ABC7 donors help 'Moms against Poverty' nonprofit expand services

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Thanks to viewers like you, an ambitious local charity that's making a difference in kids' lives around the region has been able to offer help at five new locations. (KGO-TV)

We have a wonderful update for you on a story we brought to you last December about a very ambitious charity helping Bay Area children. It's called the "Moms against Poverty" program, or MAP for short.

It's helped thousands of children, locally and globally. MAP told us that our story helped them receive a grant and enough corporate and private donations to expand their services to five new locations.

ABC7's Cheryl Jennings talked to many of those involved. She says a number of San Francisco families in the Sunnydale Housing Complex in San Francisco are the newest recipients of the Moms Against Poverty program. MAP provides a variety of services including hygiene programs.

MAP recently purchased a new washer/dryer combination for those who work with the Asian Pacific Association Family Support Services. We visited a class is called "learning through play." The case manager is Nancy Tenorio, who says she and her colleagues teach under-served parents how to help their children learn early childhood literacy, such as numbers, counting and talking. They teach the parents how to create the same activities at home.

"In this area, we have many stresses, stuff going on with the family and in the community, violence and all the drug issues. For the kids, they also have to worry about clean clothes and other stuff. It really affects their school performance," said APA Family Support Services Program Manager Jack Siu.

RELATED: Moms Against Poverty helps kids in the Bay Area, around the world

Delfarib Fanaie co-founded Moms Against Poverty in 2008. She says the new donations allowed MAP to buy a washer-dryer at the Support Center and enabled MAP to offer help to five new locations.

It's thanks to generous donors, including Hitachi and the Neda Nobari Foundation, who saw our ABC7 News story last December. We showcased the hygiene program at the Frick Impact Academy in Oakland.

When asked why washers and dryers, Fanaie said, "Because we learned that children, because of lack of hygiene, because the clothes weren't washed at home and no access to having the laundry facilities, they would skip school."

MAP also buys personal hygiene items in bulk for those signed up for the programs.

"Some of the children, they don't have hygiene products at home, especially teenagers," Fanaie explains. "They need that. And because of a lack of it, they get bullied. They don't come to school. They feel embarrassed. Their self-esteem goes down."

RELATED: ABC7 News Anchor Cheryl Jennings reflects on time spent in field with Bay Area nonprofit Roots of Peace

Dee Domingo is the liaison for Moms Against Poverty with schools, churches and centers. She says it's important for the centers to have the hygiene items discreetly available.

"It's like an emergency pack," she said. "They come knock on the door and ask for shampoo, conditioner, toothbrushes, toothpaste, sanitary napkins, anything else that people need."

Domingo adds, "There is a need out there. There are a lot of people in poverty. People need help and that's what we're here for."

ABC7 News showed you what MAP did for the Oakland Frick Academy families. MAP bought a deep freezer and filled it up with high quality meats. Moms Against Poverty wants to do the same thing for every school and center enrolled in the program.

RELATED: Bay Area nonprofit helping to transform health of poorest residents in Peru

"When a school comes to us and asks for nutrition outreach programs and we don't have the sufficient funding to provide them with what children need, it breaks our heart," Delfarib said.

She gets reports from the MAP programs throughout the Bay Area and across the globe, including Africa and Cambodia. The notes bring tears to her eyes.

She read one note out loud and said, "One mother was so happy to get chicken. She said she had not bought chicken in a long time because it was too expensive."

Delfarib says that kind of gratitude makes the MAP team work even harder.

"I want to really mention that we are ever so grateful for this opportunity," she said. "Cheryl, you guys have been incredibly kind to give us this opportunity to bring the voice of the children to the audiences."

Moms Against Poverty is holding a big fundraiser in San Francisco Saturday night at the Metreon. Go here to learn about the event and how to help the nonprofit.
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