Where’s Sheryl? Celebrating Bill and the Ripple Effects of First Funding in Pescadero

By Sheryl Young, San Mateo County Program Director

“Please thank Bill! He funded us $2,500 for the first summer club for children in Pescadero – the start of so many good things!”

Logan Payne was a new young teacher 40 years ago, who wanted to help her community. That initial investment of $2,500 brought together a group of enthusiastic young women who taught language arts, math and science to 30 farmworker children.

Over the past 40 years, these women and others have continued to operate a thrift shop and organize bake sales to receive donations from neighbors, continuing to create opportunities for hundreds of children to learn and explore the world.

Bill always says, “Find ’em and fund ’em – find the right people with good ideas, and invest in them.”

The ripple effect of this through the years in Pescadero has been the creation of South Coast Children’s Services, PUENTE, church sponsored programs, and engagement from the schools and community volunteers.

 

 

Recently, Puente held its annual Fall Harvest Appreciation, and over 250 children and adults attended to celebrate its work. As one of Puente’s earliest funders, Bill Somerville and PVF were honored and recognized for supporting Puente’s many innovative ideas over the years: adult, youth, and children’s programs, including paying for books and school supplies for college students, summer internships for youth, dental services for families, and Mexican dance classes for children.

photo from Puente de la Costa Sur (PUENTE)

“Bill believed in us when no one else did, and he encouraged us to dream,” said Rita Mancera, Executive Director at Puente.

Puente is a catalyst for inclusive new solutions and opportunities in the San Mateo County South Coast community and beyond. Puente has touched almost everyone’s life on the coast – as a donor, partner, volunteer, staff or board member, and participant.  We are proud to be a partner with this organization, which will celebrate its 20th anniversary next year!

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