Claire Williams, 16, organized a holiday celebration for 131 Alameda County families on Dec. 18, complete with gifts, Santa, elves and decorations, at the downtown Pleasanton Veterans Memorial Building. She has volunteered to help foster care children in the past with the "Foster A Dream" program so she knew there was more she could do locally as a Girl Scout Gold Award project.
"I wanted to provide them with some of the things that would make their immediate life better," said Williams, "a coat and a backpack full of school supplies."
As part of the project, Williams compiled a notebook with all the organizational details so others can continue with the event and make it a Pleasanton tradition. She is grateful to co-sponsors American Legion Post 237, the 68 Girl Scouts who helped with the event, Walmart stores and individuals who made donations. Some people saw the Winter Wonderland sign during the event, stopped in and made donations.
Foster children choose gifts in addition to coats, backpacks and school supplies.
British give to Axis
Members of the Tri-Valley chapter of Daughters of the British Empire ended their 2010 fundraising by presenting a check to Sue Compton, director of Axis Community Health. The women also donated more than 20 toys to the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department's Toys for Tots, sponsored a family through the Salvation Army's holiday drive, and donated to the British Home for Senior Citizens in Sierra Madre.
The DBE chapter meets monthly and encourages those with similar heritage and ancestry to join to help with fundraising activities, enjoy social interaction, and form long-lasting friendships. Contact Edith Caponigro at 462-1960.