The Town Crier Holiday Fund was launched in 2000 to raise funds for small hands-on non-profits in Silicon Valley, particularly those serving families and children. Most of the organizations selected use many volunteers, and maintain a high level of efficiency in percentage of funds which actually touch the lives of the needy. The Holiday Fund raised about $50,000 in its first year and nine organizations were the first beneficiaries. Year by year new groups were selected to share in the funds. All contributions to the Holiday Fund are 100% tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. Silicon Valley Community Foundation (SVCF), based in Mountain View, is our fiscal partner and provides tax receipts to donors who contribute to the fund. The Los Altos Town Crier, as its contribution to this annual effort, pays all promotional, advertising and other administrative fees. SVCF also handles all on-line credit card transactions for the Town Crier Holiday Fund. The Town Crier Holiday Fund uses the model followed by many fundraising efforts. Each year the campaign is launched with significant up-front grants from foundations and individuals which in turn has usually been more than matched each year by community donors.
Since its launch in 2000, the number of groups supported by the Holiday Fund has grown steadily to a total of 20 in various locations throughout Silicon Valley. The $1.8 million has been carefully invested supporting specific activities with measurable results in these groups.
"It is important for a civil society to support non-profits by volunteering and by contributing money. I learned long ago that I am not comfortable asking people to contribute money. Fortunately, the annual Town Crier Holiday Fund does the difficult part for us. All we have to do is write a check, which I am happy to do each year because of the many local organizations the fund serves and supports."
Dr. Richard Henning
Foothill College Celebrity Forum Founder