Community Projects

Gilroy Foundation has provided financial support and guidance for a number of recent community non-profit projects, including:

Christopher High School Sports Complex

The Don Christopher Family wanted to provide a home sports facility for football, track, soccer, field hockey, lacrosse and P.E. classes. The Family, along with Christopher Ranch, Pinnacle Bank, Black Bear Diner, Legacy Club donors and the community and school at large, made donations to Gilroy Foundation, who worked with Gilroy Unified School District to complete this state-of-the-art Complex.

Gilroy Center for the Arts

The City of Gilroy purchased the property for the proposed Gilroy Center for the Arts in 2004. With construction plans for the new Center on hold, the Gilroy Arts Alliance asked the City if they could rent the existing building as an office and an arts space. The Alliance cleaned up the building and opened it for small arts and community events in 2010. In 2011, Don and Karen Christopher came to the Center for Gilroy Foundation’s Annual Meeting and Charitable Giving Presentation and were impressed by the Alliance’s dedication to having an arts center, so they asked the Foundation to help them improve the facility. With their generous donation, the Foundation was able to hire a contractor to install new flooring, new lighting, a caterer’s kitchen, and a handicapped restroom as well as improvement to the exterior, including a lighted marquee.

Salvation Army Shower Project

In 2009, Craig and Jacqui Merriman wanted to help the homeless population in Gilroy and felt they needed facilities to help them be able to present themselves in the community with pride and encouragement to seek employment. The Foundation approached the Salvation Army at Church and Fifth Street, which already was offering daily lunch to our homeless population. We hired a contractor to build two showers, including one with handicap access, as well as laundry facilities for the public’s use to allow them to have clean clothing.

Dog Park Improvements

Craig and Jacqui Merriman are dog lovers as well! When the City of Gilroy opened the Las Animas Dog Park, there were limited city funds to do so; no trees, very few benches, etc. With a generous donation from the Merrimans in memory of their son, Sean, the Foundation was able to purchase lovely trees for the park, build a shade structure, install additional benches, and put up a community bulletin board in both the large and small dog parks.

Gilroy and Christopher High School Van Donation

Don Christopher felt that both Christopher High School and Gilroy High School needed transportation for staff and students to attend the various club and sporting events away from their perspective campuses. With no funding for school buses, the Christopher’s asked the Foundation to purchase two vans for each school. Mission accomplished, and both schools have two vans each, proudly displaying their Cougar and Mustang pride!

Gilroy High School Chromebooks Donation

Again, the Christopher family wanted high school students in Gilroy to have more access to technology. With another generous donation, the Foundation sought out the best Chromebooks, software, and charging cart for Gilroy High School, which arrived in the Fall of 2014.


Fiscal Sponsorships

Gilroy Foundation offers groups, who are in the process of meeting the requirements to attain their 501(c)3 status, a Fiscal Sponsorship. The Foundation holds all funds raised by the group and they can raise money under the Foundation’s Federal Tax ID number. A Fiscal Sponsorship Agreement is signed between the group and the Foundation. The group is encouraged to complete their paperwork with the State and Federal government within one year. The Foundation has assisted many local groups in attaining their own nonprofit status: Canada de los Osos, Gilroy Farmers Market, Gilroy Compassion Center, Gilroy Student Takko Exchange Program, Save the Miller Red Barn,  South County Tail Waggers, Downtown Paseo Project, Gilroy Hot Springs Conservancy, Gilroy 150 Committee, and One Giving Tree.

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