The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative announced Monday it is committing $500,000 to support children’s summer programs in San Mateo County, and an additional $650,000 to support local libraries, school districts, education foundations, and partners in south San Mateo County, including Redwood City, East Palo Alto, and North Fair Oaks.
The summer programs being sponsored host programs offering “a combination of relationship building, physical activity, and academic support, and that are integral to their communities.”
“Summer programs, specifically those focused on communities most impacted by the pandemic, including communities of color, can provide supportive environments that foster reconnection, academic recovery, wellness, and healing,” CZI said in a statement announcing the donation.
Mary Hoshiko-Haughey, COO at YMCA of Silicon Valley, said the effects of COVID-19 will compound issues for vulnerable families needing summer school to prevent learning loss, hunger, health and to provide safe spaces.
“We need to be ready to provide support for more youth and a more intense set of challenges,” Hoshiko-Haughey said.
Patrick Heisinger, assistant city manager of East Palo Alto, said the CZI contribution will ensure youth in the city have the opportunity to participate.
“These experiences will allow for a return to some level of normalcy, as we recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Heisinger said.
Since April 2020, CZI has committed more than $110 million to COVID-19 recovery efforts worldwide and locally, in the areas of education, a testing lab and resources for the recently incarcerated. Over $12 million has been provided in the Bay Area toward education, health services, financial assistance and small business relief.