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SAF Awards Grants To Sonora High, WATCH, and Columbia Elementary

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Sonora, CA — Money is coming for local efforts and projects thanks to gifts from the Sonora Area Foundation and its donors.

In April, musician Todd Schroeder announced to the audience at his annual Young Artist Grant benefit concert that he had been performing under the same auditorium lights since he was a Sonora High School senior in 1984. It was time for an upgrade, and the Sonora Area Foundation helped launch a campaign to raise the $59,000 needed for the first two phases of the project. A followup campaign has been launched to raise the estimated $60,000 needed for Phase 3.

In addition, WATCH Resources has received a $50,000 grant to purchase a transportation van. The organization provides services to community members with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Watch currently operates two minivans, one with the capability of accommodating one person in a wheelchair and two other passengers, and a second that can transport up to five passengers.

All of its buses are over a decade old, but the bigger challenge is that all drivers of the buses must possess a Commercial Driver’s License.  WATCH notes that it is nearly impossible to find drivers who have the needed credentials.

Having a passenger van that can accommodate ten passengers will enable WATCH to transport participants to community-based activities six days per week.  The type of van being purchased only requires the driver to possess a regular operator’s Driver’s License.

WATCH Director Clint Bower says, “WATCH Resources, Inc. is extremely grateful to the Sonora Area Foundation for gathering donations that will enable WATCH to purchase a new 10-passenger van to be used for increasing access to the community for WATCH participants.”

Also, young musicians at Columbia Elementary will receive an equipment upgrade. A $29,000 grant was awarded from the Griggs Music Fund at SAF to purchase new instruments for the music program. The check was delivered by SAF CEO Darrell Slocum to Columbia music teacher Diane Ditler (pictured).

  • SHS Lighting Project Donors
  • Watch Resources Donors