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MSC Foundation: A Homegrown Effort, A Huge Effect

Photo courtesy guidedogs.org

Photo courtesy guidedogs.org

Each month, theSaundersBlog spotlights non-profit organizations from within Manatee, Sarasota, and Charlotte Counties that have benefited from the MSC Foundation.  Living and working in this community, the agents and staff at Michael Saunders & Company choose to give back with voluntary contributions.  In the last two years alone, the MSC Foundation has contributed nearly $80,000 to support these special programs. Here, we feature Community Youth Development and Southeastern Guide Dogs.


Community Youth Development
Realtor June Howell with the Palmer Ranch office nominated Community Youth Development (CYD) for an MSC Foundation grant. CYD is an organization that serves thousands of middle and high school students. It creates environments, events, and activities that cultivate leadership and support positive life choices. Since 1996, CYD has worked to treat youth with respect and empower them to address the issues affecting their lives.

June assists with fundraising for the nonprofit. What’s more, her daughter, Kristen, went through STAR Leadership Training, a program where high school youths are taught how to be more civically engaged. Upon completion, students are placed on a local committee/board as a full voting member. After her training, Kristen participated at the Community Foundation of Sarasota County. June explained, “It helped her to grow and be comfortable around adults and demonstrated that her opinions are valued. She also learned to present herself very well.”

June pointed out that by getting students civically involved, it encourages them to continue with participation in the Sarasota community once they finish school.

“Having the Foundation fund CYD has been very rewarding for me. It matters that I am contributing towards an organization that I believe in. I am happy to be a part of it.”

Southeastern Guide Dogs
Southeastern Guide Dogs has been providing guide dogs to people with visual impairments for more than 30 years.  Manager of the Bradenton office, Pam Ali, requested their Paws for Patriots program be considered for a Foundation grant.  The service pairs guide dogs with veterans who have visual impairments or suffer Post-Traumatic Stress allowing them to gain confidence and navigate the world through the eyes of a faithful new friend.

Pam felt this was an important cause for soldiers who sacrifice a great deal for our country – often surviving extreme conditions before returning home. She noted that though Southeastern Guide Dogs is a hometown organization, their services reach across the entire nation.

“I am thrilled and honored that through the Foundation, I have the opportunity to provide to the community and help make a difference.”

  • User Gravatar Mary Smedley
    September 26th, 2013

    What a great organization to work closly with the men and woman who serve our country. These dogs are making a difference in so many lives. Pam-thank you for supporting such a great cause.

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