim to increase the overall investment in women’s organizations around the world and we aim to increase the number of young people who give to women’s causes now and plan to continue in the long-term.
Since 1971, San Francisco Women's Centers has represented and been guided by the belief that all women and girls have the right to safe, joyous and creative lives. In 1979, the organization purchased The Women's Building, creating one of the first women-owned community centers. Their mission is to provide women and girls with the tools and resources they need to achieve full and equal participation in society.
CIVIC PHILANTHROPY & VOLUNTEERISM
The Junior League of San Francisco, Inc. (JLSF) is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women, and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable.
Yuppie Friday is a group of young urban professionals dedicated to supporting San Francisco philanthropy through cocktails. Their mission is to increase awareness, raise financial support and encourage volunteerism for local Bay Area charities. They meet every other month on a Friday at various bars around the Financial District for a happy hour featuring a particular charitable organization.
The Guardsmen is a group of Bay Area men mobilizing their significant talents and resources to enhance and improve the lives of at-risk youth. This all-volunteer organization, founded in 1947, provides access to high-quality educational and outdoor activities for inner-city youth. The opportunities created through The Guardsmen's scholarship and campership programs mean that every year kids who otherwise would not have a chance at success are given the opportunity to excel as productive members of society.
United Way is a Bay Area nonprofit whose mission is to be the catalyst that enables people to strengthen our communities by investing in one another. One in five Bay Area residents lives in poverty. Our goal is to cut that number in half by 2020 by harnessing creativity, expertise, and philanthropy.
SF Smiles believes that no one should go without the basic essentials of living. Their mission is to create a community in which no fundamental need goes unmet, thereby giving every individual the opportunity to lead a healthy, productive life.
Project by Project is a national volunteer organization of social entrepreneurs focusing on issues relating to the Asian American community by raising public awareness, volunteerism and capital. PbP selects a different theme to champion from year to year. Local chapters select a community-based organization that is focused on issues within that theme and tailors a year-long campaign to help its fundraising, community outreach and public awareness efforts.
The San Francisco CASA Program (SFCASA) is a community-based organization founded in 1991 with its first graduating class of 11 volunteer advocates. It is the only volunteer program in San Francisco that empowers everyday citizens to become officers of the court to serve as advocates and mentors to abused and neglected children in foster care.
ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY & JOB DEVELOPMENT
Upwardly Global connects skilled immigrants with employers and provides both with the resources to succeed together. They are practical visionaries, inspired to deliver on the promise of America, since their commitment to integration of skilled immigrants is a pledge to the future of the United States.
Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center is a nonprofit small business development organization dedicated to helping women and men who traditionally lack access to resources and information to achieve financial self-sufficiency through entrepreneurship. They provide training, support services, resources, and networks for business owners at every stage of business development.
The mission of La Cocina is to cultivate low-income food entrepreneurs as they formalize and grow their businesses by providing affordable commercial kitchen space, industry-specific technical assistance and access to market and capital opportunities. They focus primarily on women from communities of color and immigrant communities.
Delancey Street is the country's leading residential self-help organization for former substance abusers, ex-convicts, homeless and others who have hit bottom. Residents at Delancey Street range from teenagers to senior citizens, and include men and women and all races and ethnicities. The average resident has been a hard-core drug and alcohol abuser, has been in prison, is unskilled, functionally illiterate, and has a personal history of violence and generations of poverty.
Old Skool Café (OSC) is a faith- based, violence prevention program, providing jobs and training to youth, (with an emphasis on at-risk, urban youth) ages 16-22, at our 1940’s styled supper club. OSC confronts the epidemic of violence by providing at- risk and previously incarcerated and foster care youth with a variety of career opportunities that would normally not be afforded them.
The San Francisco Conservation Corps offers young people opportunities to develop themselves, their academic abilities and marketable job skills while addressing community needs through service work.
Success Center's mission is to offer meaningful vocational and educational services for youth so that they may develop a positive self-image as well as a sense of hope and purpose for their future. With raised expectations for their success, they teach, guide, counsel, and mentor participants through GED classes, service learning, job-readiness/life skills classes, and referrals to jobs and/or post-secondary education.
HEALTH & NUTRITION
This agency's mission of delivering nutritious balanced meals to homebound seniors in San Francisco has remained the same since its founding in 1970. For 40 years, MOWSF has set the standard for alleviating the financial and emotional costs of premature and/or inappropriate institutionalization of seniors.
Project Open Hand meets community nutrition needs through programs for people living with HIV/AIDS, the homebound critically ill, and seniors. They provide meals and groceries for people with symptomatic HIV/AIDS or breast cancer, meals for homebound/critically ill people under the age of 60 and congregate lunches for people over 60 years of age, regardless of their race, color, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, disability or ability to pay.
Walden House was founded in 1969 in the same Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco to help homeless and runaway adolescents with substance abuse problems. Today, Walden House treats people with mental health and substance abuse problems at various residential and outpatient centers throughout California, including in-prison treatment programs, and facilities in San Francisco and Los Angeles, providing drug and alcohol treatment and mental health, vocational and housing services for people transitioning back into their communities.
The SF Food Bank collects millions of pounds of food for delivery to over 400 local nonprofit organizations, serving over 225,000 people a year.
In the spirit of St. Francis of Assisi, the mission of St. Anthony Foundation is to feed, heal, shelter, clothe, lift the spirits of those in need, and create a society in which all persons flourish. They are committed to providing the poor of San Francisco with basic needs and services as a gateway to reclaiming their sense of dignity and to progressing towards stability.
Since 2001, Breast Cancer Emergency Fund (BCEF) has been the only Bay Area organization dedicated to providing emergency financial assistance to low-income women and men battling breast cancer. To date, they have delivered over $1.5 million in quick, compassionate care to help reduce financial hardship, improve quality of life and enable people focus on their health and their families.
Make-A-Wish grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy.
YOUTH & EDUCATION
Their mission is to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported 1-to-1 relationships that change their lives for the better…forever.
The mission of Larkin Street Youth Services is to create a continuum of services that inspires youth to move beyond the street. They provide a peer-based substance abuse treatment program, provide safe temporary housing for kids who before slept on the streets, and in 1997, they opened the nation’s first comprehensive housing program for HIV+ youth, named Assisted Care.
Real Options for City Kids (ROCK) is dedicated to nurturing the healthy development of girls and boys, ages 6-17, who live in or attend school in San Francisco's Visitacion Valley, by providing opportunities to those who might not otherwise have access. They promote the positive development and long-term success of the youth that it serves through a combination of in-school and afterschool learning enrichment, sports and fitness, leadership training and outdoor adventure opportunities.
The mission of Oakes Children's Center is to help developmentally delayed and emotionally disturbed children develop the independence and self-awareness necessary to live and continue learning in the least restrictive setting possible within their local community.
Outward Bound California is a nonprofit educational organization and expedition school offering experiential learning programs that challenge students to develop the skills and inner strengths they to succeed in their schools, communities and careers.
This college access program helps students finish high school and become the first in their families to graduate from college. Starting the summer after 6th grade, the organization makes 10-year commitments to each student, providing year-round academic instruction, community, college scholarships and support.
Jumpstart San Francisco is a local affiliate site of Jumpstart for Young Children, Inc. Housed at San Francisco State University, Jumpstart pairs highly-trained college students with preschool age children struggling in early learning programs for one-to-one tutoring in school readiness skills.
City of Dreams is a volunteer-based organization serving young people aged 9-17 living in San Francisco’s low-income and public housing communties. They empower at-risk youth to end the generational poverty cycle, make healthy choices, and become architects of their own futures through four dynamic programs: the Mentor Program, Junior Mentor Program, Out of School Program, and Experiential Learning Events.
ADDITIONAL COMMUNITY VITALITY
Rocket Dog Rescue saves dogs from death at over-crowded shelters and find them loving, happy homes. Now into their tenth year, RDR has saved the lives of over 6,000 animals.
Loup Garou Rescue is dedicated to the rescue and re-homing of black and dark colored companion animals from shelters where they are disproportionately euthanized for their color. They pull dark colored and black companion animals from local shelters, place them into foster homes and actively search out permanent adoptive homes for them.
Under One Roof is the only non-profit retail store of its kind in the entire world, raising hundreds of thousands of dollars annually for San Francisco Bay Area men, women, and children living with HIV/AIDS. The organization inspires and unites community volunteers, donors, staff, sponsors and merchant supporters to help generate unrestricted funds for non-profit agencies that provide HIV/AIDS education and support services, including promoting positive, healthy lifestyles.
San Francisco SAFE, Inc. (Safety Awareness for Everyone) is a non-profit organization that guides residents, business owners, and community members to improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods. SAFE provides education and support regarding public safety and assists community members in identifying and resolving issues of crime and violence.
Founded in 2011, the Peter Patrick Madigan Antonini (PPMA) Foundation was established in memory of Peter Antonini, a native San Franciscan and member of the 108th academy class of the San Francisco Fire Department, who suffered a sudden cardiac arrest from an undetected genetic heart disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Through their memorial golf tournament and other events, the PPMA Foundation hopes to raise funds necessary to support research, legislation and prevention of HCM, fund academic scholarships, and contribute to various local charities and organizations.
The Janet Pomeroy Center provides recreational, vocational and educational opportunities for people with disabilities through programs and services that encourage self-expression, promote personal achievement, and lead to greater independence. Currently the Center provides programs for adults, children, teens, and seniors each week with support from dedicated and skilled staff.
GLIDE's mission is to create a radically inclusive, just and loving community mobilized to alleviate suffering and break the cycles of poverty and marginalization. Their core values emerge from GLIDE as a spiritual movement. They are rooted in empowerment, recovery and personal transformation.
VOTING IS NOW FINISHED! Stay tuned for the Top 7 on Wednesday 11/14.