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San Francisco Chronicle
Giving Fund: Cases 71-80
<p>Staff reports</p>
December 19, 2012

Following a tradition now in its fourth decade, The Advocate and Greenwich Time, in conjunction with Family Centers and Person-to-Person, have launched the Giving Fund, which gives members of the community a chance to help neighbors in need.

Requests are collected through the agency's programs and published with details for residents who want to donate.

All of the money raised goes directly to the clients. The newspapers have been involved in holiday campaigns since 1983, and saw donations dip last year to less than $63,000.

The newspapers will publish the cases in print Thursdays and Sundays until the beginning of January and maintain a full list online. Donations can be made at www.stamfordadvocate.com/givingfund/ or www.greenwichtime.com/givingfund/

No. 71: Lauren is a senior citizen who suffers from Type II Diabetes, hypertension, and has gone into anaphylactic shock in the past. She also suffers from blackouts. Lauren lives alone in subsidized housing and is afraid that she is going to blackout and fall and won't be able to contact anyone for help. She has looked into Life Alert, but all the different companies' costs are out of her price range since she is on a fixed income. A gift of $500 would allow Lauren to install and pay for a Life Alert system for the next year.

No. 72: Danny has been struggling to maintain his living expenses. Last year, he became ill with an AIDS-defining sickness and fell behind on rent, electricity and telephone. While he put together a budget and managed to pare down his debt, Danny is struggling due to his limited income. A gift of $400 would help him catch up on bills and enjoy the holiday season.

No. 73: Claudia, Roberto, and their 3-year-old daughter lived in a basement studio in Norwalk. During hurricane Sandy, they had to evacuate their home. When they returned two days later they found it was completed flooded and all their belongings were lost. A $500 gift would help this family replace the clothes, furniture and appliances they lost during the storm.

No. 74: Sam is a recovering addict, and has managed to stay clean for two years. Despite living with HIV, Sam is dedicated to maintaining his health. He has decided that he would like to go back to school and become a drug counselor. Given his limited income, Sam is unable to pay his first semester's tuition. A gift of $500 would help Sam get back to school so he can pursue his dream

No. 75: Sheryl is a single mother caring for an 11-year-old daughter. Due to the economy, Sheryl lost her job and works for minimum wage. Her daughter has a passion for ice skating, but Sheryl can't afford to purchase new skates and an outfit. A gift of $250 would allow this hard-working mother to purchase the equipment her daughter needs to follow her passion.

No. 76: Just a few months ago, Mary gave birth to her first child. While she planned to go back to work once her maternity leave was over, Mary just found out her job was eliminated due to a downsizing. With no income, Mary is forced to be a stay-home mother, since she can no longer afford daycare. The loss of income has also had a financial strain on Mary. She's fallen behind on bills, and is in fear her utilities will be cut off. A gift of $500 will help this new mother get back on her feet.

No. 77: Sophie a senior citizen, has struggled with personal and financial problems all her life. Currently, she works as a weekend caretaker to supplement her modest benefits. Unfortunately, her car recently broke down and she cannot get to the job she desperately needs. If the repairs are not made quickly, Sophie will lose a major source of income. A gift of $500 would help repair her car and keep her job.

No. 78: Andy recently received a kidney transplant, and is unable to work due to ongoing medical challenges. He has two young children, whom he supports through his disability benefits. Because of regular doctors appointments in New Haven, Andy just lost his only source of income delivering pizzas part time. He just found a job ringing bells part-time for the Salvation Army, but will lose that job once the holidays are over. A gift of $500 will give Andy a small bit of financial security as he recovers from his kidney transplant.

No. 79: Will is a struggling middle-aged man who has been living in an apartment he has not been able to furnish. Will has been trying to save money to buy the basic necessities, but has not been able to save enough. Will doesn't own an oven/stove, refrigerator or microwave, and he has sleeping on an old mattress on the floor. A gift of $400 would help Will buy some of the items.

No. 80: Michael is living with HIV/AIDS and was just released from prison a month ago. He is looking to replace clothing that was thrown away while he was in prison. Michael is hoping he could get a coat, boots and sneakers for the winter season. A gift of $150 will help him purchase these items.



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