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Mama’s Kitchen’s Diabetes Program Gets a $50k Boost

Plus more good news from Classy, the Living Coast Discovery Center, the San Diego Rescue Mission, and McAlister Institute

Mama’s Kitchen Executive Director Alberto Cortés and Executive Chef Jason Martin with Justin Haskard, Katey Cabrales, and Norma Batchelder of Sun Life Financial. Photo courtesy of Sun Life Financial

San Diego-based Mama’s Kitchen received a $50,000 grant from financial services company Sun Life U.S. to bolster its diabetes management meal program. Mama’s Kitchen was one of five organizations across the country recognized through Sun Life’s Team Up Against Diabetes grant program. In February, Mama’s Kitchen launched an initiative to provide medically-tailored meals and nutrition counseling to San Diegans with diabetes, on top of its longtime efforts to feed local men, women, and children affected by HIV, cancer, and other critical illnesses. Mama’s Kitchen hopes to enroll 130 people in the diabetes program by 2021.


Classy staffers on a week-long trip to Johannesburg, South Africa


A cohort of employees from local fundraising software company Classy who raised $70,000 for Johannesburg, South Africa-based youth organization Grassroot Soccer recently got to see their hard work in action. The group traveled to Johannesburg to meet with Grassroot Soccer coaches to learn more about their career journeys and offer suggestions to support their professional and personal development. They also played in an 11-on-11 soccer game. The trip was the culmination of the company’s annual company-wide fundraiser, ClassyGives. 


The Living Coast Discovery Center received a government grant to fund field trips and educational programs


The Living Coast Discovery Center received an $85,990 grant from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to support a variety of programs, including field trips and refuge-based activities at the Sweetwater Marsh on the San Diego Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The grant will allow kids from underserved communities to participate at no cost in Living Coast’s interactive field trip, Refuge Living Lab, and its Sweetwater Safari program, which allows visitors to explore the refuge trails, use scientific tools, and learn about local plants and wildlife. 

“Our partnership with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has enabled us to provide local students with a unique and meaningful educational experience that really builds upon what they learn in the classroom,” said Ben Vallejos, executive director of the Living Coast Discovery Center.


An anonymous donor recently gifted half a million dollars to the San Diego Rescue Mission. The San Diego Rescue Mission plans to use the money to renovate the lobby of its building, refresh the outside, remodel its emergency shelter, and support job training, church partnerships and other initiatives. 


McAlister Institute’s seventh annual 5K Walk for Sobriety brought in more than $77,000 to fund programs and services for those who have been impacted by addiction. Participants of all ages joined the 5K Aug. 25 to raise funds for addiction treatment services and to increase awareness, fight stigma, and support the power of recovery. 


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