The Auen Foundation

Grant supports expanded neurological services

The Neu­ro Vital­i­ty Cen­ter is expand­ing its facil­i­ties and its ser­vices, thanks, in part, to a grant from the Auen Foun­da­tion. The fam­i­ly foun­da­tion, which pri­mar­i­ly sup­ports char­i­ta­ble pro­grams and ser­vices aimed at meet­ing the social needs of mature adults and their fam­i­lies, pre­sent­ed the non­prof­it orga­ni­zaiton with a $30,000 grant to help open the Luhr & Clarise Jensen Exer­cise Ther­a­py Facil­i­ty. This addi­tion­al build­ing will increase the Neu­ro Vital­i­ty Center’s space by 3,000 square feet, and allow the Cen­ter to offer more com­pre­hen­sive ser­vices to peo­ple with stroke, trau­mat­ic brain injury (TBI) and oth­er neu­ro­log­i­cal diag­noses. “Sup­port from the Auen Foun­da­tion and oth­ers are pro­vid­ing us with an oppor­tu­ni­ty to expand and offer more neu­ro­log­i­cal ser­vices in a sin­gle set­ting,” said Bev­er­ly Greer, Neu­ro Vital­i­ty Cen­ter CEO. “Thanks to the gen­eros­i­ty of indi­vid­ual dona­tions and grant con­tri­bu­tions, we are able to con­tin­ue pro­vid­ing patients with exer­cise and ther­a­py pro­grams even after their insur­ance is exhaust­ed. Avoid­ing gaps in ser­vice reduces many patient’s recov­ery times and improves their qual­i­ty of life.” For more than 35 years, the Neu­ro Vital­i­ty Cen­ter, for­mer­ly the Stroke Recov­ery Cen­ter, has offered recre­ation, speech and exer­cise ther­a­py to help stroke and TBI vic­tims regain inde­pen­dence and improve their qual­i­ty of life. In recent years, the Cen­ter has also offered ser­vices to patients with Mul­ti­ple Scle­ro­sis and Parkinson’s Dis­ease. Ther­a­peu­tic reha­bil­i­ta­tion pro­grams address the phys­i­cal, psy­cho­log­i­cal, emo­tion­al and re-social­iza­tion needs of peo­ple with many forms of neu­ro­log­i­cal issues. Ser­vices at the cen­ter also extend to these patients’ fam­i­lies, who often seek coun­sel­ing, care­giv­ing skills and oth­er resources. “The Neu­ro Vital­i­ty Cen­ter helps sur­vivors of dibil­i­tat­ing injuries and dis­eases regain and main­tain skills. These valu­able ser­vices impact people’s lives by not only increas­ing their abil­i­ties but also build­ing con­fi­dence lev­els, which is a ben­e­fit that can­not be mea­sured,” said Catharine Reed, Senior Pro­gram Offi­cer of the Auen Foun­da­tion. The Neu­ro Vital­i­ty Cen­ter, is still locat­ed at 2800 East Ale­jo Road, Palm Springs. For more infor­ma­tion about the cen­ter, call 760–323-7676 or vis­it...
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Foundation gift will add large print books to library shelves

A $25,000 grant from the Auen Foun­da­tion will add more large print books to the Ran­cho Mirage Pub­lic Library’s per­ma­nent col­lec­tion. The gift was recent­ly pre­sent­ed to the Ran­cho Mirage Pub­lic Library Foun­da­tion, a non­prof­it orga­ni­za­tion that sup­ports the award-win­ning, inde­pen­dent City-man­aged library and its pro­grams. “We are delight­ed that the Auen Foun­da­tion chose to sup­port the Ran­cho Mirage Pub­lic Library Foun­da­tion,” said Diane Sagan, the organization’s chair­per­son. “This gen­er­ous gift will help the Ran­cho Mirage Pub­lic Library main­tain excel­lence in col­lec­tions, ser­vices and pro­grams.” “Large print books keep our community’s seniors read­ing, even when they expe­ri­ence changes in their vision,” said Sher­rie Auen, Pro­gram Direc­tor for the Auen Foun­da­tion. “No one should be denied the oppor­tu­ni­ty to read. It’s a part of life­long learn­ing that so many peo­ple enjoy.” Now cel­e­brat­ing the library’s 20th anniver­sary, the Ran­cho Mirage Pub­lic Library has been rec­og­nized as one of the busiest and most admired libraries of its size in Cal­i­for­nia. The library offers print pub­li­ca­tions for all ages, mul­ti­me­dia selec­tions, access to tech­nol­o­gy. Plus, enter­tain­ment and cul­tur­al enrich­ment pro­grams are part of the library’s reg­u­lar sched­ule. “The Ran­cho Mirage Pub­lic Library was built on com­mu­ni­ty part­ner­ships, and we are hap­py to be a part of what makes this a fine com­mu­ni­ty asset,” said Catharine Reed, senior pro­gram offi­cer for the Auen Foun­da­tion. The library has start­ed pur­chas­ing and pro­cess­ing a col­lec­tion that will include at least 1,500 new large print books with the Auen Foun­da­tion fund­ing. In recent years, pub­lish­ers have been active­ly pro­duc­ing more large print books in paper­back. This lighter, easy-to-read for­mat, improves the read­ing expe­ri­ence for those need­ing this type of assis­tance to main­tain the plea­sure of read­ing. “This is a tremen­dous gift that will have long term impact on the avail­abil­i­ty of large print books for our patrons who keep read­ing because of their com­fort with this for­mat,” said David Bryant, library direc­tor. “Each book we add will have a book­plate, not­ing that the vol­ume is avail­able because of the gen­eros­i­ty of the Auen Foun­da­tion.” All of the new large print books will be avail­able for check­out with a Ran­cho Mirage Pub­lic Library card. Cal­i­for­nia res­i­dents with a valid ID can receive a card through an easy reg­is­tra­tion process. Sea­son­al res­i­dents, show­ing proof of a Ran­cho Mirage address, will also be issued a free card. Out-of-state vis­i­tors are charged a mod­est card fee. The library is eager...
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Auen Foundation closes the gap on CVRM summer challenge

The Coachel­la Val­ley Res­cue Mis­sion met its first sum­mer fundrais­ing goal, thanks, in part, to a grant from the Auen Foun­da­tion. At the begin­ning of the sum­mer, the CVRM began an e-blast cam­paign titled “Open Your Heart 97 Day Chal­lenge.” The intent was to raise aware­ness of the scorch­ing sum­mer months that threat­en most of the Valley’s home­less and many impov­er­ished fam­i­lies. After the mis­sion dis­trib­uted the first email about this com­mu­ni­ty chal­lenge, an anony­mous donor came for­ward with its own chal­lenge: if the CVRM raised $25,000, they would match it, which would quick­ly raise $50,000 for the shel­ter. Addi­tion­al donors met the chal­lenge up to $10,000, and then the e-mail mes­sage caught the atten­tion of Catharine Reed, Senior Pro­gram Offi­cer for the Auen Foun­da­tion. The pri­vate, fam­i­ly foun­da­tion agreed to con­tribute the remain­ing $15,000 that com­plet­ed the match­ing chal­lenge and helped the CVRM pre­pare for the hot sum­mer months ahead. “Each sum­mer, the mis­sion faces chal­lenges that come with extreme heat,” said Dar­la Bur­kett, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of the CVRM. “A con­ver­sa­tion with Catharine about the e-blast and the match­ing grant brought com­pas­sion and a strong offer of help. CVRM and the com­mu­ni­ty we serve are sin­cere­ly grate­ful for the gen­eros­i­ty of the Auen Foun­da­tion and the oth­er donors that con­tributed to this suc­cess­ful fundrais­ing cam­paign.” Dur­ing the first two months of sum­mer, funds raised by the $50,000 chal­lenge pro­vid­ed more than 46,000 meals, 15,250 bed nights of shel­ter, and kept 26 home­less chil­dren off the streets. “We love an oppor­tu­ni­ty to part­ner with oth­er donors and make a sig­nif­i­cant impact quick­ly,” said Reed. As Sum­mer 2016 hit record tem­per­a­tures and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the CVRM went out in the com­mu­ni­ty look­ing for men, women and chil­dren still on the streets, they con­tin­ued the “Open Your Heart 97 Day Chal­lenge” through August. “Unfor­tu­nate­ly, there is always a need to serve our community’s home­less, said Bur­kett. “We may help one fam­i­ly off the streets just as anoth­er is faced with unfore­seen cir­cum­stances. In the sum­mer, com­mu­ni­ty needs and costs are great­ly increased, yet dona­tions gen­er­al­ly decrease, so we have to make an extra effort this time of year to ensure that our orga­ni­za­tion con­tin­ues to ful­fill its mis­sion of serv­ing those in need.” Found­ed in 1971, and locat­ed at 47470 Van Buren St. in Indio, the CVRM feeds, shel­ters, and cares for more than 250 clients each night. A 24-hour hot and...
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Grant Supports Dental Health for People Living with HIV/AIDS

Desert AIDS Project (D.A.P.) received a $25,000 grant from the Auen Foun­da­tion to pro­vide den­tal care to low-income seniors liv­ing with HIV/AIDS. The Auen Foun­da­tion grant was award­ed to D.A.P.’s Den­tal Clin­ic. Found­ed in 2008, the clin­ic has had an ongo­ing wait­ing list, and serves patients liv­ing at or below 400 per­cent of the fed­er­al pover­ty lev­el. “Most patients come to us after years and years with­out den­tal care and require inten­sive treat­ment plans requir­ing many vis­its to achieve sta­ble oral health,” said David Brinkman, CEO of D.A.P. “Although we recent­ly added staff to bet­ter accom­mo­date our long wait­ing list, we were still in need of sup­plies. The grant from the Auen Foun­da­tion will sup­port this, and help us com­plete com­plex den­tal plans for our local res­i­dents in need in a time­ly man­ner.” Last fall, D.A.P.’s Den­tal Clin­ic added a sec­ond full-time den­tist. With 1.2 FTE hygien­ists and sup­port staff, the clin­ic has already served 736 indi­vid­u­als this year putting the clin­ic on track to pro­vide den­tal care to a record num­ber of patients in 2016. “D.A.P. is pro­vid­ing a crit­i­cal ser­vice that is not eas­i­ly found,” said Catharine Reed, Pro­gram Direc­tor for the Auen Foun­da­tion, which is ded­i­cat­ed to enhanc­ing the over­all qual­i­ty of life of the aging pop­u­la­tion. “Many sur­vivors of HIV are now in their senior years, on a lim­it­ed income, and many do not have den­tal insur­ance. D.A.P.’s Den­tal Clin­ic will help these sur­vivors main­tain good oral health, which is nec­es­sary for their long-term health.” About 60 per­cent of the clients seen at D.A.P.’s Den­tal Clin­ic are at least 50-years-old, and most of them are long-time sur­vivors who have bat­tled HIV/AIDS for more than 20 years. The extend­ed life expectan­cy for HIV/AIDS has brought about a chal­lenge for those aging with the con­di­tion. Old­er peo­ple and those diag­nosed in late stages need a much high­er degree of care. D.A.P. serves our com­mu­ni­ty with pri­ma­ry and HIV-spe­cial­ty ser­vices, includ­ing med­ical care, case man­age­ment, and social ser­vices, includ­ing food, hous­ing, and coun­sel­ing. D.A.P. also pro­vides HIV pre­ven­tion edu­ca­tion and free and con­fi­den­tial HIV test­ing at dozens of com­mu­ni­ty test sites and events through its Get Test­ed Coachel­la Val­ley cam­paign. The non­prof­it also offers The DOCK, a sex­u­al health clin­ic, whose ser­vices include STD test­ing and treat­ment; PEP & PrEP edu­ca­tion and refer­ral to treat­ment; free and con­fi­den­tial HIV test­ing; and well woman exams. With new advances in...
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Foundation Continues Support of AAP Food Voucher Program

AIDS Assis­tance Pro­gram — Food Samar­i­tans (AAP) announced today that the Auen Foun­da­tion recent­ly award­ed a $25,000 grant to the orga­ni­za­tion to sup­port its food vouch­er pro­gram for low-income Coachel­la Val­ley res­i­dents who suf­fer from HIV/AIDS and oth­er chron­ic ill­ness­es. This is the 17th con­sec­u­tive year that the Auen Foun­da­tion has sup­port­ed this pro­gram. “Since we began giv­ing to orga­ni­za­tions in the Coachel­la Val­ley, AIDS Assis­tance Pro­gram – Food Samar­i­tans has stood out as an orga­ni­za­tion that ful­fills a basic need for some of our community’s most vul­ner­a­ble res­i­dents,” said Catharine Reed, Senior Pro­gram Offi­cer for the Auen Foun­da­tion. “Our entire grant direct­ly sup­ports client ser­vice, not admin­is­tra­tion costs. And because AAP receives a 6 per­cent dis­count from Stater Broth­ers off the val­ue of the pur­chased food vouch­ers, our grant is effec­tive­ly val­ued at 106 per­cent.” AIDS Assis­tance Pro­gram – Food Samar­i­tans was found­ed in 1991 to help the most at-risk mem­bers of the Greater Palm Springs com­mu­ni­ty – peo­ple who are low-income and com­pro­mised by HIV/AIDS. It recent­ly expand­ed its ser­vices to include peo­ple suf­fer­ing from can­cer, MS, heart or liv­er dis­ease, and oth­er chron­ic ill­ness­es. Its ongo­ing mis­sion is to ensure that all AAP clients can con­tin­ue to live their lives with dig­ni­ty and self-respect. “This kind of long-term sup­port from the Auen Foun­da­tion is not only cru­cial to help­ing us con­tin­ue to fund AAP, but demon­strates the kind of com­mit­ted part­ner­ships that we have been for­tu­nate to forge over the last twen­ty five years,” said Mark Anton, CEO and Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of AAP. “AAP does not receive fed­er­al or state finan­cial assis­tance, so gen­er­ous pri­vate dona­tions like this allow us to con­tin­ue to sup­port the peo­ple who need it most.” #  #...
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Auen Foundation Grant to Deliver Produce to Valley Seniors

With nutri­tious meals essen­tial to a healthy life, the Auen Foun­da­tion is pro­vid­ing a $50,000 grant to FIND Food Bank in sup­port of its sig­na­ture pro­gram, Project Pro­duce. The pro­gram pro­vides fresh fruits and veg­eta­bles to local res­i­dents in need of food assis­tance. “There is a vital rela­tion­ship between healthy eat­ing and a person’s well-being,” said Lisa Hous­ton, Pres­i­dent and CEO of FIND (Food in Need of Dis­tri­b­u­tion). “This gen­er­ous gift from the Auen Foun­da­tion will help deliv­er healthy, nutri­tious fruits and veg­eta­bles to our area’s seniors and oth­ers in need. Food secu­ri­ty is essen­tial to a person’s phys­i­cal and men­tal health. Dona­tions to FIND are tru­ly life-chang­ing and life-improv­ing.” The Auen Foun­da­tion gift will pro­vide approx­i­mate­ly 416,000 pounds of fresh pro­duce through­out 2016. FIND col­lects and stores donat­ed food and works with 100+ oth­er com­mu­ni­ty-based part­ners that dis­trib­ute food direct­ly to res­i­dents through neigh­bor­hood pantries, soup kitchens, low-income hous­ing com­mu­ni­ties, and home­less shel­ters. Through Project Pro­duce, FIND sup­ports part­ners that serve our senior res­i­dents via (free!) farm­ers’ mar­kets that encour­age par­tic­i­pants to make their own healthy selec­tions. “Fresh pro­duce is a life­line for peo­ple – espe­cial­ly seniors – who need nutri­tious food to con­tribute to their over­all qual­i­ty of life,” said Catharine Reed, Senior Pro­gram Offi­cer of the Auen Foun­da­tion. “Not wor­ry­ing about where a next meal will come from allows peo­ple to focus on oth­er impor­tant aspects of life, and means they will not have to choose between buy­ing med­ica­tion or healthy food,” said Sher­rie Auen, Pro­gram Direc­tor of the Auen Foun­da­tion. Draw­ing on the USDA’s “My Plate” rec­om­men­da­tions, Project Pro­duce ensures that at least half of the food dis­trib­uted through FIND is in the form of fresh fruits and veg­eta­bles. “Healthy food, includ­ing fresh pro­duce, comes at a sig­nif­i­cant cost,” said Hous­ton. “That’s why com­mu­ni­ty sup­port, like that of the Auen Foun­da­tion, is so impor­tant.” FIND and its part­ner agen­cies dis­trib­ute 10+ mil­lion pounds of food annu­al­ly to an aver­age 90,000 peo­ple each month. About 6 mil­lion pounds of the annu­al dis­tri­b­u­tion is high­ly per­ish­able fresh pro­duce, adding to a high cost of cold stor­age and reli­able trans­porta­tion, which the Auen Foun­da­tion grant will help off­set. For more infor­ma­tion about FIND Food Bank, locat­ed in Indio, vis­it FINDFoodBank.org or call 760–775-3663. # #...
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