Published March 16, 2004
Volume 12, Number 3

Assistance League Provides Help to Those in Need; From Seniors  to Teen Parents

One of the things that contributes to the quality of life in the Tri-Valley is the great number of organizations that work to benefit the community at large. A group that plays a key role in this task is the Assistance League of Amador Valley.

The Assistance League was founded in Southern California in 1919 as an outgrowth of the Red Cross Shops of World War I. Mrs. Hancock Banning, the founder, sought “to act as a friend at any and all times to men, women, and children in need of care, guidance, and assistance, spiritually, materially, and physically,” a philosophy that still guides the organization today.

The Assistance League of Amador Valley, one of 72 chapters in 17 states, was founded in 1990 to carry out the group’s mission locally. Now with over 70 members, they provide a number of services to local seniors, women, children, and single parents. These include:

CARE (Caring About the Retired and Elderly): This program provides one-to-one contact as well as group activities at the Pleasanton Convalescent Home. Volunteers also help maintain a magazine library at Pleasanton Senior Center.

SEE (Screening Eyes Early): Vision problems among children can affect learning and self-esteem. SEE provides screening of children at local pre-schools to help detect amblyopia or “lazy eye.”

Operation School Bells: The ALAV provides a backpack filled with school supplies and a full set of clothes, including shoes, to children in need in kindergarten through third grade.

TNC (Tutoring, Newsletter, and Childcare): This program provides a number of services, including mentors, tutors, and child care, to help encourage teenage parents to stay in school. The ALAV also produces a newsletter to the community to promote awareness and support for young parents.

Books of My Own: The ALAV provides books to local Head Start pre-school and Title I elementary school children.

ASK (Assault Survivor Kits): The clothes of women who are victims of sexual assault are usually held as evidence. The ALAV provides clothes and personal grooming items to them through the ASK program.

ALAV’s annual Mad Hatter’s Tea Party is coming on Saturday, May 8. The afternoon event, to be held at the Aahmes Event Center in Livermore, will feature guest speaker Spencer Christian on “My American Journey.” Christian, the Emmy Award-winning ABC 7 News weather forecaster, is also an author of children’s books and education advocate. Tickets cost $40 and the reservation deadline for the event is April 15. Call (925) 846-3922 for details.

For additional information or to become a member of the Assistance League of Amador Valley, contact Carol Sum, membership committee chair, at (925) 462-5885.


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