At age 15, Erik Self sneaked into the home of a friend’s mother and, when she got out of bed to investigate the noise, stabbed her repeatedly with a survival knife. He was arrested and charged with attempted murder and burglary.
It’s been more than 10 years since Char Donnermeyer sat in a communitywide forum to determine which charitable cause needed her attention. The United Way had tapped Donnermeyer and two others to start a group that women around the region could rally behind.
Chloe Walker doesn’t remember the first time she moved or how many times she had to pack her belongings in flimsy trash bags. But she remembers getting her first suitcase at age 18, when she became too old for the foster system.
Between her 8th and 15th birthdays, Ashlee Rogers moved out of nearly a half-dozen foster homes. She was removed from her mother twice, and she floated all over El Dorado County, from Placerville to Pollock Pines and back.
For most of his life, Sean Patrick Shadduck had heard — and believed — that hard work yields rewards. When he proved that to himself earlier this year, it was a boost to his self-confidence.
The economy has rocked a number of local nonprofits, putting a dent in donations just as they were taking on the burden of increased social needs. Many of these charities have turned to foundations for increased support.
Scott Steele rushed his daughter to the hospital one night because her ear infection wouldn’t heal.
Somebody stole Derek Finstad’s backpack.
He left it in the locker room at a gym in Yuba City, where he works. But when he went to retrieve it, the backpack — with his keys, checkbook and other materials — was gone. Finstad wasn’t happy.
A Sacramento software startup has launched an iPhone application for runners that picks music to go with a workout and can add customized coaching instructions along with the beat. When users pay to download the coaching data, a donation goes to a nonprofit of the coach’s choice.
After 19 years of struggling to belong, Juanita Nicolas found the students at Wilson Riles Middle School. As a youth aid, the teenager tutored 40 students, many in the foster care system just as she had been before emancipation a year earlier.
Sometimes small things can make big differences. Whether it’s a dry towel, a warm hat or advice on how to create a budget, a little bit of time can have a positive impact on one of Sacramento County’s 4,000 foster youth, many of whom don’t have anyone to provide these basics.
The face of homelessness in our region is changing. Yes, we still see the typical street people: the disabled man asking for quarters outside our favorite coffee shop, the elderly lady pushing a grocery cart and the sleeping figures huddled under blankets in doorways. These are the chronically homeless — the most vulnerable, change-resistant and expensive in terms of taxpayer dollars spent on shelters, medical care, addiction rehab and law enforcement.
Financial donations to the 83-year-old Stockton Symphony are down sharply, yet shows are selling out.
When a mangy white cat wandered out of the oak woodland and into the lap of Lynne Powlesland, the Folsom resident knew immediately that she had made a new friend.
Amid the country’s worst economy in decades, Michael Genovese was offered more work, and he refused.