Seedlings Planting Joy. Growing Hope. All while having a bit of fun.

Hope Beyond the Bay

Delivering Hope and Joy

NorCal Support

On December 23rd, members of the Boy Scouts delivered 5,000 gifts from our warehouse in San Jose four hours north to Chico. With the impressive direction of Paradise organizers, they set up shop in the Chico High School gym, enlisting the help of local volunteers--many of them Camp Fire victims themselves--to direct the flow of families. Families arrived, showed ID, and were guided through the "store by “shoppers” who helped them find the items they most needed and wanted. Because of this multi-community effort, approximately 900 families received gifts. Family Giving Tree’s contributions were sponsored by the amazing donors who gave to our Giving Tuesday campaign--a big thank you to all of our donors and volunteers who went the extra mile (or 200 miles, as the Boy Scouts did)

Dean McCully, Troop Leader, was astonished by the outpouring of community support, particularly from children who had lost everything: “Most of the Paradise volunteer kids still have virtually nothing, yet they almost all turned down our offers of gifts until the end of the day when they were certain other kids received gifts first. Parents told us story after story of how their fire-affected kids have been going around at schools and sharing backpacks/supplies/clothes to kids who have even less than they have... The Paradise fires are somehow building some incredibly generous future leaders.”

In November 2018 almost 14,000 Butte County residences were destroyed by the Camp Fire. Four months later, the devastation persists. Public and private lots need to be cleared of debris and declared safe before any construction can take place, assuming the displaced owners have the financial resources to rebuild from the ground up. If you’re interested in supporting the victims of the fire, we recommend looking into United Way of Northern California (financial donations) and the https://www.nvcf.org/ (financial and vehicle donations, volunteer opportunities).

Staff Feature

Evelyn Huynh: But Who Leads the Drive Leaders?

As FGT’s Drive Leader Coordinator, Evelyn Huynh has the task of recruiting, equipping, and supporting our 1,000+ Drive Leaders. She’s been involved with FGT for many years, first as a Drive Leader, then a volunteer, then officially joining the staff in the late summer of 2018. Her favorite thing about her job: Getting to know all the different personalities of the staff and Drive Leaders.

In her free time, Evelyn is involved with Silicon Valley Shakespeare as their resident photographer, a company dedicated to bringing accessible live theater to the South Bay. Throughout August 2019, you can catch her as an actor bringing the role of Green Snake to life in SVS’s production of The White Snake. Presale (ends April 1st) tickets for The White Snake can be purchased here: http://svs.vbotickets.com/event//32725

Bobaholics, Milpitas

A Haiku by Jessica

Boba, Oh Boba

The chewy bites of heaven

Submerged in green tea

Ordering Experience: 4 Bubbles - While FGT’s large order must have been a curveball, these boba experts rose to meet the challenge, filling our order directly from the spreadsheet we use to collect everyone’s requests. After we picked the food up, we took inventory and found that 1 drink and 1 food item had been missed, but they were very nice and jumped on getting those fulfilled right away.

Taste Factor: 4 Bubbles - The Andrada was tropically tasty. At 50% sweet, it was sweet enough without overpowering the aroma of the tea itself. The Genmaicha Milk Tea offered an unexpected, but delicious flavor that warrants further investigation. The sampler came with a full meal’s worth of food, but the taste wasn’t anything particularly special, though the value is hard to beat

Coziness Factor: 5 Bubbles - While we have to bring the boba back to the FGT office, the environment of Bobaholics was incredibly inviting. Plush couches, warm, earthy-toned decor, and even the wonderful scents of their premium teas brought out some majorly comfy vibes. Maybe we should host our next all-staff meeting here?

Overall: 4 Bubbles - For their excellent service, tasty tea, and cute decor.


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