Since 2013, SHARP has donated more than $80,000 to charitable groups that serve people primarily in San Francisco.  If you know of a 501(c)(3) organization doing excellent work serving primarily people in San Francisco—particularly if the organization does its work in or close to our neighborhood (see map of SHARP’s area)—we want to know about it. We are not soliciting grant proposals and cannot promise to contribute to the organization. We do want to learn about other groups that we might consider for grants. You can reach us through our contact page. Be sure to include the group’s website address.

Groups to Which SHARP Has Donated Since 2013

To see a description of the recipient organization and the specific purpose, if any, of the SHARP grant, scroll down to the indicated year(s). Numbers in parentheses indicate the half of the year in which the donation was made. This list does not include donations of $300 or less, which SHARP has made occasionally.

California Academy of Sciences:  2015 (2)

Center for Young Women’s Development:  2014 (2)

City Youth Now:  2017 (1) and (2), 2016 (1), 2014 (1)

Family House: 2017 (2)

Garden for the Environment:  2017 (2), 2016 (1), 2014 (2)

Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association for

(a) upgrading of Golden Gate Heights Park: 2017 (2), 2016 (2), 2016 (1), 2014 (1); and

(b) maintenance and security at the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps: 2017 (2), 2016 (2)

Golden Gate Philharmonic (youth orchestra): 2017 (2), 2016 (2),  2015 (1)

Good Samaritan Family Resource Center: 2017 (1) and (2)

Hidden Garden Steps: 2013

Homeless Youth Alliance: 2014 (1)

Independence High School: 2016 (2)

Inner Sunset / Golden Gate Heights NERT (previously “Neighborhood Emergency Response Team): 2017 (2), 2015 (2)

Lava Mae:  2017 (2), 2014 (2)

Nature in the City:  2017 (2), 2015 (2)

Newberry Film Festival:  2013

Oakes Children’s Center: 2016 (1), 2015 (1)

Pangea Legal Services: 2017 (1) and (2)

Redwood Credit Union’s North Bay fire relief fund: 2017 (2)

San Francisco AIDS Legal Referral Panel: 2015 (2)

San Francisco/Marin Food Bank:  2017 (2), 2016 (2), 2015 (2), 2013

San Francisco Parks Alliance for repair of Koret Playground, which was vandalized: 2017 (2)

Self-Help for the Elderly: 2016 (2)

St. Anthony’s Foundation: 2017 (2), 2016 (2); 2014 (1); 2013

Sunset Youth Services: 2017 (2), 2016 (1); 2015 (2)

Sutro Stewards: 2017 (2),  2016 (2), 2015 (1)

Western Neighborhoods Project (for digitizing images in its OpenSFHistory program): 2017 (1) and (2)

Zen Hospice Project: 2014 (2)


For the second half of 2017, SHARP donated a total of $52,800 to a total of 17 groups, most of which SHARP had supported before. The amount nearly doubled the $29,000 SHARP had contributed to charitable organizations since 2013. The new money went to 17 organizations, most of which SHARP had supported before.

The recipients, with new ones italicized, are: (1) City Youth Now; (2) Family House, which provides temporary housing to families of seriously ill children who are receiving treatment at the U.C.S.F.  Benioff Children’s Hospital in Mission Bay; (3) Garden for the Environment; (4) Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association for (a) the improvement of Golden Gate Heights Park and (b) maintenance and security at the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps; (5) Golden Gate Philharmonic Youth Orchestra; (6) Good Samaritan Family Services; (7) Inner Sunset/Golden Gate Heights NERT for earthquake preparedness supplies; (8) Lava Mae; (9) Nature in the City; (10) Pangea Legal Services; (11) Redwood Credit Union’s North Bay fire relief fund; (12) San Francisco/Marin Food Bank; (13) San Francisco Parks Alliance for repair of Koret Playground, which was vandalized in June 2017; (14) Sunset Youth Services; (15) St. Anthony’s Foundation; (16) Sutro Stewards; and (17) Western Neighborhoods Association.

Normally, we limit ourselves to groups serving people primarily in San Francisco. We made an exception for the North Bay fire relief fund because the needs were so great and so close to home. Our donation will be split equally between Napa and Sonoma counties.

For the first half of 2017, SHARP awarded $1,000 grants to four organizations: City Youth Now, Good Samaritan Family Resource Center, Pangea Legal Services, and the Western Neighborhoods Project. The grant to City Youth Now is our third to that group, which provides a variety of services for the city’s at-risk youth. We previously gave to CYN in the first half of 2014 and the first half of 2016. The other three grants for the first half of 2017 are our first ones to those organizations. The grants to Good Samaritan and to Pangea are intended to help our city’s immigrants.  Good Samaritan provides a variety of services for low-income Latino immigrant families. Pangea provides low-cost or free legal services to income-eligible immigrants, primarily those who are facing deportation and have a lawful avenue to legal status here.  Our grant to the Western Neighborhoods Project will help finance the digitizing of thousands of historical photographs for WNP’s OpenSFHistory archive.


In 2016, SHARP awarded $10,000 in grants, $4,000 in the first half and $6,000 in the second half.

Second Half, 2016

The second-half grants were $1,000 each to the Golden Gate Philharmonic youth orchestra, Independence High School, the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps, and Sutro Stewards.  In honor of Alice Xavier, our 2016 Local Hero, we gave $500 donations to two local charities she selected: Self-Help for the Elderly and Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association’s fund for the improvement of Golden Gate Heights Park.  We also continued our tradition of making end-of-the-year contributions to the SF/Marin Food Bank and the St. Anthony’s Foundation.  We gave $500 to each.

The grant to the Golden Gate Philharmonic is SHARP’s second to that organization.  The first came in the first half of 2015.  (Scroll down.) As with the first grant, this one will be used to fund partial scholarships for orchestra members in financial need.  About 25% of the children receive partial scholarships.

The grant to Independence High School will help to fund new landscaping on the 7th Avenue side of the building.  With the technical support of Climate Action Now!, two teachers at the school are leading the project, which will plant new trees and a collection of native plants and will install a watering system to support the new garden.  Students from Stepping Stones Preschool, the school across the street, will help with the planting and watering.

The grant to the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps will help pay for maintenance (such as re-caulking and everyday supplies) and for security cameras at the steps.

The grant to Sutro Stewards is the second from SHARP. Like the first, in the first half of 2015 (scroll down), this one will be used to fund guided educational hikes on Mt. Sutro.  These tours will be family-friendly, leisurely two-hour hikes, designed to allow children as young as 7 to discover the wonders of the mountain with their families.  Participants will learn about, among other things, the needs of growing plants, identification of trees and plants by leaf shape, seed shapes and dispersal methods, the importance of pollinators, and local wildlife.

First Half, 2016

For the first half of 2016, SHARP gave a total of $4,000 in grants.  The grants went to five groups, each of which we had financially supported before. We gave $1,000 each to the Garden for the Environment (previous gift: $1,000—second half, 2014), Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association for the fund to improve Golden Gate Heights Park (previous gift: $1,000—first half, 2014), and City Youth Now (previous gift: $1,500—first half, 2014); and $500 each to Sunset Youth Services (previous gift: $500 — second half, 2015), and the Oakes Children Center ($1,000—first half, 2015). For brief descriptions of the organizations, scroll down to the previous time period indicated in parentheses.


In 2015, SHARP awarded a total of $7,000 to charitable groups, $3,000 in the first half of the year, $4,000 in the second half.

Second Half, 2015

The second-half recipients were $1,000 to the Inner Sunset and Golden Gate Heights Disaster Area Response Team (DART), which subsequently renamed itself Neighborhood Emergency Support Team (NEST); $1,000 to Nature in the City for the Green Hairstreak Corridor project; $500 each to Sunset Youth Services and the California Academy of Sciences; and, in honor of Sheila D’Ambrosio, our former president who died in the spring of 2015, $500 each to two organizations she supported: the San Francisco AIDS Legal Referral Panel and the SF-Marin Food Bank.

NEST is a new group in our neighborhood, affiliated with but independent of the Neighborhood Emergency Response Team (NERT) for the Inner Sunset and Golden Gate Heights neighborhoods. NEST used the grant from SHARP to purchase a storage container that that holds supplies such as tables, chairs, canopy tents, tools, gloves, and some first aid items.   IS/GGH NERT will use those supplies in a major earthquake to establish its staging area at the Big Rec field in Golden Gate Park.  With the staging area in place, IS/GGH NERT can fulfill its function of assisting first responders by collecting and disseminating information as well as by assisting residents directly. The storage locker will not contain supplies for individual residents; we must do that for ourselves. For clear, easy-to-follow instructions on how to prepare for an earthquake, check the city’s website for emergency preparedness: SF72.

The Green Hairstreak Corridor project supports the small, green hairstreak butterfly by creating and maintaining habitat to connect the species’ three distinct but heretofore isolated hilltop locations in or near the Inner Sunset: Hawk Hill, Rocky Outcrop, and in the Presidio bluffs.  Because the green hairstreak can fly only a few hundred feet from its original habitat, butterflies from one location would ordinarily be unable to breed with those from another, and the species would eventually disappear.  With the creation of hairstreak-friendly habitat in a corridor that connects the three locations, the green hairstreak has thrived. The Green Hairstreak Corridor project will use SHARP’s grant to update its brochures, which have not been revised since 2007.

The green hairstreak in action
The green hairstreak in action


Sunset Youth Services has been helping in-risk youth and their families from its home in the outer Sunset since 1993. Among other activities, the group gives young people the chance to use arts and creativity to learn and grow. SYS is particularly noted for its digital arts program, which trains young people in digital audio and film production so that they can express themselves, learn marketable skills, tell their stories, and build confidence in themselves and their work.  SYS has its own recording studio and youth-run record label, Upstar Records. SHARP’s grant is unrestricted, but SYS has indicated an interest in using the money to help purchase equipment that would allow young people at SYS to produce T-shirts, another way in which SYS will enable young people to use the arts for self-improvement.

In partnership with two organizations, Project Search and The Arc San Francisco, the California Academy of Sciences offers one-year career-training internships to people with disabilities. The Academy will use SHARP’s grant to help fund the purchase of equipment such as iPads for the internship program.  This 11-minute video from the Arc profiles three Arc interns, one of whom, the irresistible Jackson, worked at the Academy.

First Half, 2015

For the first half of 2015, SHARP chose three recipients for grants of $1,000 each: the Golden Gate Philharmonic youth orchestra, and the Oakes Children Center, and Sutro Stewards.

The Golden Gate Philharmonic is an award-winning, 20-year-old music training program in San Francisco with an enrollment of more than 100 kids. The immensely talented Jonathan Chu, who performed at SHARP in March 2015, is a graduate of GGP. About 25% of the students in GGP receive partial scholarships because of financial need. SHARP’s grant will be used to fund such scholarships. At our March 2015 regular meeting, we had a mini-concert from “The Musical Chairs,” an ensemble of third- and fourth-graders who are beginning violinists with GGP.  (Scroll down for brief account and pics.)

The Oakes Children’s Center serves children who do not attend regular schools because they suffer from severe emotional disturbances and/or developmental delays.  SHARP’s $1K grant will help fund a need not funded by the city: transportation, child care, and food so that parents can attend parent-teacher conferences. Such in-person conferences allow parents to understand how their children are doing at school and to give consent for such things as field trips.

Sutro Stewards are the people who care for Mt. Sutro, the 61-acre open space preserve above the UCSF Parnassus Heights campus.  Sutro Stewards restore and maintain multi-use trails, trains volunteers in habitat management, and operates a nursery that provides plants for the area.  The organization also advocates for the forest’s health, which UCSF has pledged to maintain but has done less than well in actually maintaining. Executive Director Craig Dawson spoke to SHARP in June 2014.  SHARP’s $1K grant will help fund tours of Mt. Sutro. Here is an enthusiastic description of the tour.


In 2014, SHARP gave a total of $8,000 in donations to local organizations, $4,000 in each half.

Second Half, 2014

Our second-half-of-the-year mini-grants (totaling $4,000) went to four organizations: $1,000 each to Lava Mae, the Zen Hospice’s training program for volunteer caregivers, the Center for Young Women’s Development, and the Garden for the Environment.

Lava Mae is an innovative organization that has retrofitted an old Muni bus with two showers. The “shower bus” parks at different sites around the city to provide showers for homeless people. SHARP’s donation will go toward the retrofit of a second bus for the same purpose. With two buses operating five days a week, Lava Mae plans to provide 25,000 showers a year.  The group hopes eventually to expand to five buses.

Lava Mae's first bus; note the cute eyelashes
Lava Mae’s first bus. Click on the photo to see the eyelashes around the headlights.

The Zen Hospice Project operates a guest house in Hayes Valley for dying patients. ZHP includes a corps of more than 150 volunteers who help with palliative care both at the guest house and in the 60-bed Hospice and Palliative Care Ward at Laguna Honda Hospital. The volunteers undergo an intensive 52-hour training program and serve for five years on average. SHARP’s grant will help fund the volunteer training program, which receives no public funding.  More information about the volunteer caregiver program is here.

The Center for Young Women’s Development assists young women who are incarcerated or living on the street. The Center has two main programs. The Girls Detention Advocacy Project (GADP) helps young women who are being released from incarceration to prepare to live independently. The Sisters Rising Program provides out-of-custody support for young women who have been incarcerated.  A new project of Sisters Rising is the Participatory Action Research Project, which will train and employ ten young women to collect information from 200 of their peers, analyze the data, and use it to influence policy in the city and state. SHARP’s grant is unrestricted.

The Garden for the Environment, located on 7th Avenue and Lawton Street, is a nationally acclaimed one-acre urban demonstration garden for small-scale urban ecological food production, organic gardening, and low-water-use landscaping. GFE offers environmental education programs about organic gardening, urban compost systems, and sustainable food systems.  The education programs include one for school children that GFE conducts in partnership with the San Francisco Unified School District and the city’s Department of the Environment.  SHARP’s grant to GFE is unrestricted.

First Half, 2014

SHARP’s grants for the first half of 2014 were: $1,000 to the Homeless Youth Alliance, $1,000 to Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association, and $1,500 to City Youth Now, and $500 to the St. Anthony’s Foundation (see 2013 grants, below).

The Homeless Youth Alliance (HYA) serves youth and young adults between 13 and 29 who live on the streets in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood.  HYA received our grant by submitting the winning proposal in the Reality Grantmaking competition run by the Foundation Center in April 2014.  SHARP put up the $1,000 prize money for the competition.  HYA lost its drop-in center because the building owner terminated HYA’s lease.  In its winning proposal, HYA explained that it would use the $1,000 to facilitate case-management appointments in local cafes and coffeehouses by providing meals for clients and snacks for outreach counselors.

SHARP vice-president, Frank Noto, presents a check for $1,000 from SHARP to Suzanne Rivecca, Development Director, of Homeless Youth Alliance, winners of Reality Grantmaking on April 22, 2014, at The Foundation Center in San Francisco.
SHARP’s Frank Noto, presents a check for $1,000 from SHARP to Suzanne Rivecca, Development Director, of Homeless Youth Alliance, winners of Reality Grantmaking on April 22, 2014, at The Foundation Center in San Francisco.
Reality Grantmaking, April 2014
Reality Grantmaking, April 2014






The $1,000 grant to the Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association will be used to help renovate Golden Gate Heights Park.   A beautifully designed park in a picturesque location, the park has fallen into disrepair. Neighbors of the park have come together to win support for its renovation from the city as well as from other neighbors.


Golden Gate Heights Park, circular drive at the top
Golden Gate Heights Park, circular drive at the top

City Youth Now has been helping youth in the city’s foster care and juvenile justice system since 1950.  The organization runs a variety of programs, including some at Juvenile Hall, which is just outside our neighborhood.  We were impressed with the breadth and professionalism of the organization and its then managing director, Ananda Joy Hart.  We asked her to use our $1,500 donation for the CYN program or programs with the greatest need.  Hart spoke to SHARP in August 2014.


In 2013, SHARP made a total of $3,000 in financial charitable contributions: $1,000 to the Hidden Garden Steps; $1,000 to defray travel expenses for the organizer of the 90-second Newberry Film Festival in San Francisco on February 8, 2014; $500 to the San Francisco Food Bank; and $500 to St. Anthony’s Foundation in San Francisco.

Subscribe for SHARP News & Event updates

* required