Tri-Cities Voice Newspaper - What's Happening - Fremont, Union City, Newark California

January 4, 2005 > Fundraising to SAVE lives

Fundraising to SAVE lives

by By Susana Nuñez

Holidays are a time to share with loved ones and show them how much you care about their well-being, yet Shelter Against Violent Environments (SAVE) demonstrates this care throughout the year.

SAVE is an organization whose goal is to give the entire community their support in times of need, and achieving this goal requires the help of the community. This season, SAVE has commenced a new fundraiser. The Purple Bear fundraiser will help them fulfill their goal of providing shelter for those suffering from domestic violence as well as raise awareness of the problem.

The idea of selling purple bears came from Vice President of Heritage Bank of Commerce Nesly Moquette. With her strong support and promotion, Moquette helped motivate many to get involved, including her fellow board members. She was able to gather enough donations to purchase the bears at no cost to SAVE, making the revenue received from bear sales entirely profit for the organization. The law firms of Lee Hewitt, Robert Dimino, Harold Westendorf, and Leon Mezzetti gave generous donations to the project, as well as Lou Faught from Mission Mortgage and Jack Benoun. Combined, the group of sponsors raised $2,000, with Heritage Bank financially backing the project with another $2,000 for the first run of bears.

The group purchased a total of 500 bears in their first run, but is planning to buy more if necessary. The much anticipated Purple Bears have already arrived and the selling process has begun. The bears, whose color is the symbolic color of domestic violence, are 15 inches tall and cost $16 each. They are currently available at the Heritage Bank of Commerce in Fremont and the SAVE offices, but will also soon be sold at Washington Hospital. Even California State Senator Liz Figueroa has purchased a bear in support of this caring organization's fight against domestic violence.

Since 1976, SAVE has been serving victims of abuse in southern Alameda County. The organization provides victims with information on what they can do to protect themselves and their loved ones from the abuser(s). They explain the cycle of violence most abusers follow and the different stages. The most important message of the organization to the victims is the fact that it is not their fault and that they are not to blame for the violence and without help the situation will only grow worse. SAVE steps in to help those who find themselves in these dangerous situations that can be brought to an end.

Heritage Bank of Commerce
3077 Stevenson Blvd, Fremont, CA 94538
(510) 445-0400

Shelter Against Violent Environments
P.O. Box 8283, Fremont, CA 94537
24-hour Hotline (510) 794-6055
Community Office
39155 Liberty Street, Suite C310
(510) 574-2250 Fax: (510) 574-2252

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