Chamber toy drive a success
La Mesa Chamber members, friends and sponsors came together on Dec. 4 to celebrate and give back to the community by collecting and distributing toys and items to military families living in La Mesa.
This is the fourth year the chamber has assisted these children and their families. The chamber partnered with the following sponsors to help make this happen: presenting sponsor EDCO; supporting sponsors First Command Financial Services and Kirk Paving, Inc.; underwriting sponsor State Farm Insurance, Kristie Facto Agency; and sponsors Nightwalker Caverns Escape Room Adventures, BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse, Cali Comfort BBQ, Carl Burger Dodge Chrysler Jeep RAM World and Valley Farm Market.
The chamber collected a grand total of 732 toys and books. In addition to these gifts, the effort raised gift cards to Target in the amount of $900 for these families.
Teresa McClatchy and her team at Barnes & Noble sold or donated 387 books and toys to the public through the chamber’s one month “Stuff the Jeep” portion of this project. Kyle Nyswonger and the team at Carl Burger Dodge Chrysler Jeep Ram World transported all of the books from Barnes & Noble, stored them and delivered them to the party!
Matthew Eastman and his team at BJ’s did a wonderful job of keeping the platters filled with piping hot pizzas, pasta dishes and chilled salads.
The chamber gives thanks to everyone who joined them and donated toys at the party and to those who made a financial investment and partnered on this special holiday project!
Healthcare District fights hunger
If you randomly selected seven people in East San Diego County, odds are that one of those people will go home to little or no food, according to the Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank, a grant recipient of the Grossmont Healthcare District.
Because of this alarming statistic, the Grossmont Healthcare District (GHD) combats the chronic, and sometimes deadly, health consequences of poor and unavailable nutrition through nearly $70,000 in grants to the Food Bank, Meals-On-Wheels, and Serving Seniors.
“Hunger exists around every corner in San Diego County,” said James Floros, president and CEO of Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank. “The Grossmont Healthcare District helps provide crucial food insecurity relief to East County families facing the unthinkable decision between paying bills and buying nutritious food. It takes all our caring and generous neighbors to make sure people do not go hungry.”
GHD also gave a $14,000 grant to provide resources at the distribution site, Heaven’s Windows in Spring Valley. This distribution site consists of 90% fresh produce, nearly 155,000 pounds of which were distributed to East County residents last year alone.
Heaven’s Windows is a member of San Diego County’s Live Well San Diego initiative, which helps empower residents to take positive actions to improve their health, safety and overall well-being.
The aging population in East San Diego County makes up a good portion of the area’s poor. As such, a full $55,000 in grants support Serving Seniors and Meals-On-Wheels Greater San Diego.
In the past, GHD has funded the purchase of a van to help deliver nearly 100,000 fresh, nutritious meals each year to low-income, homebound seniors.
Many volunteer and donation opportunities are available to help neighbors in need.
“We encourage folks to give as much as they are able this holiday season,” said Barry Jantz, CEO of the Grossmont Healthcare District. “Everyone can do something to spread a little cheer.”
Area residents can get involved in helping their neighbors in need to stave off cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity and cancer by donating time or resources to organizations like The Jacobs & Cushman San Diego Food Bank, Meals-On-Wheels, or Serving Seniors this holiday season. Learn more at grossmonthealthcare.org.
Women’s Club to host blood drive
On Saturday, Jan. 26 the La Mesa Woman’s Club will host a blood drive from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the clubhouse parking lot, 5220 Wilson St. January is National Blood Donor Month for the San Diego Blood Bank. Thanks to the generosity of blood donors, people in our local hospitals are able to get the blood they need when they need it.
To make an appointment to donate, visit SanDiegoBloodBank.org/LMWC.
La Mesa Woman’s Club was established in 1902 and is the oldest non-profit organization in La Mesa. The scholarship program for seniors from Grossmont Union High School District began in 1971 by Margie Howard-Hartman who gave a $100 scholarship. This program has grown and the Club has awarded 237 scholarships to local high school seniors over the past 44 years in the amount of $93,600. The Club was instrumental in starting the first library and thrift shop in La Mesa. The members also donate to many other local charities each year.
Membership in the La Mesa Woman’s Club provide opportunities for women to meet and socialize and to hold fundraisers for their scholarship funds. The membership drive for 2019 is in progress and dues are $50 for the year. The next Club meeting will be at 6:30 on Wednesday, Feb. 13. RSVP to 619-466-4362. For more information, visit lamesawomensclub.org.
History Society ‘Buy a Brick’ campaign
La Mesa Historical Society has started a new campaign to raise funds for the McKinney House museum. The “Buy a Brick” campaign allowing donors to support for the museum while also adding their story to the history of La Mesa. For $100, purchasers get an engravable brick which will be incorporated into a path at the McKinney House.
Currently, the house is open every Saturday (except holidays) from 1-4 p.m. Its free admission gives guests a chance to see what life was like in La Mesa in the early 1900s.
In order to expand its reach, the Society wants to be able to hold more programs in the yard around the house. Currently, it isn’t set up for that type of activity. To reach that goal, the Society has developed a new landscape plan that would allow for appropriately-sized events and programming. Proceeds from the Buy a Brick campaign will go toward the landscaping plan.
For more information, or to purchase a brick, visit lamesahistory.com.