Climbers For Peace Plan Iranian Expedition

Apr 24, 2017

Santa Rosa-based Climbers For Peace organizes and leads multi-national teams in bond-building ascents of major mountains. Their next trip will take them up the highest peak in the Middle East—assuming the government of Iran allows it.

Non-profit Serves Homeless Pet Owners

Mar 9, 2017
Homeless With Pets

Pet owners are deeply attached to their dogs, cats, birds and other animals, and that doesn’t change if they become homeless. But their ability to care for their pets may. That’s where an unusual and specially focused non-profit steps in to help.

More than two thirds of the pets kept by homeless people locally are dogs, says Gillian Squirrell, founder of Homeless With Pets. But that other third encompasses considerable variety.

Housing Aid for New Teachers

Mar 2, 2017

Training new teachers for local schools isn’t enough. The Sonoma County office of Education is also partnering in efforts to help secure housing for them.

Learn more about the Housing Land Trust of Sonoma County here.

Some of the young people who most need mental health services have been conditioned to avoid them. A new youth-led initiative hopes to use peer outreach to overcome that.

This new collaboration, says VOICES Director Amber Twitchell, is especially timely, as the need for these services continues to mount.

VOICES—an acronym for the organization’s founding name  “Voice Our Independent Choices for Emancipation Support” –is more than 10 years old now. In that time it has welcomed and served hundreds of transition youth, and Twitchell says most of them have stayed in touch.

Abetting a Comeback for SF Bay’s Native Oysters

Feb 1, 2017

Once prolific in San Francisco Bay, but now scarce, Olympia oysters are getting some human help in building new reefs—and helping their benefactors, too.

Linda Hutner, Executive Director of The Wild Oyster Project in San Francisco, says this area is following in the footsteps of other like-minded efforts elsewhere.

Introducing Autism Kits for Restaurants

Aug 29, 2016
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  Dining out with children who get overstimulated or impatient can present challenges for any parent; even more so for parents of children on the autism spectrum. A new program, being introduced in a few Santa Rosa area restaurants, is addressing that situation.

Green Mary's Lending Library

Apr 27, 2016
Robin Latham, Green Mary

  For minimizing garbage, nothing beats reusing things. That’s why Green Mary has assembled an unconventional lending library of plates, glasses and other event essentials.

Local ‘Partners’ Aid Rural African Tribe

Mar 11, 2016

  Californians have been coping with drought for a few years now. For the Masai people of eastern Africa, water shortages have been a fact of life for generations, one of several needs that a local non-profit is helping with.

  The Masai are a long-standing tribal presence in their region, a people that, Alias Morindot explains, have managed to preserve most of their traditional way of life into the 21st century.

From that perspective, he sees pronounced contrasts with the culture of contemporary California.

The History of Women’s History Month

Mar 2, 2016


  It is Women’s History Month again, as it has been every March since 1988. But the roots of that national observation reach back even further, to 1977, when they first sprouted here in Sonoma County.

The Project also got some extra love from Congressman Mike Thompson this week, along with some local honorees. Congratulations to all.

Guerneville Health Center Carries On Despite Fire

Jan 29, 2016
Sonoma County Gazette

  Despite a devastating Christmas night fire, Guerneville’s West County Health Center is continuing to see a full schedule of patients, while slowly making plans to rebuild.

Sausalito’s Homegrown Tall Ship

Dec 30, 2015
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

A modern replica of an 18th century sailing ship—built to 80% scale—is taking shape on the edge of Richardson Bay. When it is finished, the new tall ship will mostly host educational trips for Bay Area school kids. 

In the video below, Executive Director Alan Olson explains the Educational Tall Ship project in greater detail, while showing the ship's infrastructure as it appeared this past summer.

Healdsburg Gleaners “Rescue” Food for Pantries

Nov 14, 2015
Bruce Robinson, KRCB


  Extra or unharvested produce doesn’t go to waste when Healdsburg’s Farm to Pantry gleaners go into action. 

Melita Love, who founded the Farm to Pantry Gleaners seven years ago, says they have been helped enormously by the many Healdsburg area farmers who make their unused fruit and vegetables available to the group.

  The gleaning group sends the biggest share of what they gather to their local food pantry, but Program Director Dani Wilcox says they seek out other hungry recipients as well.

Santa Rosa Named a “Fair Trade Town"

Oct 13, 2015

  Santa Rosa has become the 10th official “Fair Trade Town" in California, and will celebrate that designation on Saturday.

  You can read or download the Madr Boomie Sustainability Impact Report here.

The Official Santa Rosa Fair Trade Town Celebration will be held in Courthouse Square on Saturday afternoon. See event details below.

Lynda Wilson

  The imposition of a strict limit on how many people can attend the fund-raising Funky Friday concerts at Sugarloaf Ridge State Park has left the future of the highly successful events in jeopardy.

The central issue beneath the procedural snafu is one of capacity—how many people can attend the concerts without harming the park environment? Bill Meyers, a lead organizer of the Funky Friday events sees a huge variance between the fixed seating in the park amphitheater and the crowds that the space has been accommodating.

SAY’s Dream Center Takes Shape

Aug 6, 2015
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

The complex transformation of a former hospital into a residential and support center for homeless youth is well underway. Parent organization Social Advocates for Youth is offering occasional tours of the facility in transition. After visiting the site this week, KRCB’s Bruce Robinson filed this update.

  The first priority for SAY right now is to be able to open the doors of the Dream Center. Communications Manager Caitlin Childs says that will also allow the first group of residents to help shape some of the final details at the new facility.

Inside View Now Available at Wildlife Hospital

Aug 4, 2015
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  If you’ve ever wondered what goes on inside a wildlife hospital, it’s now possible to observe first-hand from the new viewing deck at Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue. 

Tours at Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue are usually held on Saturdays. Find further details here on their website.

Summer Youth Ecology Corps Goes Back to Work

Jun 22, 2015

  Today we look at a triple-win summer job program for youth—they’re working outdoors, helping the community, and gaining experiences beyond job skills that will serve them going forward.

  The youth participating in the Ecology Corps don't just gain land maintenance skills that can be applied in numerous situations. Karen Freis, Assistant Director of Sonoma County's Human Services Department notes that they also learn about the local environment they are working in.

Green Energy Advocacy Groups Consolidate

Jun 16, 2015

  The former Climate Protection Campaign is now the Center for Climate Protection, but that’s not all that’s changed for them. The busy non-profit has also moved into new, more visible offices in downtown Santa Rosa, and is expanding a bit as well.

The combined organizations are holding at open house at their new quarters between 4th and 5th streets next Thursday afternoon. See details here.

10,000 Degrees Heats Up Educational Opportunities

Feb 26, 2015
10,000 Degrees

  A pro-active college scholarship program in the North Bay is succeeding by starting early and getting involved in their students’ lives. Not only do most of them get their degrees, but many of the graduates return to help perpetuate the upward cycle.

Tending the Harvest for the Hungry Garden

Oct 8, 2014
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  A passion for gardening is only part of what drives the volunteers whose Harvest for the Hungry garden in Santa Rosa donates thousands of pounds of fresh organic produce to local non-profits, year-round. 

Because the produce grown there is donated, not sold, the Harvest for the Hungry garden relies heavily on its yearly spring plant sale for operating expenses. Volunteer Katy Torgerson says one of the attractions they offer is a huge array of tomato varieties.

Foster Youth Service Organization Expands Southward

Sep 30, 2014
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  VOICES is an innovative, youth-led program offering support services for kids who have aged out of foster homes. The name is an acronym for Voice Our Independent Choices for Emancipation Services.  They began seven years ago in Napa, and expanded to Santa Rosa in 2009. Now the group has moved beyond the North Bay to launch a third site.

Find out more about VOICES on their website.

The group's move into Monterey County was widely covered in local media there. Here's one example.

Santa Rosa Volunteer Fair Debuts

Sep 19, 2014

  Sonoma County already leads the state in volunteerism, but there is always room to do more. To help facilitate that, a first-ever Volunteer Fair is being held tomorrow in Santa Rosa, and we’ve got all the details about it for you on today’s Exchange.

Inside The Medical Cannabis Business

Aug 11, 2014
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  Medicinal cannabis has become big business in California over the past 17 years. Today, the North Bay Report takes you inside one local dispensary operation to see how it runs like other retailers—and how it is quite different.

  While growing marijuana for medicinal purposes is more widespread than ever, Corey Rider, who manages product intake for Peace in Medicine, says the quality and efficacy can vary widely, depnding on the knowledge and intention of each individual cultivator.

National Recognition for Local Boys & Girls Clubs

May 6, 2014

  It was a very good week for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Sonoma County at their organization’s national gathering last week, as they came home with some impressive recognition.

Phillipine Medical Mission

Apr 3, 2014

  In January, a medical mission organized by a North Bay doctor, treated thousands of patients in the Philippines, many of them in outlying rural areas recently hit by natural disasters. But this was not a one-time response to the needs there. Bruce Robinson talks with the doctor who makes it happen.

The mission was a project of the Philippine Medical Society of Northern California.

Raising Orphaned Beavers

Mar 31, 2014
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  A pair of rescued beavers at a local wildlife shelter will be returned to the wild, just as soon as they can demonstrate the ability to survive there.

Because the two young beavers have bonded to each other, their chances of a successful release are enhanced, says Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue director Doris Duncan, and their time at the shelter can be shorter and more productive.

Long Awaited Children's Museum Poised to Open in 2014

Jan 5, 2014
courtesy Children's Museum of Sonoma County.

It's time to come and play. The Children's Museum of Sonoma County has been a museum-on-the-go since 2005, but this year the museum will open the doors to a permanent home, near the Charles Schulz Museum, West of Coddingtown Mall.  

Collette Michaud, museum CEO, hopes the museum will become an integral part of the lives of many local children, especially those whose families struggle with affording preschool and daycare. 

Social Finance Lending

Dec 9, 2013

Social impact investing balances a borrower’s contribution to the local and global community, against the lender’s return on investment. And both parties talk to each other to make it work. 

Their face-to-face pricing meetings are often revelatory for the participants, says RSF Social Finance CEO Don Shaffer. But their reactions also tend to follow a consistent pattern.


Cause Marketing

Sep 4, 2013

  When non-profits and for-profit businesses team up in a joint public marketing effort, to be truly successful, it must also serve a greater good. So says the man who wrote the book on “cause marketing.”