The Gifts that Keep Giving: 12 Days Of Giving with 12 Local Leaders in Central Sonoma County

What role do after school programs have? Well, let me tell you, as a daughter of a single parent, after school programs saved me. Aside from keeping me busy, these programs mattered because I was socializing and learning, and I also gained valuable work experience. Sometimes you can even become an intern rather than a participant and that can add to your resume to get jobs that will help you grow professionally. You can also use this experiences as part of your college applications. As someone who participated in after school programs and an educator, I strongly believe in the power of these programs. In particular the Boys and Girls Club of Central Sonoma County is important to me because it has had an impact on low-income and Latino youth, serving 7,000 kids at 39 different clubs from Golden Gate Bridge to Cloverdale, California.

The After School Programs served over 3,000 kids every day. The Summer School Program serves approximately 1,100 kids every summer, and Tomorrow’s Leaders Today has over 200 High School Juniors from all over the County participating in this program and also provides services via  REACH  a Juvenile Hall Mentorship Program. The Boys and Girls Club of Central Sonoma County has over 200 employees that work within these 4 programs, our largest programs are the after school clubs at 39 different places.

It is an honor to be among the 12 Local Leaders chosen to participate in the 12 Days of Giving with 12 Local Leaders to support the Great Futures Club, which helps fund the Boys and Girls Club of Central Sonoma County with monthly donations. These 12 days, December 1st through  the 12th are the kick-off for the fundraising campaign specifically to fund the Great Futures Club.

The 12 local leaders are heavily involved in the community and/or hold an elected position and want to create awareness about the support and services that the BGCCSC offers to the community. These local leaders are also committed and understand the role of after school programs and how these promote a love for education. Other local leaders include, Jack Tibbetts current Santa Rosa Vice Mayor, Herman J. Hernandez Chair of Los Cien, Chris Rogers newly elected Santa Rosa City Councilmember, Jen Klose President of the  Santa Rosa City Schools Board, Sonoma County Supervisors Lynda Hopkins (5th District) and James Gore (4th District), Dom Fopolli Windsor Towncouncil Vice-Mayor, Carlos Chavez owner of Chavez Family Cellar, Gabe Kearny from the Petaluma City Council, Marcos Suarez a Latino Community Leader, and Melanie Bagby, Cloverdale City Councilmember.

While I have never been a participant, I do support the Boys and Girls Club of Central Sonoma County. I have worked over the years with similar programs. I’m using my platform at a trustee for the Santa Rosa Junior College and as an educator to create awareness and raise funds for a program that serves a high percentage of Latinx students. This organization also hires a high number of Latinx college students to lead programming and mentor these students. Join us in making a difference for our future generations!

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Mariana Martinez

Mariana Martinez

Mariana G. Martinez, PhD, is the eldest of three and the first in her family to earn a high school diploma and a higher education. She was raised by immigrant parents that encouraged her to get an education so that one day she could work as a secretary and not in a physically laboring job like the fields. Mariana has been an advocate in the field of education for almost 2 decades. Her love and passion in education began as Senior in high school interning at a local elementary school. Currently Mariana is the Research Coordinator for the McNair Scholar Program, a federally funded program that serves first generation and historically low income students pursue the next of their educational goals, at Sonoma State University. She is also a Lecturer in the Chican@ and Latin@ Studies Department.

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