November 20, 2016

Past Presenters

April 2017

The Awesome Spot PlaygroundThe Awesome Spot Playground, is designed to be a socially inclusive and sensory integrated play space designed specifically to break down barriers that keep children, siblings, adults and grandparents from participating in play with each other. Those typically left on the sidelines due to barriers include persons with disabilities, individuals on the autism spectrum and those with moderate to severe sensory processing disorder. As there is nothing like this in our region, it will be a major regional draw, bringing in people from all around the State. This project has been the recipient of quite a bit of media attention in the past few months (Modesto Bee, KCRA, national news outlets) For the past year, a small group of grassroots community advocates including a mother of a child with physical disabilities, local design professionals, and a Clinical Director with Central Valley Autism Project, have been working tirelessly to create a vision for the Awesome Spot Playground. Children with disabilities are one of the largest underserved minority groups in our nation. This playground will change that. With over 16% of our local population of children 5 and up having some sort of disability, we know that this will be a special place for these children and their families. The generous grant monies provided by Stanislaus Soup will be add to the capital campaign and fundraising efforts currently underway. These funds will be applied toward purchase and installation of the playground.

Family Promise (Winner): Our organization works with local congregations to provide emergency shelter and housing rehabilitation to homeless families. Families are sheltered with volunteer churches, and work with our case managers to achieve housing, employment and financial independence. Homelessness is an immediate and ongoing problem in our community. Few organizations, however, take a holistic approach to families, keeping all members together while working to quickly move them towards stable housing and employment. Our organization has achieved a 90% success rate, and the average stay in the program is less than 120 days. Funds will be used to fund housing for our families and programs aimed to help them achieve employment and housing stabilization

School of Recording Arts and Music: This is an after school program for grades 2 through 8. It will introduce basic music skills including rhythm, theory, and introduction to instruments. Students will learn how to write and develop songs, basic recording techniques, how to interview people for radio, how to construct Public Service announcements and record them. They will be introduced to live sound learning about amps and microphones. Stanislaus County needs good, positive after school programs. Kids need to know how to communicate and work together towards a common goal. They need a place they can feel safe to explore and be creative. Modesto Sound offers this in an on-going class throughout the school year. Modesto Sound is a non profit organization and relies on grants and donations to run our programs. Funding from Stanislaus Soup will help us keep our goal of reaching out to the community with this program. The School of Recording Arts and Music is a new program at Modesto Sound. We hope to start our first class in February and continue it until the end of the school year. We would be honored to share our progress at an upcoming SOUP!

South Modesto Partnership Teacher Celebration: The aim of the South Modesto Teacher Celebration is to strengthen relationships amongst South Modesto neighborhood leaders, and South Modesto school’s teachers and administrators that serve our community. We do this by inviting the neighborhood leaders, teachers and administrators to share a meal where we celebrate their contributions and service to our community, and ensure school partners are aware of how to connect with community leaders. Building relationships amongst neighborhood leaders and the education system leaders and teachers that serves our children and families is crucial to improving educational outcomes in our community. We believe that through strengthening relationships and communication between our neighborhood leaders and our community’s teachers will find opportunities to partner that will ultimately improve outcomes for our children. The funding will be used to pay for expenses related to the Teacher Celebration Lunch such as catering, small gifts of appreciation for teachers, and promotional materials. The event is scheduled for the beginning of 2017/2018 school year.

November 2016

Special Needs In My City (Winner) is an online resource for families raising individuals with special needs here in Stanislaus. We provide community resources, events and exclusive interviews with special needs care physicians for families. Healthy and educated families are the pillars of a strong community. With over 13,000 students in special education in Stanislaus, our families need help on a daily basis in knowing what is available in their communities to help their children thrive and for parents to not feel alone on this complex journey. This online platform offers families that needed support and information. We will build a tool on the website that allows Spanish-speaking families in Stanislaus to also have access to this important community information.

Modesto Sound Our Job Circle Program combines youth arts education with music technology services, and is taught by industry professionals in a real recording studio. We provide youth with an exciting hands-on educational experience that increases the sought after skills of creativity, communication, teamwork, and leadership. Stanislaus County needs more quality after school programs.

Modesto Full Story News’ mission is to serve the community with the most extensive news coverage that the Sacramento based media does not feel they need to report on. Our goal is to promote ALL views on the issues and welcome any leads that you would like to see investigated and reported on. There are a lot of things that happen in our community that do not get reported in the major media (including the Modesto Bee). A truly Modesto based news source could help reduce crime by making the community aware of problems and how to help. Funding would be used to boost promotion of Modesto Full Story News and pay for internships for student writers. These internships would bring in more points of view as well as the ability to cover more stories. They would also help Journalism Students to build their experience and portfolio for when they graduate and start looking to begin their career.