Community Heroes is a school program grooming young philanthropists and social activists with the inspiration, skills and tools to be effective and positive agents of change. Our platform makes it easy and fun to give back, culminating in our Annual Day of Giving that brings together families of all ages to serve dozens of local non-profits.

Program Impact Study: An interesting qualitative study of our pilot program was conducted in 2014/15 by educator, qualitative researcher, and innovator in real-world learning, Suzanne Lettrick, M.Ed., Ed.M. (Harvard), who observed and interviewed a sample of participating students, compared to a control group. She looked at how participating students in terms of how their “empathy” was being engaged, how their exposure and experience within the program helped develop ideas and strategies out in the world, and how explicit instruction and compassion practice helped develop a “compassionate ecosystem.” An abstract of the study can be viewed here: PDF of summary

Project Impact: Student-driven projects throughout the year cover a breadth of issue areas, including:

Support for Homeless and Shelter Residents

Day of Giving Wonderbag team meal prep for shelters.

Benefiting organizations including: Downtown Streets Team, Homeward Bound of Marin, St. Vincent de Paul Free Dining Room, Ritter Center, California Re-entry Institute and Marin County Veterans Services, Center for Domestic Peace

  • Assembly/distribution of 3,000+ personal hygiene kits
  • Hot gourmet meals prepared and served to shelter residents
  • Mother’s day gift bags for 75 women in local domestic violence shelters
  • Halloween costume and decoration drives for youth shelter residents  
  • Socktober sock drives collecting 3000+ pairs of socks

Environment: Clean-up and Habitat Restoration

In collaboration with Canal Alliance, Marin County Parks, Downtown Streets Team, All One Ocean

  • Community garden clean-up in the Canal
  • Cleaned over 50 acres of parkland and planted over 5,000 native plants  
  • Cleaned up downtown San Rafael, removing litter from public areas
  • Made 4 ocean clean up stations and installed them at Las Gallinas creek and local beaches  

Kids Helping Kids

Book drive

Donations directed to UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals SF/Oakland, St. Vincent School for Boys, Global Book Exchange, Fairfax-San Anselmo Children’s Center, Fire Victims

  • 600+ superhero capes and 35 blankets made for kids battling childhood terminal illnesses
  • Collected school supplies for 60 foster youth and 5 classrooms at residence school
  • Collecting 1000+ books to rebuild school library after Lake County fire
  • Collected 100 books and sorted over 1,500 books distributed to underprivileged students
  • Made 12 reading mats out of recycled t-shirts for preschoolers

Connecting with Seniors

Collaborating with Alma Via Assited Living and Senior Access

  • Crafted handmade paper flowers and visited local seniors to interview and hear life stories
  • Refurbished 100 art canvases for seniors to do art projects with Alzheimer patients
  • 60 good luck care packages assembled and delivered to local seniors

Helping Animals

Humane Society visit

Through Wildcare, Marin Humane Society and All One Ocean

  • Raised money for Wildcare with a student driven art show
  • Handmade 350 pet chew toys for Marin Humane Society

Community Building

  • Gathering and sharing of local immigrant stories with Canal Alliance
  • Making cards and artwork for kids at UCSF SF/Oakland along with Homeward Bound’s Oma Village residents
  • Connecting Marin Academy high school students as mentors to Short School elementary students
  • Our inspirational Day of Giving connects students from preschool to high school, from public and private, bringing together groups that normally wouldn’t meet to do meaningful projects together

The smiles and amount of joyful community spirit spread throughout the year!