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Project Independence helps people with developmental
disabilities find jobs, develop friendships, and live independently.

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13th ANNUAL PROJECT INDEPENDENCE WALK FOR INDEPENDENCE RETURNS TO TEWINKLE PARK ON SATURDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2022

Daily Pilot newspaper is media sponsor   Costa Mesa, California, September 16, 2022 – Nonprofit Project Independence invites champions for the rights of people with developmental disabilities to run, walk or roll at its 13th Annual Walk for Independence, set for Saturday, October 1, 2022 in-person at TeWinkle Park in Costa Mesa to help launch National Disability Employment Awareness Month. The Costa Mesa-based Daily Pilot newspaper will again be the media sponsor. Funds raised from the walk will help fund the organization’s Independent Living, Supported Employment, and Day Program services that support more than 600 adults. More than 400 people are anticipated to participate the event that annually raises more than $50,000. “We invite everyone to celebrate independent living for people with developmental disabilities as we return to a much-anticipated, in-person celebration,” said Project Independence CEO Robert Watson. To register to participate in the event, visit http://www.proindependence.org/walkathon-3/# To become a sponsor, please contact Director of Development Todd Eckert at Todd@Proindependence.org or 714-549-3464. Project Independence has more than four decades of service and stability in Orange County as a lifeline to adults with developmental disabilities. Eighty-seven cents of every dollar raised by Project Independence goes directly to support vital programs for people with developmental disabilities. For additional information, please visit www.proindependence.org   ###

Project Independence’s “Empowering Possibilities” Giving Day

24-Hour Fundraiser May 20 Seeks to Raise $100K For Nonprofit Programs and Services for People Living with Disabilities in Orange County Costa Mesa, Calif. (May 6 2021) — Project Independence and nine aligned nonprofits will partner with the Orange County Community Foundation (OCCF) on May 20 for Empowering Possibilities, a collaborative Giving Day to support people with disabilities living in Orange County. The 24-hour online effort aims to raise $100,000 for 10 nonprofits offering a range of education and supportive services, skills training and counseling, and community outreach programs. Within Orange County, there are over 250,000 people living with disabilities, making up 8.5% of the community. This Giving Day is an opportunity for donors to collectively support the nonprofit organizations providing the tools and resources necessary for Orange County’s disabled residents to achieve success and independence. In addition to Project Independence, other participating organizations include Blind Children’s Learning Center of OC; Dayle McIntosh Center for the Disabled; Down Syndrome Association of OC; Family Support Network; Hope Center for the Arts; Special Olympics Southern California; Speech and Language Development Center; United Cerebral Palsy Association of OC; and Vocational Visions. “Funds raised during the Empowering Possibilities Giving Day will support individuals and families who have suffered from gaps in services, isolation, and lacked access to special education programs, especially during the pandemic,” said Shelley Hoss, president and CEO of the Orange County Community Foundation. “We are proud to power this collaborative effort to build a supportive and inclusive Orange County for all people, including our neighbors with disabilities.” For more than four decades. Project Independence has been promoting civil rights for people with developmental disabilities through a range of vital services that expand their independence and choice. Subscribe “We are so please to team again this year with our fellow nonprofits serving those who need us most.” said Debra Marsteller, CEO, Project Independence. “At Project Independence we are honored to serve adults with developmental disabilities. Our Empowering Possibilities Team represents the valuable community services to so many individuals and families throughout Orange County who need a helping hand. As a result, our entire community grows stronger. We thank you for your compassionate support during this campaign. We could not do what we do without you!” To give online during the 24-hour Giving Day, please visit empowering-possibilities-giving-day.ocnonprofitcentral.org. For more information about Orange County Community Foundation Collaborative Giving Days, please visit oc-cf.org/givingdays. ### About Project Independence Founded in 1977, Project Independence is an Orange County-based 501(c)3 nonprofit, serving nearly 1,000 people with developmental disabilities in their homes, at work, and in the community through Independent Living, Supported Employment and Day Program services, and other supportive resources. For more information, please visit www.proindependence.org About Orange County Community Foundation Founded in 1989, the Orange County Community Foundation (OCCF) works with donors, strengthens the local nonprofit sector and works to find solutions to community needs. Since its inception, OCCF has awarded nearly $780 million in grants and scholarships, placing the organization in the top two percent in grantmaking among U.S. community foundations. For more information, visit oc-cf.org or call 949-553-4202. Be a part of our conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

13th Annual Walk for Independence funder set for Oct. 1 in Costa Mesa

Nonprofit Project Independence’s walk at TeWinkle Park in Costa Mesa will help launch National Disability Employment Awareness Month. Nonprofit Project Independence invites champions for the rights of people with developmental disabilities to run, walk or roll at its 13th Annual Walk for Independence, set for Saturday, October 1, 2022 at 8 AM in-person at TeWinkle Park in Costa Mesa to help launch National Disability Employment Awareness Month. Union Bank is the lead sponsor and the Daily Pilot is the media sponsor. Funds raised from the walk will help fund the organization’s Independent Living, Supported Employment, and Day Program services that support more than 600 adults. More than 400 people are anticipated to participate the event that annually raises more than $40,000. “We invite everyone to celebrate independent living for people with developmental disabilities as we return to a much-anticipated, in-person celebration,” said Project Independence CEO Robert Watson. “The annual walk has grown to become our signature fundraising activity because it helps pay for the many services we provide to adults with developmental disabilities living in the Orange County community.” To register to participate in the event, visit http://www.proindependence.org/walkathon-3/# To become a sponsor, please contact Director of Development Todd Eckert at Todd@Proindependence.org or 714-549-3464. =========================================================================== ALSO IN THE NEWS AT:  

Project Independence Nets $11,735 with OC Community Foundation

24-Hour online fundraiser helped Project Independence provide programs and services for people living with developmental disabilities. Costa Mesa-based Project Independence (PI) – https://www.proindependence.org – and 12 aligned nonprofits partnered with the Orange County Community Foundation (OCCF) on May 11 for Empowering Possibilities, a collaborative Giving Day to support people with disabilities living in Orange County. Project Independence exceeded its original goal of $10,000 by raising $11,735 during the 24-hour online effort that aimed to raise funds for nonprofits offering a range of education and supportive services, skills training and counseling, and community outreach programs. In total, OCCF’s Empowering Possibilities Giving Day raised $150,906. Within Orange County, there are over 250,000 people living with disabilities, making up 8.5% of the community. This Giving Day was an opportunity for donors to collectively support the nonprofit organizations providing the tools and resources necessary for Orange County’s disabled residents to achieve success and independence. In addition to PI, other participating organizations included Abilities OC; Beyond Blindness; Dayle McIntosh Center for the Disabled; Down Syndrome Association of OC; Family Support Network; Hope Center for the Arts; Reimagine OC; Special Olympics Southern California; Speech and Language Development Center; TLC Public Charter School; United Cerebral Palsy Association of OC; and Vocational Visions. “We are proud to support the nonprofits providing vital assistance and opportunities to people with disabilities,” said Carol Ferguson, director of donor and community engagement at the Orange County Community Foundation. “We will continue to advocate for a safe and inclusive Orange County that allows our neighbors with disabilities to experience independence and fulfill their full potential.” “We thank our generous donors who stepped up in this year’s fundraiser, helping us not only reach our original goal, but also releasing a $1,000 challenge grant,” said Project Independence CEO Robert Watson. “For over 45 years we have had the honor of serving those who need us most. By building independence through supported living, supported employment and day programs, we have helped our population enjoy lives of confidence, purpose and friendship, and our community to grow stronger through the act of inclusion.” For more information about Orange County Community Foundation Collaborative Giving Days, please visit oc-cf.org/givingdays. Eighty-seven cents of every dollar raised by PI goes directly to support programs for people with developmental disabilities.

Direct & Beyond, Inc. Sponsors Project Independence

Direct & Beyond, Inc, a global provider of Logistics and Shipping services, sponsors Employee of the Month at Project Independence Dan Pittman, Neighbor Posted Tue, Feb 22, 2022 at 11:53 am PT|       Direct & Beyond, Inc. of Gardena, California is the sponsor of the new Employee of the Month program for Costa Mesa-based Project Independence (PI), which has more than four decades of service and stability in Orange County as a lifeline to adults with developmental disabilities. Under the direction of company President Durk Jorritsma of Newport Beach, DBI is a global provider of Logistics and Shipping services that offers a complete line of domestic and international freight forwarding services. “We are delighted to become the sponsor of outstanding employees at Project Independence,” said Jorritsma. “Like Project Independence, our organization believes in providing exemplary service to our expanding customer base.” The first employee to be honored is Sulema Herrera of Santa Ana, who works in PI’s Day Program that offers integrated work, volunteer and paid, recreation and community access for many of the nonprofit’s clients. She was nominated to receive the award by her area manager. Herrera supports Project Independence clients in the City of Irvine’s busy mail department. The city has been a job site with PI for 20 years. “We thank Durk for becoming the sponsor of Employee of the Month program that acknowledges the contributions our staff make to improve the lives of those we serve,” said PI CEO Robert Watson. Project Independence has more than four decades of service and stability in Orange County as a lifeline to adults with developmental disabilities. Eighty-seven cents of every dollar raised by Project Independence goes directly to support vital programs for people with developmental disabilities. For additional information, please visit www.proindependence.org            

Project Independence brings holiday cheer to clients

After discovering that many of their clients were going empty handed this past holiday season.  Project Independence and their staff compiled dozens of  gift bags to be delivered to our adults living with developmental disabilities.  A population already at risk of isolation, during these extraordinary times, it has become even more important to safely make contact and connection with the clients. Many Project staff stepped up to play the role of elves and deliver the treasures to clients throughout the community. “Putting a smile on someone’s face is the best gift I will receive this Christmas,” explained Sharie LaPierre, a longtime staff member of PI. “It is really what this season is about.”

SUPPORT INDEPENDENCE

We serve over 700 people with developmental disabilities in Southern California as they experience life and discover their potential for independence, as every person should have the opportunity to do – regardless of disability.

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