City funding awarded to 8 of 13 groups that applied

City funding awarded to 8 of 13 groups that applied
Sean McGrath and Chris Carter help a participant load a basket with poultry and vegetables. Photo by Bianca Kaplanek

SOLANA BEACH — Only eight of the 13 organizations that applied for assistance through the Community Grant Program received funding for the upcoming year during the Dec. 11 meeting, but with help from a local school and possibly an advisory commission, the city could spread its $15,000 a little farther.

The Community Resource Center asked for and was awarded, for the fourth consecutive year, $5,000 for its Holiday Baskets Program that provides food, clothing, blankets and toys to low-income North County residents.

For the third consecutive year, Santa Fe Christian Schools offered to help fund organizations that serve the Eden Gardens community.

With $4,000 from the school and $1,000 from the city, La Colonia de Eden Gardens received the full amount it sought for its summer leadership program for teenagers.

The same partnership provided full funding for Casa de Amistad for a new program called Parents in Action, which seeks to empower parents of traditionally underrepresented students to become leaders in their families and help support their students’ academic success.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of San Dieguito also received full funding for its $4,700 request — $2,500 from Santa Fe Christian and $2,200 from the city — to help pay for college nights at the La Colonia branch.

Kids Korps USA sought $5,000 but was granted $4,000 — $1,500 from the city and $2,500 from Santa Fe Christian — for its summer volunteer camps for low-income children and teenagers from Eden Gardens.

The St. James and St. Leo Medical and Dental Program received $2,000 each from the city and the school, only $1,000 less than it was seeking to help diabetes patients.

The city granted the DelSol Lions Club the $1,500 it was asking for to help buy supplies for back-to-school backpacks for about 200 Solana Beach elementary school children.

BikeWalkSolana requested $4,400 for bike safety rodeos and a walkability seminar at Earl Warren Middle School that would encourage students to find ways to improve walking and biking on and around the campus.

Councilwoman Lesa Heebner said much of the request was for the seminar, which qualifies for state grant funds.

The organization received $800 from the city, primarily for helmets for those in need and other items for the bike rodeos.

Two groups did not receive money but council members plan to submit the requests to the Public Arts Advisory Commission for funding.

The theater school at North Coast Repertory Theater applied for a $5,000 grant to help produce “Seussical Jr.,” a musical performance that brings Dr. Seuss characters to life.

“I think that there’s more deserving things right now,” Mayor Tom Campbell said. “The North Coast Rep is a great program. … I love them but we’ve got … some needy children.”

SeaWeeders, an offshoot of the Solana Beach Garden Club, wanted $3,500 to help “rejuvenate” the landscaping around the post office.

“I think we could probably all agree that the post office needs to have a facelift and there’s no doubt that this group is obviously in a position to provide that,” Councilman Mike Nichols said. “I’d like to consider this another Public Arts Advisory Committee task to think about.”

For the past two years the commission fulfilled requests from the theater school.

Organizations that received no funding included A Ship in the Woods, which operates out of a scheduled-to-be-demolished house near Lomas Santa Fe Country Club. The group sought $5,000 to continue the program once the building is destroyed.

Also coming up empty-handed were Earl Warren Middle School, which applied for $1,400 to expand its garden, and Miracle League of San Diego, which requested $5,000 for various expenses.

“That whole (Earl Warren) campus is going to get completely redone in a year,” Councilman Dave Zito said. “I think it’s a great project. I really like it but I think it might be better served once the campus is redone. … I would encourage them to come back.”

Campbell was the only council member who considered allocating money to Miracle League, which provides children with special needs the opportunity to play baseball in an organized league.

“It’s truly amazing what they do,” Campbell said. “I feel very, very, very strongly about the Miracle League but no one else does.”

Zito said some items, such as $700 for a photographer, could likely be fulfilled by volunteers. Campbell acknowledged the organization does have some big sponsors, including the San Diego Padres.

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