While the restaurants have expressed their appreciation, the surprised families on the receiving end are equally as thankful. North County Cares works with local school districts to select deserving families. According to Debbie Wickman, the Family and Community Outreach Liaison for the Oceanside Unified School District, the families receiving restaurant gift cards are selected according to staff recognition of special needs or circumstances. Some families have students attending the Migrant Education and English Language Learner summer school programs, while the majority have been distributed to supplement the food offered through the Tuesday/Thursday food distributions for the families receiving free or reduced meals. “Everyone has been so appreciative of the support these gift cards have provided!” explains Wickman.
The program has launched a coinciding GoFundMe Campaign which hopes to raise an additional $20,000 in grassroot funding. These community contributions have the ability to benefit an additional 650 families and 16 – 20 local restaurants. Please visit the North County Cares website to learn more about the program. If you would like to either participate in the program as a restaurant or distributor or be considered to receive support, please contact the Oceanside or Vista Chambers.
About North County Cares
North County Cares is a collaborative effort designed by the Oceanside Chamber of Commerce, the Vista Chamber of Commerce and the San Diego North Economic Development Council for the purpose of supporting both families in need and North County restaurants facing economic hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Contributors are encouraged to support local families and restaurants by donating to the Oceanside Chamber of Commerce Foundation. In turn, the money collected is used to purchase gift cards from participating chamber member restaurants in both Oceanside and Vista. The gift cards are then distributed to the Vista Unified School District, the Oceanside Unified School District and any other philanthropic organizations and used to provide meals for struggling families.
Founded more than 40 years ago, Genentech is a leading biotechnology company that discovers, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines to treat patients with serious and life-threatening medical conditions. The company, a member of the Roche Group, has headquarters in South San Francisco, California. For additional information about the company, please visit http://www.gene.com.
Recently, Genentech and the Genentech Foundation announced their charitable commitment of $42 million to help provide relief and recovery for those suffering from the COVID-19 pandemic. With the economic and healthcare inconsistencies recognized, Genentech is working closely with community leaders and groups to identify the greatest areas of need. They hope to build resiliency and address critical emerging equity gaps especially within low-income households and communities of color. Their forward-looking giving framework directs funds on a national, regional and local level in three specific areas:
- Critical Health Needs
- Strengthening Schools
- The Genentech Foundation has invested in California Schools creating more equitable access to distance learning for low-income students and providing delivery of critical services including food assistance and mental healthcare.
- Grassroots Community Supports
- Resources have been delivered to community foundations, food banks and regional relief efforts.
To learn more about Genentech’s corporate and charitable giving, please visit their Giving page. Additional information on Genentech’s efforts related to the COVID-19 pandemic can be found on their COVID-19 response page.