Sonoma Raceway to Donate $233,000 to Local Children
Forty-eight Sonoma County non-profit organizations will benefit from nearly $233,000 in grants recently awarded by the Sonoma chapter of Speedway Children's Charities (SCC), the charitable arm of Sonoma Raceway.
This contribution brings the chapter's total distribution of funds to more than $7 million since 2001.
“Our partnership with Sonoma Raceway and Speedway Children’s Charities goes back more than 20 years and we’re so very appreciative of their generous support of the community,” said Michael Irvine, vice president of development and marketing for Boys & Girls Club Sonoma Valley. “Their support of our Ready to Work program this year will help us to prepare Sonoma Valley teens for success in the workforce, while simultaneously providing local businesses with a wave of young employees eager to use their new skills.”
This past year was a landmark year for the Sonoma chapter as it returned to being a key player in the lives of Sonoma County children. The chapter was forced to halt fundraising efforts due to Covid-19 in 2020 and also brought in Courtney Kiser as its new director in 2021.
“As a parent and Sonoma resident, I’ve always been overwhelmed at the amount of need right here in our community. I’m so grateful to have the opportunity to pair the incredible resources of Sonoma Raceway with the amazing work of our local youth organizations,” said Kiser.
Although many of SCC Sonoma’s annual events remained cancelled in 2021 due to COVID restrictions, the organization found new ways to bring in funding through first-time fundraisers.
Cardboard cutouts replaced fans who weren’t able to attend the sold-out Toyota/Save Mart 350 weekend, with all proceeds from sales benefitting the charity. In addition, race fans were able to drive the track during NASCAR festivities, and for the first time, the organization hosted a Halloween Show & Shine.
A portion of funding also came from general donations which are tax deductible and welcome year-round, and can be submitted on the organization’s website.
“We’re extremely proud of the efforts to continue to serve those in need in Sonoma County even through the uncertainty of the pandemic,” said Jill Gregory, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Sonoma Raceway. “We already have some engaging fundraising events on tap for 2022, including our popular Laps for Charity event which is on the calendar for January 22, 2022. We look forward to seeing fans on the track and raising more money for the children in Sonoma County next year!”
Funding also was supported by 14 businesses that served as Children's Champions sponsors, including Ahlborn Fence & Steel, Inc., American Asphalt, Beck Communications, Bleyco Inc., Blue Star Gas, CSW/Stuber Stroeh Engineering Group, ESP & Alarm Inc., LifeWest, Inc., Kaiser Permanente, Ramekins, Pacific Highway Rentals, Pacific Satellite Inc., United Site Services and Verizon.
The Sonoma Chapter of Speedway Children's Charities is part of a national non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds for qualified children's organizations. Founded in 1984 by Bruton Smith, chairman of Speedway Motorsports, SCC originated at Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina and the Sonoma chapter is one of eight chapters at Speedway Motorsports facilities throughout the country. Since its inception, SCC Chapters have cumulatively distributed more than $60 million nationally to youth-serving organizations.
The following Sonoma County youth groups will receive funding from Speedway Children's Charities in 2021: Boys & Girls Club of Greater Santa Rosa, Boys & Girls Club of Sonoma Valley, Boys & Girls Club of Sonoma-Marin, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Santa Rosa, Ceres Community Project, Circuit Rider Community Services, Committee on the Shelterless (COTS), Community Action Partnership of Sonoma County, Conservation Corps North Bay, Inc., Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Sonoma County, Inc., Food for Thought, Forget Me Not Children’s Services, Girls on the Run Sonoma County, Hanna Boys Center, Hope Counseling Services, Social Advocates for Youth (SAY), Jewish Community Free Clinic, Kid Scoop News, LandPaths, LifeWorks of Sonoma County, LIME Foundation, Luther Burbank Memorial Foundation, Matrix Parent Network & Resource Center, North Bay Children’s Center, Paws as Loving Support, Pediatric Dental Initiative & Surgery Center of the North Coast, Inc., Petaluma Health Center, Petaluma People Services Center, Petaluma Policing Foundation, Power to Soar Organization, Presbyterian Church of the Roses, Redwood Empire Food Bank, Redwood Empire Foster Parent Association, River to Coast Children’s Services, Roseland Charter School, Santa Rosa Symphony Association, Side by Side, Sonoma Community Center, Sonoma Ecology Center, Sonoma Valley Education Foundation, Support Our Students (S.O.S.), The Salvation Army, Valley of the Moon Children’s Foundation, Verity – Compassion. Safety. Support., ViVo Youth Orchestras, VOICES Sonoma, West County Community Services, Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) of Sonoma County.
To learn more about Speedway Children’s Charities Sonoma, visit www.speedwaycharities.org or contact Courtney Kiser at [email protected].