Season 9 Nonprofit Partners

Aphasia Center of California (Captain Mark Kelly)

Youth Homes (David Gergen)

Oakland A's Community Fund (Billy Beane & Paul DePodesta)

California Symphony (Condoleezza Rice)

Meals on Wheels (Lara Logan)

Sentinels of Freedom (James Bradley)

Aphasia Center of Californiachabot

In 1996, the Aphasia Center of California opened its doors as the first independent nonprofit organization in the nation dedicated to providing direct services to individuals with aphasia.

You may be asking, “What is aphasia (uh fay zhuh)?” Imagine if suddenly, you were unable to talk to your family, read a newspaper, write a check, or understand what someone was saying to you.  Aphasia is a communication impairment caused by brain injury, typically resulting from a stroke, and affects about 2 million Americans.  While intelligence remains intact, the ability to speak, comprehend, read, or write may be lost or reduced.  Although there are more people with aphasia than Parkinson’s Disease, few people have heard of it. Aphasia causes a profound impact on the lives of survivors, families, and friends, and can result in total isolation.

The Aphasia Center of California’s high quality, holistic, cutting-edge treatment programs, provided by experienced speech-language pathologists, offer a “lifeline” for participating individuals, their families, and friends. We create a community of people who support and understand one another, while providing stories of hope and success.

Our randomized controlled research trial investigated the efficacy of group communication treatment. This research demonstrated that there was significant value in receiving regular group “communication workouts,” as meaningful improvement could continue for years after brain injury. Individuals in the treatment program began to venture outside of their homes and participate in community life again.

Today, the Aphasia Center of California continues to pioneer innovative communication therapies and is recognized internationally for its clinical model and research.  From consultation and training of healthcare professionals, to our community-based center, we offer expertise, deep understanding, and compassion for those whose lives have been impacted by aphasia.

Please tell a friend and help us raise awareness of aphasia! For more information, visit

Youth Homes

Youth Homes, Inc. provides a safe place for foster youth to heal and grow. Our vision is a world where former foster kids lead healthy, productive and whole lives. Serving the needs of abused and traumatized children and adolescents in the Bay Area since 1965, Youth Homes provides intensive residential treatment and aftercareprograms that promote the child’s healing, family reunification and permanency.

In 2011, Youth Homes served over 600 children and families:

  • Emergency Assessment Shelters - the only shelters in Contra Costa for abused, neglected, and traumatized children age 7-17.
  • Intensive Residential Treatment Homes - these homes provide intensive residential treatment with highly skilled staff.
  • Therapeutic Behavior Services (TBS) - dedicated to preventing hospitalization or placement in high-level residential treatment through one-on-one support and coaching.
  • Intensive Treatment Foster Care- recruits, trains and licenses foster families to work with children in need.
  • Aftercare Services - a comprehensive system of supportive services for youth 17-25 leaving our care, as well as youth of all ages returning to family.
  • Garden Project - Youth Homes residents receive job skills through hands on gardening jobs at two of our homes during the summer.
  • TAY Labor Program – job readiness for youth ages 17-24
  • Mentor Program - Volunteers provide reliable adult connections for residential and emancipated clients, helping them learn skills necessary for a fully functioning adult life.
  • Day Program- provides individualized education services for residential youth who struggle in a traditional school setting.

For more information on programs and services visit,

Oakland A's Community Fundjuvenile

The Oakland Athletics organization, in conjunction with the A’s Community Fund, strives to make a positive impact in the Bay Area and Northern California.  A’s players, coaches and front office employees, together with fans and sponsors are committed to meeting the social, cultural and educational demands in the community. The A’s host numerous fundraising events, implement several educational programs and support various organizations that reach out to people of diverse backgrounds throughout the community.

Mission Statement:

The Oakland A’s Community Fund supports charitable organizations in improving the quality of life for people throughout the Bay Area. Specifically, to fund endeavors to improve educational programs, aid the underprivileged, assist in crime and drug prevention, promote health awareness, and champion children and senior welfare. The A’s Community Fund believes in the need to invest in the community’s future.  The Fund donates approximately $650,000 annually to various community programs.

For more information visit

California Symphonyjuvenile

Since 1986, the California Symphony Orchestra has presented acclaimed, world-class musicians performing classical music to audiences in Contra Costa County and the greater East Bay. It brings audiences closer to the music by making the classical repertoire accessible to new listeners and more meaningful to aficionados through its intimate, engaging performances. California Symphony’s acclaimed, world-class musicians perform works by established masters and new pieces by promising young American composers.

In 1991, the California Symphony introduced its Young American Composer-in-Residence Program, which has given promising young composers the opportunity to develop, refine, and premiere a new work during a unique “orchestra as laboratory” three-year residency. All previous participants have gone on to achieve international success. The National Endowment for the Arts, the Aaron Copland Fund, and BMI Foundation are among the innovative program’s supporters.

In addition to its musical performances, the California Symphony has a rich tradition of extending its reach to local schools through its music education programs. In 2012, on the occasion of its 25th anniversary, CSO launched Sound Minds, a revamped, comprehensive, innovative music education program that combines the transformative experience of participating in a musical ensemble with reading tutoring to the area’s underserved school children.

The California Symphony is currently engaged in a search for a new Music Director with plans to announce that appointment at the end of its 2012-2013 Season.

For more information , please visit:

Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels and Senior Outreach Services has been serving hot meals to seniors living in Contra Costa County for over 44 years.  Over 220,000 meals were served last year.  Additionally, we promote the health and well being of seniors through a variety of no cost services.

The agency’s mission is to enhance the quality of life for older adults in Contra Costa County.  Our six programs work together to help keep our clients healthy, safe, and independent in their communities.  We are relied upon as a critical single point of contact where seniors and their adult children can turn for help. Our agency is a vital part of the community, partnering in our work with local government, other agencies, businesses, and civic groups and faith-based organizations.

Realizing the need for multiple layers of service, we developed six separate but integrated programs.

  • Meals on Wheels delivers hot meals to homebound seniors. 
  • C.C. Café serves hot lunches to seniors at six different locations.
  • Fall Prevention reduces preventable injuries, loss of independence, costs and deaths associated with falls among seniors. 
  • Geriatric Care Management helps seniors and their families with a wide range of issues, ranging from housing crises to elder abuse to problems receiving benefits.
  • Friendly Visitors volunteers visit home bound seniors.
  • Home Care Registry matches qualified caregivers with seniors.

The need for senior services is increasing exponentially.  For more information about Meals on Wheels and Senior Outreach Services visit

Sentinels of Freedomcatholic

The mission of Sentinels of Freedom is to provide life-changing opportunities for men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces who have suffered severe, permanent injuries post 9/11.  Unlike any other time in our U.S. history, many more severely wounded service members are returning home to face the extreme challenges associated with putting their lives back together. Once these severely wounded Veterans are released from hospitals and rehabilitation centers, they face major issues such as relocation, housing, continuation of their education, employment/career planning, and, in most cases, continued medical care and rehabilitation. Sentinels of Freedom provides the Veteran with the resources and support they require to lead an active, engaged and successful life as they recover from the physical and emotional impact of their injuries.

  • Housing Assistance: Veterans in our program come to us unemployed and seriously disabled, many with special needs and very little income-earning potential.  We subsidize their housing costs while they are in the program to enable them to focus on rebuilding their lives.
  • Job Training and Retention: Once in our program, and depending on the Veteran’s capability, at some point we work with the Veteran to secure employment/training opportunities.
  • Education: Veterans in our program are required to continue their formal education in line with their capabilities and goals.
  • Mentorship/Guidance:  Each Veteran is surrounded by a team of volunteers who act as their advocate; ensure they have the resources needed during school, and assist with securing employment when the Veteran is ready.

For more information, visit