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Latest Jefferson Awards News
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East Bay Non-Profit Recycles Discarded Crayons For Hospitalized Children
Most colorful crayons handed out at restaurants get used a few times, or in some cases, only once before they are discarded. One Bay Area man is making sure that crayons from all over the country don't just go to waste.
'NERDS' Group Supports Students Striving For STEM Careers
Diana Lizarraga guides more than 100 minority and low income students into STEM careers.
Marin Restaurant Owner Feeds Those In Need
SAN ANSELMO (KPIX 5) A lot of college grads know what they want to do. Heidi Krahling didn't. "I knew what I didn't want to do," she remembered. "I didn't want to work for a big corporation." But she loved to cook and feed people. So she bought...
Oakland Non-Profit Changes Lives With Service And Support
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) Fewer students are truant , kids are reading at a higher level and more parents are taking an active role in their children's education. These positive changes can be attributed to Chris Stoner-Mertz, who has dedicated her life to...
Volunteer Network Has East Bay Kids 'Succeeding By Reading'
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) When an East Bay pastor decided to give up preaching, it wasn't because he was ready to retire. Instead, this week's Jefferson Award winner is helping second graders improve their reading. Randy Roth couldn't believe that 60% of...
Peninsula Teenager Supports Filipino Orphans
SAN MATEO (KPIX 5) Summer vacation has just begun, and a Peninsula teenager could be relaxing, going to summer camp, or taking it easy. Instead, Isabela Acenas is planning a trip overseas, so she can make a difference for others. Acenas visited...
Solar-Powered Filters Provide Clean Water For Remote Villages
SAN CARLOS (KPIX 5) When a Bay Area man saw people in remote villages around the world living without clean drinking water, he knew that had to change. But he had no idea how much support he'd find right here at home. "Just with a little...
Tech Expert Teaches Computer Basics To East Bay Families
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) A nonprofit survey shows about 40% of Oakland public school students have no access to computers or high speed internet at home. So an East Bay man has devoted his life to bringing them up to speed. Domingo Vazquez was once a...
Volunteer Coalition Revives San Jose Waterways
SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) Steve Holmes picked his way across Los Gatos Creek, wearing waders to keep dry. On the far bank, he used a long-handled grabber to pick trash from the waterside plants and drop them quickly into a trash bag he carried in the other...
Kids' Track Meet Celebrates Health And Fitness
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) Thousands of low-income children are learning to live a healthy lifestyle. Some are even pursuing Olympic-sized dreams, thanks to this week's Jefferson Award winner. More than 1,000 kids aged 4 through 18 paraded into UC...
Teenage Volunteers Teach Technology To Senior Citizens
SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) Ying Ying laughed, gesturing at her iPad. "My daughter's boyfriend gave it to me, you know why!" In truth, she already liked the young man. And when it came to Ying Ying learning how to use the iPad, the kids gave it a...
Cancer Survivor Supports Others In The Fight Of Their Lives
SAN JOSE (KPIX 5) About a dozen cancer survivors circled their arms as a qigong instructor quietly called out instructions. Teresa Heger takes the class to relax, as she fights her second bout with breast cancer. "When you're first diagnosed,...
School Volunteer Sparks Kids' Excitement For Tech Learning
SUNNYVALE (KPIX 5) An energetic volunteer has been helping a Sunnyvale school give many of its students their first taste of technology. Pierre Cintra has no children at Lakewood Elementary School in Sunnyvale. But on campus, he's known as a...
Company Donates Profits For The Greater Good
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) Who starts a business intent on giving away the profits? This week's Jefferson Award winners not only started the business, they've been giving away the profits for more than two decades now. Twenty-five years ago, Mike Hannigan...
Newark Program Breaks Through The Silence For Deaf Adults
NEWARK (KPIX 5) Life can be quiet and lonely for people who are deaf. But this week's Jefferson Award winner is opening doors to a brighter, fuller world. Imelda Rivas has seen a transformation in her 25-year-old son, Antonio. "Before, it was,...
Wilderness Education Program Teaches Life Lessons Too
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) Learning to rock climb, kayak, or backpack through the wilderness certainly sounds adventurous, but trips like these can provide some of life's greatest lessons. And that's the goal of this week's Jefferson Award winner: to teach...
No-Kill Cat Shelter Saves Hundreds Of Feline Lives
REDWOOD CITY (KPIX 5) Remember Smurf, the abused purple kitten? He recovered from his injuries and has a new adoptive home because of a Redwood City animal shelter. Its founder is this week's Jefferson Award winner. Smurf was dyed purple and...
'Citizens Against Homicide' Supports Victims' Families
SAN RAFAEL (KPIX 5) This week's Jefferson Award winner helped start "Citizens Against Homicide" so that victims and their families would have a voice. Jan Miller's been helping murder victims' families for 22 years... because she is one of those...
Inclusive Club Blends Special Education With General Student Classes
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) This week's Jefferson Award winner is a San Francisco high student who has a lot to teach when it comes to kids who feel left out at school. In fact, she gives it a special name. Whether it's music or money lessons, Lauren...
Prison Coding Class Gives Inmates Skills And Hope
SAN QUENTIN (KPIX 5) Imagine teaching someone to write computer code when they don't own a computer.. and even if they did, they can't get online. This week's Jefferson Award winner isn't letting those challenges stop her, if it means prison inmates...
San Francisco Teacher Shares Cambodian Cultural Traditions
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) Marlai Ouch was a teenager when she and her family escaped the brutality of Cambodia's Khmer Rouge in the 1980s. She started a new life in San Francisco, but realized something was missing. So she started teaching the Cambodian...
Hidden Genius Project Trains Next Generation Tech Entrepreneurs
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) The next big tech idea could be percolating right now in an Oakland classroom. And chances are good it's because this week's Jefferson Award winner recognized the "hidden genius" behind it. At six feet nine, Brandon Nicholson...
Farming Project Harvests Hope For Oakland Kids
OAKLAND (KPIX 5) She is a Navy veteran who returned home to Oakland, and realized she could really make a difference among at-risk children. What she did next shows why she is this week's Jefferson Award winner. Kelly Carlisle looked at high crime...
Family Dog Rescue Pairs Dogs At Risk With Loving Homes
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) Angela Padilla has a special connection to her dogs. "Shelter dogs saved my life when I was struggling with cancer," she explained. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002, she says volunteering with shelter dogs gave her a...
Menlo Park Center Teaches Fitness, Arts, And Service
MENLO PARK (KPIX 5) He wanted to be a pro football player and a rock star. But then a debilitating injury sparked a new life of community service. People often come to Gary Riekes wanting to learn one thing -- but they end up pursuing many...
Counselor Answers Crisis Calls Through The Night
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) When there's a crisis in the middle of the night, who can you call? In San Francisco, there's a hotline where someone is ready and willing to listen. This week's Jefferson Award winner is one of the counselors who's been...
SF Pediatrician Works To Heal The Effects Of Childhood Trauma
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) Research shows childhood trauma can lead to lifelong health problems. That's why a Bay Area doctor is creating a national model of care Dr. Nadine Burke Harris is revolutionizing pediatric medicine in the middle of San...
Photos: Jefferson Award Winners
The winners of the 2015 Jefferson Awards were honored Wednesday night at San Francisco's Herbst Theatre.
Full Circle Fund Links Non-Profits With Expertise And Resources
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) When a tech entrepreneur wanted to turn his efforts to the non-profit world, he -- of course -- launched his own start-up non-profit. And that brought giving back "Full Circle." Josh Becker had a law degree and an MBA from...
Startup Accelerator Puts Tech To Work For Good
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) What do you get when you combine technology's best minds with the good work of nonprofits? You can change the world, according to this week's Jefferson Award winners. Shannon Farley had helped start two nonprofits. Kevin...
Minority Students Thrive With Support From Peninsula College Fund
REDWOOD CITY (KPIX 5) After 30 years in advertising, this week's Jefferson Award winner decided to go back to teaching. That decision both opened his eyes.. and opened the door to college for more than 100 kids in the Bay Area. As one of seven...
Police Officer Raises Thousands To Buy Bikes For Tykes
SAN LEANDRO (KPIX 5) He is a full-time police officer who's no stranger to burglars and shoplifters. But this time of year, he's known as the Bike Cop, or Santa Louie. "Just the excitement and expression on their faces, it means so much to see...
Firefighters' Toy Program Delivers Holiday Cheer To Thousands Of Kids
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) Twelve years ago, Sally Casazza walked away from her full time job with a big corporation, only to find herself running something much bigger: she chairs the San Francisco Firefighters' Toy Program, a holiday toy drive that...
Urban Ed Academy Sets Boys On A New Path To Success
SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) Some remember him as a deputy chief of staff to former Mayor Gavin Newsom. But others see him as the Ultimate Godfather. And he's turning boys into young responsible young men in San Francisco's Bayview. Thanks to Dwayne...
East Bay Nurse Supports Children Left Behind By Nurses Who Die Young
Shekhiynah Larks was 15 when she and her younger sister and brother had to leave their home in Oakland and move to Texas to live with her aunt and uncle. Their mother Charm, a nurse and single mom, was sick. In December of 2011, she told her friend...
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