Honoring Youth, Volunteers, and Donors
The donor and volunteer community for Hillsides came together at our annual Circle of Excellence dinner to honor philanthropists for giving their time, resources, and special talent to serve vulnerable children, youth, and families living in Southern California. On behalf of Hillsides, I am so fortunate to have generous individuals, corporations, and foundations like yourselves because it is with your effort our agency can sustain this great mission.
The evening program began with two Youth Moving On residents speaking about their background, experience as youths transitioning to adulthood, and the impact that the YMO program has made in their lives. These youth testimonies were truly inspiring to hear and demonstrated how critical our support of former foster youth is to ensuring they are on a successful path to adulthood.
Our dedicated staff can provide programs such as YMO because of the ongoing generous support we receive from the community. The Circle of Excellence dinner, hosted at Pandora on Green, brought together 148 guests to pay tribute to our honorees. Receiving the Hillsides Community Angel Award was Starbucks, who was represented by Jennifer Vanderpool, Pasadena District Manager for the coffee company. Becky Garnett and Connie Endter, accepted the Hillsides Lifetime Achievement Award on behalf of Margaret Campbell, who is no longer with us, but lives in our hearts. Longtime supporter, Dee Fisher, received the Hillsides Angel Award. Our Special Recognition Award recipients were Cathy Brennan, Glenn Keller, and Victoria Mordecai. Each individual demonstrates a social conscience to create lasting changes in the lives of the most vulnerable that we serve. Through their resources, coordination of activities, and advocacy, Hillsides is able to provide the necessary programs and serves for children, youth, and families.
Just as exciting as it was to pay tribute to the tireless work of our honorees, I was delighted to announce that Wells Fargo selected Hillsides as the charity to be featured on the iconic Wells Fargo stagecoach during the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year’s Day. What a wonderful way to ring in the New Year and kickoff our centennial celebration! Especially significant is the opportunity of a lifetime that a few children and youth will get by riding on the stagecoach.
The Circle of Excellence was the beginning of other gatherings held during the holidays. This week we held an H100 Member Social so new members of this volunteer support group could meet one another and learn more about YMO and our holiday giving.
We rely on your continued support as we get ready for the holiday season. And as you are attending holiday gatherings, serving a cherished family meal, and unwrapping gifts, please think of us and know we are certainly thinking of you for giving our children, youth, and families restored hope and a brighter future in the upcoming year.