SaddleBrooke Community Outreach Happenings

Gayl Van Natter was recognized as SBCO volunteer for 2020-21.

SBCO Past President Steve Groth presented Marcia Van Ommeran with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Supporter and Volunteer Awards for 2020-21

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

For more than 20 years, SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) has supported food, clothing, and educational programs for local children. Annually SBCO serves a 100-mile corridor stretching from Catalina to Miami to San Carlos, Ariz., which includes more than three counties, eight communities, and approximately 4,000 youngsters. As an all-volunteer nonprofit, SBCO relies on an army of people to help fund and implement its many programs. In April, the SBCO board of directors chose the Supporter and Volunteer of the Year (2020-21).

Tom Young was selected as the Supporter of the Year based on his many years of collecting used golf balls on the SaddleBrooke courses and selling them to local golfers and a wholesale vendor in Phoenix. All sale proceeds are donated to SBCO. Tom took over the program started by Jim Handrigan in 2000. Since 2008, Tom has assisted his father, John, in running the program, and after his father died in 2020, Tom has continued on his own. According to Tom, “The program has generated $220,000 since it began. Since I’ve found fewer good quality balls on the courses over the past few years, the wholesaler has become the larger source of revenue.” Prior to COVID, Tom sold bags of used balls at the barbershop in the SaddleBrooke Business Complex on SaddleBrooke Blvd. Now he is selling them out of his house. If you would like to contribute used balls, donation buckets are located in all three SaddleBrooke clubhouses. Or stop Tom on the golf course. He always has a bucket on his cart for collecting “lost” golf balls!

Gayl Van Natter was chosen as Volunteer of the Year for her service on the Golden Goose Thrift Shop board of directors. The Golden Goose’s board is composed of five members appointed by SBCO and five appointed by Impact of Southern Arizona. Gayl served on the SBCO board of directors for four years, including two years while also serving on the Golden Goose board of directors. Having served two-year terms as the Golden Goose’s executive vice president and president, Gayl is now the organization’s treasurer. On March 16, while serving as president, she received a fateful call from the general manager about COVID-19. The store was promptly closed and an arduous search for financial stability began. Gayl managed to refinance the store’s mortgage, obtained lines of credit, and secured salary coverage for seven employees through the federal Paycheck Protection Program and state Department of Economic Security programs. “Keeping the operation in good financial shape was a 40-hour-a-week task for several months. But we managed to reopen and we’re slowly rebounding financially, which is good for the Golden Goose, SBCO, and Impact.”

Marcia Van Ommeran was given the Lifetime Achievement Award in honor of her 20 years of service to SBCO. Marcia has enthusiastically served on the SBCO Board of Directors, chaired the Angel Program (which became the Make a Difference Program), served as recording secretary, created and sold tribute cards, and delivered Source Books to local doorsteps. In addition, she has supported SBCO’s Walkathon, Home Tour, and Food Drive special events. Marcia has also volunteered for Teen Closet and worked as a receptionist at the SBCO office. In support of SBCO’s educational activities, Marcia has been a scholarship recipient mentor and a tutor for local students.

Volunteering Provides a Sense of Accomplishment

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

Ann Van Sickel became a SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) volunteer after relocating from northern California in 2012. She and her husband, Jim, moved to SaddleBrooke to join their golfing friends, but she soon heard about the many volunteering opportunities in our community. Upon learning that Kids’ Closet was all about helping local children, her interest was piqued.

Since then, Ann has worked as a Kids’ Closet dresser, helping children select and try on clothing, and an inventory re-stocker, ensuring that students have many items from which to choose. As a merchandise receiver, Ann compares the items received against the vendor’s packing slip and SBCO purchase order, tags clothing with the correct bar code and then places them into bins for delivery to the Kids’ Closet facility in Mammoth.

As a result of wearing “many hats,” Ann has been involved in most of the steps Kids’ Closet uses to distribute clothes to local students in need. While she describes many of these tasks as somewhat mundane, she has found that working with other volunteers is very rewarding and makes her happy.

When asked if she has a memorable moment from her volunteer work, Ann replied, “Actually, I have two such moments. The first was a somewhat stressful event when I had to help size a set of clothes for a young boy with a broken leg. The other moment occurs whenever the kids get their bags of clothing and are about to get on their buses. All together they say one big ‘thank you’—that is very satisfying!”

Ann has discovered that while helping a worthy organization is rewarding, volunteer work also helps her keep busy and provides a sense of accomplishment. She would encourage potential SBCO volunteers to give it a try!

Sally Sample Continues to Make a Difference in the Lives of Students

Ron Andrea

Sally Sample always wanted to make a difference. With a master’s degree in nursing, she served as a nursing administrator in several universities across the country. She states, “Throughout my career as a nurse, nurse educator, and nursing administrator, I have searched for ways to support nurses in continuing their education. Never have I been so proud to be a member of the profession as when I saw nurses on the front line during this pandemic.” Sally’s four decades in nursing were recognized when, in 1994, the American Academy of Nursing honored her as a “Living Legend in Nursing.”

Even in retirement, Sally has been actively supporting education by coordinating the volunteers at the annual SaddleBrooke Health Fair. She also serves as a docent at Tohono Chul Park and a volunteer at Sister José Women’s Center.

Sally writes, “Articles about the SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) Scholarship Endowment Program in the SaddleBrooke papers caught my attention. I was so impressed with the effort these high school students make to balance their studies with work and family responsibilities! They deserve our help and encouragement. I have contributed a one-time gift to the scholarship endowment program, but more importantly, I have included it in my will for future generations of students who will need assistance. Scholarship funds provide hope for students who dare to seize opportunities that will make a difference, not only in their lives, but in the lives of others.”

Community outreach scholarships make a difference for students in the Copper Corridor by providing funding to those who not only need the financial assistance, but also have outstanding grades and exceptional community service. Donations to the SBCO Scholarship Endowment Program are professionally invested by the Community Foundation of Southern Arizona (CFSA) and only the earnings on these investments are used to provide scholarships. In this way, donations continue to provide support for students for generations to come.

Tax-deductible donations can be made any of four ways:

* A personal check—sent directly to CFSA—and made payable to the Community Foundation of Southern Arizona with “SBCO Endowment” in the memo line

* A distribution from your IRA to CFSA for the SBCO Scholarship Endowment Fund

* Include CFSA, as the manager of the SBCO Scholarship Endowment Fund, as a beneficiary in your trust or estate plan

* In-kind donations of real property such as real estate, an automobile, or stocks and bonds

Only monetary or in-kind donations valued at $5,000 or more are accepted for this fund. Consult your tax advisor about the potential tax benefits of any donation.

Donations must be sent to:

The Community Foundation of Southern Arizona

SBCO Scholarship Endowment Fund

5049 E Broadway, Ste. 201

Tucson, AZ 85711

For more information, contact Ron Andrea at [email protected] or call the SBCO office at 520-825-3302. You can also visit the SBCO website at

Summer Enrichment Program

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) has again funded a grant request from the Mammoth-San Manuel Unified School District Community for a summer enrichment and sports camp. This very successful program was awarded a $7,000 grant to cover the cost of supplies, cleaning, two field trips, and play equipment. The school district will provide $2,000 in funding for the program.

The camp will be open to students ages 4 to 12 enrolled in kindergarten through sixth grade and living in Mammoth, San Manuel, Dudleyville, Reddington, or Aravaipa. Some students will be enrolled in summer school in the morning for a variety of activities, including art, cooking, games, and sports, while other students will participate in a morning sports camp. In the afternoon, sports camp will be provided to students who spent the morning in summer school. All students will have the opportunity to participate in the school’s free summer breakfast and lunch program.

The goals of the program are to:

* Reunite students after months spent in isolation due to the pandemic

* Increase student confidence and a sense of accomplishment through group activities

* Keep students active beyond the regular school year

Between 60 and 100 students are expected to attend the camp to be held from June 3 through 30.

Teen Closet Volunteers Needed

Nancy McCluskey-Moore

For the past two decades, the SaddleBrooke Community Outreach (SBCO) Teen Closet program has enabled students between the ages of 13 and 18 to purchase new clothing and school supplies. Students from San Manuel, Canyon Del Oro High School, Ironwood Ridge, Hayden-Winkelman Unified School District, and Superior high schools eagerly shop in Oro Valley Target and Ross stores with the assistance of a volunteer and a $200 budget.

Eligible students enter the program their freshman year and they can participate during all four years of high school if they meet program requirements, which include:

* Six hours of community service

* C or better grade average

* Good school attendance

* A meeting with their counselor each semester

This year’s returning students worked very hard to maintain their GPAs and complete six hours of community service during the COVID pandemic. These students should be commended for their perseverance.

SBCO Teen Closet volunteers serve as the students’ personal shoppers, tracking their spending prior to checkout, bringing alternate sizes of clothing to the dressing rooms, encouraging students to consider the fit and durability of clothing choices and offering advice about how to stretch their budgets. The students appreciate the support and the volunteers delight in helping young people select clothing. Many of the students not only acquire the clothing and supplies they need for school, but also become smart shoppers, comparing prices, and assessing the value of various items.

Shopping dates for the coming fall semester are July 26, 27, 28, and 29 from 5 to 7 p.m. each day. Currently 62 teenagers, including 35 new ninth graders and 27 returning students will be brought by their parents to shop. Vivian Enrico, Teen Closet coordinator, anticipates about 15 students will shop each night, requiring the same number of volunteers each time. The shopping trips are held at the Rooney Ranch Shopping Center in Oro Valley. This is a very rewarding experience for both students and volunteers.

We need your help! If you are interested in being a volunteer on any of these shopping days, please send an email to [email protected] or call the SBCO office at 520-825-3302.