Holiday Spirit

Sandra and her baby are clients of the nonprofit health center, which is one of 10 beneficiaries of The Almanac Holiday Fund. Photo courtesy of Ravenswood Family Health Center.

Posted December 20, 2019

Nonprofit health center offers pregnancy, parenting support

by Jessica Yee, director of development, planning & evaluation, and Valeria Sandoval, development associate at Ravenswood Family Health Center

This holiday season, Ravenswood Family Health Center is among the 10 local nonprofits that will benefit from donations to The Almanac's Holiday Fund. With a clinic in East Palo Alto, the center provides primary medical services and preventive health care to thousands.

Clients include mothers like Sandra and Johanna, who have had the opportunity to participate in both the CenteringPregnancy and the CenteringParenting programs offered by the center, and who say they have had wonderful experiences.

CenteringPregnancy is a group-care model that provides prenatal care to mothers, and CenteringParenting is a group-care model that provides pediatric care and parenting education throughout a child's first two years of life.

Although Johanna and Sandra were not first-time mothers, they still had many questions surrounding their pregnancies — from pregnancy myths and sleep safety, to eating habits. CenteringPregnancy's safe and comfortable community environment encouraged Sandra, Johanna, and other pregnant mothers to ask questions and learn from each other.

"[Although] I am a shy person, I love to hear others' opinions because I felt like there was so much to learn," Johanna says.

Sandra and Johanna have been able to continue sharing the journey of their babies' development with the same cohort of mothers through CenteringParenting, where they felt support from the other mothers and the Ravenswood clinic staff.

Both Johanna and Sandra recommend CenteringPregnancy and CenteringParenting because it has led them to positive results. "I benefited from being in both programs because it allowed me to receive continued care," Sandra says.

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2021 Recipient Agency

Boys & Girls Club of the Peninsula
Provides after-school academic support, enrichment, and mentoring for 1,800 low-income K-12 youth at nine locations across Menlo Park, East Palo Alto, and the North Fair Oaks neighborhood of Redwood City.

Ecumenical Hunger Program
Provides emergency food, clothing, household essentials, and sometimes financial assistance to families in need, regardless of religious preference, including Thanksgiving and Christmas baskets for more than 2,000 households.

Health Connected
Serves over 5,000 students and their families each year through comprehensive sexual health education programs. Students learn to have ongoing communication with parents and to make informed decisions that will apply to their lives, now and in the future.

LifeMoves
Provides shelter/housing and supportive services across 18 sites in Silicon Valley and the Peninsula. Serves thousands of homeless families and individuals annually on their path back to permanent housing and self-sufficiency.

Literacy Partners
Provides free literacy services to adults in the Menlo Park area. Trained volunteers work one-on-one to help adults improve reading, writing and English language skills so they can function more effectively at home, at work and in the community. Basic English classes, weekly conversation clubs and volunteer-led computer enrichment are also offered.

Ravenswood Family Health Center
Provides primary medical and preventive health care for all ages at its clinic in East Palo Alto. Of the more than 17,000 registered patients, most are low-income and uninsured and live in the ethnically diverse East Palo Alto, Belle Haven, and North Fair Oaks areas.

St. Anthony's Padua Dining Room
Serves hundreds of hot meals six days a week to people in need who walk through the doors. Funded by voluntary contributions and community grants, St. Anthony's is the largest dining room for the needy between San Francisco and San Jose. It also offers take-home bags of food, as well as emergency food and clothing assistance.

St. Francis Center
Helps low-income, working families become self-supporting members of the community by providing long-term solutions through educational programs for children and parents, as well as after-school programing at Siena Youth Centers. St. Francis Center also provides housing, food and clothing services to address short-term needs.

StarVista
Serves more than 32,000 people throughout San Mateo County, including children, young people and families, with counseling, prevention, early intervention, education, and residential programs. StarVista also provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention services including a 24-hour suicide crisis hotline, an alcohol and drug helpline, and a parent support hotline.

Upward Scholars
Upward Scholars empowers low-income adults by providing them with financial support, tutoring, and other assistance so they can continue their education, get higher-paying jobs, and serve as role models and advocates for their children.

As of January 14, 2020
167 donors have contributed $150,000
to the Almanac Holiday Fund.
* indicates amount withheld

23 Anonymous22400
Jerry & Shirley Carlson250
James E. Esposto*
Sherrill Swan1000
Dorothy B. Kennedy*
Kathy & Bob Mueller100
Barbara Jacobson150
Penny & Greg Gallo500
Lucy Reid-Krensky100
Dorothy Saxe100
Joe & Julie Zier100
Roger & Pat Witte100
Kathy & Bob Feldman500
Susan Kritzik & Bruce McAuley500
Paul Welander75
Victoria Rundorff*
Lynne Davis*
Donald Lowry & Lynore Tillim100
Laura Hofstadter & Leonard Shar500
Brennan Family200
Douglas Keare Jr. & Jill Morgan1000
Leslie & Hy Murveit200
Karin Eckelmeyer100
Mark Weitzel10000
Connie & Bob Lurie5000
Bob & Mary Dodge300
Barbara & Bob Ells500
Barbara & Bill Binder*
Gail & Susan Prickett500
Ron & Carol Clazie*
Michael & Lenore Roberts150
Margaret Melaney200
Linda Keegan200
Andrea G Julian500
Anne Hillman1000
Lynne S. Fovinci50
Sybille Kats*
Lorraine Macchello100
Bob & Marna Page*
Robert & Barbara Simpson*
Susan Carey2000
Clay & Nita Judd*
Elizabeth Tromovich100
Robert & Connie Loarie*
Tate Family10000
Anne G. Moser*
Del Secco Family*
Robert L. Mullen250
Thelma L. Smith*
Robert & Karen Allen50
Don & Catherine Coluzzi*
Paul Perret500
Barbara L. Bessey*
Margaret & Jamis MacNiven100
Susanna Tang & Albert Scherm300
D Austin Grose500
Carole Mawson100
Charles Martin250
Bill Wohler419
Marcia Makino250
Duncan & Jean Davidson*
Susan Hine100
Amy Roleder100
Betty Meissner150
Tricia Wright2000
Joyce Pharriss250
Joan Lane1000
Ken Ashford75
Ann Morgan*
Kathy & Bob Feldman120
Pegasus Family2000
Sandy Shapero500
Erika L Crowley*
Calhoon Family500
Earlune Mund200
E.R. & B.L. Dodd175
Frank & Betsy Stockdale1000
Mary Kenney*
Christina & Bill McClure100
Wanda Cavanaugh100
Mike & Leslie Crisp100
Renee Chevalier500
Jonathan Hahn50
Gary & Roma Wagner250
Charles Bacon & Cynthia Dusel-Bacon200
Bettina Mcadoo500
Susan Ellis & Mark Linton*
Kayleen Miller100
Sue & Viole100
Gordon Chamberlain600
Gisela Brugger1000
Bruce & Ann Willard1500
Ann Treadwell*
Maggie Mah & Thomas Johnson*
Marc & MaryAnn Saunders*
Judy & Doug Adams*
Volckmann Famkly2000
Stamler-Kemeny Family750
Melanie Austin500
Barbara Kent250
Linda Craig & Evan Hughes250
Steve Patrick100
Dorothy Polash200
Kerry DeBenedetti*
Linda Maki150
Betsy & Horace Nash500
John Barbour30
Mary Cooper50
C. Friesman100
Dianne Ellsworth250
David Reneau150
Michelle Rapp1000
C. & B. Thompson225
Bobbie & Gale Fullerton100
Noble & Lorraine Hancock500
Stan Scott75
Donna Mackowski200
Kathryn Stivers1000
Tom & Joyce Dienstbier*
Frank & Nancy Sammann10
Annie Nunan200
Terri D. Bullock Family2500
Jim Lewis*
Kenneth M. Ashford193
Bob Barrett & Linda Atkinson250
In Memory Of

Peter Hurlbut100
Jerry Carlson of Woodside*
Annie Strem*
Louise Bertolucci25
Jean Zonner1500
Esther Johnson100
Ted Heidinger250
Bill Land*
Jean Zonner1500
Penny Gamel*
In Honor Of

Nancy Stevens*
The Liggett Family*
Dennis McBride250
Businesses/Organizations

Carstens Realty10000
Menlo Park Rotary Club Tour de Menlo Bike Ride20000
Griffin & Sons Construction150
Menlo Park Firefighters Association500
Narrative Histories - Maggie & Mark da Silva200
Hewlett Foundation8750
Packard Foundation15000