Published February 27, 2018
Volume 2, Number 2

The Taylor Family Foundation Has Improved

Lives for Nearly 30 Years

By Hacienda Pulse Staff Writer
The Taylor Family Foundation (TTFF) of Livermore has an important mission: to preserve the wellness and enhance the quality of life for children in Northern California living with life-threatening and chronic illnesses, developmental disabilities, and youth at risk through unique therapeutic experiences and support.

In 1990 Barry and Elaine Taylor held a simple fundraiser in the backyard of their home to support clinical and other programs for Bay Area children with HIV/AIDs. In its first 10 years, the foundation partnered with the East Bay Regional Park District to build Camp Arroyo, which is used by school children during the school year and TTFF campers during weekends and the summer.

Early on TTFF chose to open up Camp Arroyo to a  broader group of children so they could also benefit from the specialized support and therapeutic recreation offered at the camp, which is nestled on 138 beautiful acres in Livermore. Over its nearly 30 years, TTFF has served more than 45,000 children at no charge, providing life-enhancing support to nearly 80,000 families in Northern California.

“Our services start with the campers,” says Angie Carmignani, Executive Director. That said, TTFF would like to be seen as a resource in the Tri-Valley community. “Even if we can’t help you, we may know someone who can and we want to connect you with them.  We work to connect the dots and give information to families in need,” she says.

Recently TTFF made a difference for the special needs class at Pleasanton’s Amador High School by helping fund a class trip to Disneyland. While intended to be fun for the class, it also served as a growth experience. The Disney trip allowed the special needs students to experience several challenging situations, notes Carmignani, including being away from their primary caregiver, coping with new and loud environments, paying for things on their own, and going outside of their normal routines. All of these experiences help build life skills and prepare the students for adult life.

Granada High School Adult Transition students were able to get matching sweatshirts thanks to TTFF, which funded the purchase. “This may seem like a small thing, but for these students it allowed them to be identified as part of something,” says Carmignani.  “Most of the students have never been part of a club or sport and this sweatshirt allowed them to be identified on school field trips and have a sense of belonging.”

TTFF’s wellness programs include music therapy, equine therapy, and an urgent need funding program. “We’d like people to know we are here to help when insurance doesn’t quite cover it,” says Carmignani. A Camp Arroyo camper may get placed permanently into a wheelchair, for example, that insurance does not fully cover. Or wheelchair access into the camper’s home is needed. When possible, TTFF steps in to help.

Hacienda businesses have been very supportive of TTFF. Still, additional volunteers are always needed since TTFF has a staff of only five full-time employees. Donations are also welcome. TTFF’s annual Day in the Park fundraiser is scheduled for August 26, 2018 at Camp Arroyo in Livermore.

For more information about The Taylor Family Foundation, please visit https://ttff.org or follow it on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TTFF.ORG.