Providing an opportunity for every person
to help children heal, learn and thrive.


Holiday Heroes Virtual Gala & Online Auction


On Thursday, December 3, 2020 the Children’s Foundation of America will host a Virtual Gala and Online Auction as part of our annual Holiday Heroes Campaign to benefit children who have been removed from their homes due to abuse, neglect, and abandonment. The Foundation supports these children in out-of-home-care placements, such as foster care, residential therapeutic programs, and mental health settings.

The Foundation was created to Be the Difference and to provide trauma-affected children with the necessary programs and services to help them heal, learn, and thrive. The proceeds from this special online fundraising event will provide services like tutoring, art therapy, college scholarships, emancipation or transitional living assistance, and holiday festivities and gifts for children in foster care.

The public is invited to help make the holidays brighter for children in need by participating in our 2020 Holiday Heroes Virtual Gala and Online Auction, streamed live on YouTube on December 3 with online auction in conjunction. Stay tuned for announcements about special guests in the coming weeks!

Watch Live!


Holiday Heroes Gift Drive

Bringing Holiday Joy To Children In Need

The mission of the Children’s Foundation of America is to provide an opportunity for every person to help children lean, learn and thrive by supporting children affected by abuse, neglect or abandonment. Join our Holiday Heroes campaign to help thousands of local displaced youth in foster care, residential therapeutic programs, shelters, under-served communities, and children identified by their school as in-need. The circumstances these children face is beyond their control. Help a child feel loved and cherished during the holidays. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we will not be conducting our gift wrapping fundraiser this year, but please see the options below for ways to get involved and help a child in need this Christmas. Contact the Children’s Foundation of America at 800.KIDS.730 or


Gift Drive

Donate a new, unwrapped gift for ages 0-18. Each year we provide thousands of children with holiday gifts of their own. Help us share the joy of the season to children in need! Collection Locations:

Children’s Foundation of America Warehouse
Donations can be shipped or dropped off Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
1326 W. 9th St., Upland, CA 91786.

Montclair Place
Drop off at the wish tree at the center of the mall near Santa during regular mall hours.
5060 E N Montclair Plaza Ln, Montclair, CA 91763

Claremont Village
Visit various locations in Claremont’s downtown shops to drop off gifts.
Claremont, CA

Stay tuned for more locations.



Help the Foundation purchase gifts and other needs for children in need by making a tax-deductible donation. Click the donate button below or mail a check to Children’s Foundation of America. P.O. Box 1210, Claremont, CA 91711.



CFA’s 2019 Holiday Heroes Campaign Brought Hope and Joy to Over 2,000 Children

The Children’s Foundation of America (CFA) left 2019 strong, serving 2,067 children in need during our Holiday Heroes campaign! Children varying from foster care, residential therapeutic programs, shelters, under-served community centers, or identified by school districts as in need, were supported through 14 organizations.

Organizations Served:
Trinity Youth Services
Ontario Montclair School District
McKinley Children’s Center
Oak Grove Center
David and Margaret Youth and Family Services
A Grater Hope Foundation
Inland Temporary Homes
New Dawn Group Home
San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools
Upland Unified School District
St. Anne’s
House of Ruth
Concerned Citizens for the Development
Building Bridges Foster Family Agency

One of the organizations we supported thanked us stating, “The holidays are a complex time for foster children. The season can be painful as they remember the family and friends they are apart from,” said A Greater Hope Director of Development, Amanda Bell. “Your support made them rejoice, laugh, smile and even sing, leaving them with memories to last a lifetime. For this, I am truly grateful,” she said.

We are greatly appreciative to Montclair Place for once again hosting us at their mall to conduct our Holiday Heroes Gift Wrap Station and Fundraiser. This year, we raised ­­­­­over $5,000 in gift wrapping donations! Thank you to the amazing Montclair Place management and marketing team as well as our wonderful neighboring businesses who supported our cause through the holidays.

This year, we were helped by 272 volunteers, who spent a total of 875.25 hours of their time wrapping gifts at our mall fundraiser, prepping for our campaign, and distributing gifts at the warehouse. We were so grateful to businesses and service groups like Lion’s Heart, Wells Fargo and DoubleTree by Hilton for forming teams filling full days of shifts! Sysco generously provided snacks and bottled water for all of our volunteers.

With the help of our amazing gift drive locations, we were able to collect nearly $60,000 worth of toys and gifts for displaced youth. One special donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, provided Footlocker gift cards for each of the foster teens on our list to pick out new shoes for Christmas. This was a big request among the age group this year and we were so happy to have a partner to fulfill this need! Special recognition goes to Jorge Merlos of Integrity Home Finance, Dr. Robert Rosas of Ahava Chiropractic, and Kevin Mink of Image Source USA for going above and beyond to advocate for children in need and encouraging others to join them in being the difference.

Gift Drive Locations:
Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Lewis LLP.
Image Source USA
Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
Mijac Alarm
JCM Engineering
NRI Distribution
The Hillman Group
The Costantino Group
Scripps College
Claremont Center for Spiritual Living
Plum Ridge Bottle Shop
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Claremont
White, Nelson, Diehl, Evans LLP
Ben Bridge Jewelers
Ahava Chiropractic
Agape Movement Christian Church
Casa Moreno
Laemmle Movie Theater Claremont
Wynder Law Inc.
Foothill Learning Annex
Christina Jackson
Sandals Church
Jorge Merlos/Integrity Home Finance/MBM Credit Solutions
Riverside Cars & Coffee/San Bernardino Spartans
City of Claremont Council Member Ed Reece

The success of this year’s campaign would not have been possible without the help of our volunteers, gift drive locations, sponsors and donors. All funds raised during the campaign were used to provide the kids with holiday festivities and will be used to provide support to children in need for the year to come. Thank you to everyone who helped to bring hope and joy to children who need it most.

2019 Holiday Heroes Sponsors:
Claremont Lincoln University
AMC Solutions
Claremont Rotary

Isabel Millward-Pena
Isabel contributes content for our social media, blog, newsletters and promotional materials. She recently earned a bachelor’s degree in English from California State University San Bernardino and is currently working on her master’s degree. Isabel began working with our team as an intern and, luckily for us, never left. Isabel primarily works as Clerical for Trinity Youth Services. Prior to her work there, she was a substitute instructional aid and a supervisor at Starbucks. She has also volunteered as an aid at local elementary schools and notably achieved “Partner of the Quarter” at Starbucks in 2017.

Volunteer Spotlight: Lion’s Heart Service

Lion’s Heart Service is a nonprofit group that curates, creates, and encourages opportunities for teens and children to get involved in their community. Their Upland chapter rigorously donates their time to making a difference, accumulating a total of 77 volunteer hours with the Children’s Foundation of America since their chapter was founded in 2017. They’ve volunteered at rescue centers, senior homes, local food banks, churches and various other organizations.

With the Foundation, Lion’s Heart has assisted in our Back-to-School drive and our Holiday Heroes campaign.

Chapter Coordinator Sylvia Tam, is dedicated to creating a culture of giving in both her community and family. “I have to have a leadership mind set, so I can create a community of helpers,” she said. Through Lion’s Heart, Sylvia’s children and group “don’t have to think twice about volunteering. Our group goes wherever needed.”

Sylvia’s daughter, Vanessa Wong, founded their chapter to encourage the people around her to get involved. “Friendship is her priority and she wanted to do something as a team. Volunteering is always on her mind,” Sylvia said.

In 2018, the Upland City Council recognized Lion’s Heart members Vanessa Wong, Alyssa Mao and Karis Yoon with the Presidential Volunteer Service Award for accumulating 75-100 volunteer hours. Benjamin Wong, Sylvia’s son and frequent Lion’s Heart volunteer, also received an award from the Kiwanis Club.

Creating a culture of giving

Lion’s Heart holds leadership and gratitude as their core values. Teaching youth to volunteer in their free time is invaluable to Lion’s Heart. Sylvia’s hope is to spread awareness about the many volunteer opportunities. “I tell the adults you have to get your kids out there and do this,” she said. “There are so many parents who want to get their families involved in volunteering and don’t know where and how.” Lion’s Heart and the Children’s Foundation of America can help!

Sylvia believes there are some real benefits to volunteering, saying, “It is a form of therapy, to zoom out of the business world and find some happiness in what we’re doing in the moment.” She said working with the Foundation is “is great, because it’s helping kids that are at a turning point in their lives, where they can go forward.” She stressed that volunteering benefits everyone involved, boosting needed skills that transfer to all areas of work and life.

Syvlia’s Lion’s Heart group is passionate about being involved, and the children “choose volunteering as their top priority.” CFA is supported by great volunteers like Sylvia and Lion’s Heart. If you would like to know more about getting your service group involved, click here!

Jose Rojas, CFA Intern
Jose is an English literature major at California State University San Bernardino. As a CFA intern, Jose attends and photographs events and writes for our blog. He has previously volunteered with The Prison Library Project. In his free time, you can catch him playing tennis or cramming for his next exam.

1,800 Children Served Through 2018 CFA Holiday Heroes Campaign

This December, the Children’s Foundation of America provided holiday gifts to 1,800 displaced children. Youth served were in foster care, residential therapeutic programs, shelters, under-served community centers, or were identified by school districts as in need. This year, we partnered with the following 16 organizations to bring joy and hope to trauma-affected children:

Ark Family Homes
Ontario Montclair School District
McKinley Children’s Center
Uncommon Good
Trinity Youth Services
Oak Grove Center
Inland Empire Residential
Fields Comprehensive
Greater Hope Foundation
Inland Temporary Homes
New Dawn Group Home
San Bernardino County Schools
Upland Unified School District
St. Anne’s
The Veteran’s Center
Pomona Unified School District

In all, 2,365 toys and other items were sorted and distributed by nearly 100 volunteers. Thanks to the community and our business partners, we raised over $19,000 in donations and collected $33,000 worth of toy donations! Thank you to this year’s box sponsors and business partners:

Heirloom Claremont
Claremont Village Marketing Group
Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard
Image Source
Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
Mijac Alarm
JCM Engineering
NRI Distribution
Scripps College
Claremont Craft Ales
Farmers Insurance
Vinmar Captial Group
Plume Ridge Bottle Shop
Sweet Obsessions Cheesecakes
Chaffey College
White Nelson Diehl Evans
Montclair Place
Foundation 4 Life
CG Realtors

Additionally, Lykes Creatives partnered with us to raise funds at Claremont’s Holiday Promenade. Donors were happy to contribute a few dollars and in exchange for a holiday themed photo by Lykes Creatives!

Without the support and generosity of our Holiday Hero volunteers and donors, the success of this campaign would not be possible. 191 volunteers contributed hours of their time to raise funds at our gift wrapping station at Montclair Place. We are so grateful to the mall for supplying a full store space for us the past two years! Funds raised provided holiday festivities to foster youth and will continue to be used throughout the upcoming year to support special requests for things like contact lenses, prom and graduation attire, yearbooks, music lessons, scholarships and more.

Jenelle Phillips, Development Specialist
Jenelle oversees the day-to-day operations and staffing of the Foundation, which includes fundraising events, volunteer coordination, community outreach and donations. Above all, Jenelle’s focus is to identify and access resources in order to help children heal, learn and thrive. She earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from California State University Fullerton and has become very involved in the community. She is active in her church, owns an art gallery, organizes the local art walk and is on the executive board of the downtown district’s marketing group.

A Holiday Message From the Executive Director


Dear Friends,

Join the Children’s Foundation of America in helping more than 1,500 children this holiday season. These children are living in foster care, residential treatment, mental health placement or shelter care. The holidays should be a time of tremendous joy for children and their families, but many of these children who have suffered abuse, neglect and other severe trauma, will rely on the compassion and care of people just like you and I to bring light and love to the holidays.

Just a small gift will make an enormous difference to a child. I am asking you to consider a donation of $10, $20, $100, or whatever you can spare to provide gifts and holiday meals to the children. 100% of all contributions to our Holiday Heroes campaign will be used by the Children’s Foundation of America to directly benefit children in need.

Together, we can positively impact the lives of so many children. Together, we can show them they are loved and cherished and remembered during this holiday season and throughout the year.

May you and your loved ones share a warm, wonderful holiday season.

With gratitude,

Cher Ofstedahl, Executive Director


Children’s Foundation of America
PO Box 1210, Claremont, CA 91711
800.KIDS.7730 |
501(c)(3) Nonprofit Organization

CFA Spreads Holiday Cheer with Gift Wrapping for a Cause

As part of our ongoing “Holiday Heroes” campaign, The Children’s Foundation of America’s gift wrapping station has made several more appearances to spread joy, hope, and the opportunity to be involved in a good cause.

Hauser & Wirth

CFA was invited to participate in Hauser & Wirth’s annual Holiday Market, allowing us to extend our work into the heart of Downtown Los Angeles. Among a wide array of hand-crafted goods, artisan products and food, CFA was there to wrap gifts for donations. In addition to wrapping gifts, our volunteers sold holiday cards designed by kids at Trinity Youth Services and raised awareness about foster youth. All wrapping supplies were generously donated by Hauser & Wirth.

Montclair Place

At Montclair Place in the Inland Empire, CFA has a storefront dedicated to gift wrapping. Shoppers are encouraged to stop by and have their freshly bought gifts wrapped for donations to support foster youth. The gift wrapping supplies donated by Hauser & Wirth and The Helpful Honda People were instrumental in helping us raise funds! In a time of giving, it is paramount to support those without access to regular commodities to ensure everyone can have a happy holiday season. CFA is there to help bridge that gap and provide an a opportunity for every person to help children heal, learn, and thrive.

Thank you to all our volunteers and fellow organizations that provided donations, assistance and support to benefit children in need. Our Montclair wrapping station will be open December 14-24 during regular mall hours to provide stress-free holiday shopping, last-minute wrapping and the opportunity to volunteer, support and get involved!

Become a Holiday Hero! Contact us at 1-800-KIDS-730 or email

Story and photos by Jose Rojas
Jose is an English literature major at California State University San Bernardino. As a CFA intern, Jose  primarily attends and photographs events, and writes for our blog. He has previously volunteered with The Prison Library Project. In his free time you can catch him playing tennis or cramming for his next exam.

CFA Kicks off Holiday Season

‘Tis the season of giving, and on November 16 at Claremont’s annual Holiday Promenade, the Children’s foundation of America offered an opportunity to give to those in need!

Claremont’s Holiday Promenade kicked off the winter season with a variety of performers. Among them were the Voices of Christmas carolers and the Swing Cats. Booths featuring local businesses and artisan goods filled the Claremont Village. CFA had a gift wrapping booth set up near the main stage at the Claremont Depot. Volunteers wrapped shoppers’ gifts for donations. Wish tags were on display from children in foster care so that guests could fulfill requests as they did their holiday shopping. Read more »

holiday heroes 2017

CFA Holiday Heroes Bring Joy and Support to 1,660 Children in Need

holiday heroes 2017

This year’s Children’s Foundation of America “Holiday Heroes” campaign brought a message of joy and hope to 1,660 children in need. Several groups and individuals came together to donate gifts and their time wrapping presents for donations at Montclair Place.

With the help of about 100 dedicated volunteers, the Children’s Foundation of America raised over $10,000 in donations to help children in need. Donations helped provide holiday activities for foster families, outings for residential youth to places like Knott’s Berry Farm and provided gifts for displaced children. Funds raised will continue to benefit programs throughout the year that serve youth in need, including college scholarships for foster youth.

Creating a Culture of Giving

The Children’s Foundation of America received a record number of toy donations, with thousands of gifts pouring in. Several businesses set out gift drive boxes to encourage their staff and clients to donate. This year’s “Holiday Heroes” business partners included:

Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard
Image Source USA
Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
West Coast Dermatology Billers
Mijac Alarm
JCM Engineering
NRI Distribution
Advantage Resourcing
Hillman Group
CG Realtors
Scripps College Intercollegiate Feminist Department
Claremont Craft Ales
Center for Spiritual Living
Farmers Insurance
Vinmar Capital Group
PERL Mortgage
Divco West
Plume Ridge Bottle Shop
Heirloom Claremont

Community Impact

Beyond our gift drive box partners, the Foundation received an overwhelming, positive response from members of the community, including the Claremont Chamber of Commerce. Through these various partnerships, the Foundation was able to provide multiple gifts to approximately 1,660 children in need by expanding the number of organizations supported. The Foundation team selected organizations which serve youth in poverty, foster care, residential programs and shelters. The Children’s Foundation of America provided holiday support to each of the following organizations this year:

Trinity Youth Services
Foothill Family Shelter
McKinley Children’s Center
Oak Grove Center
Inland Empire Residential Center
Greater Hope Foundation
Fields Comprehensive Youth Services
David and Margaret Youth & Family Services
Uncommon Good
ARK Homes Rancho Cucamonga
Ontario-Montclair School District Family & Collaborative Services

What a Gift Means to a Child

According to UNICEF, childhood poverty is defined as lacking certain items essential to healthy and normal development. The opportunity to celebrate special occasions such as Christmas is an important aspect of childhood that every child deserves to enjoy. The goal of the Children’s Foundation of America is to remind displaced children that they are indeed special and valued, as they learn to cope and heal from the trauma they have experienced.

To find out how you can help the Children’s Foundation of America and bring normalcy to a child in need, visit our Get Involved page.

Children's Foundation Kelly BaumannKelly BaumannAmeriCorps VIP Fellow
Kelly specializes in creating and optimizing digital content for the Children’s Foundation of America blog. She has ten years of experience as a marketer and has held a variety of positions including content writer, social media coordinator, public relations executive and content strategist. At Children’s Foundation of America, Kelly focuses on sharing stories and information to educate the public about the issues faced by children that Children’s Foundation of America serves.
Tel: (909)426-0773 | Email:

Holiday Heroes

Holiday Heroes Gift Drive a Major Success

Holiday Heroes
At the end of each year, the Children’s Foundation of America focuses on making children’s holiday wishes come true through our annual Holiday Heroes campaign. The initiative features a toy drive, gift wrapping fundraiser and the involvement of several volunteers and partners.

Wells FargoHoliday Heroes Fulfill Wishes

The Children’s Foundation of America’s Holiday Heroes gift drive was a resounding success. The Foundation was able to fulfill the wishes of nearly 400 children in Trinity Youth Services foster care and residential treatment programs. Children submitted three wishes and the Foundation was able to grant them all. For younger children, the wishes were mainly toys and games and the older children requested gift cards for retailers, entertainment and restaurants. The Foundation is proud to support the children of Trinity, all of whom have been removed from their homes due to abuse, neglect or other traumatic circumstance. The Foundation was also able to provide toys and other items to the Benjamin E. Jones Community Resource Center for their “Sweet Little Angels” gift giveaway program, benefiting children of families living in poverty.


The Gift Wrapping booth at the Plaza West Covina mall, which was staffed by volunteers who contributed 501 hours of time, brought in nearly $9,000. “Giving Tree” wishes, granted by shoppers, brought in gifts for children totaling $1,544. Our sincerest thanks to Laura Gonzales and the management of the Plaza West Covina for their support.

Our Partners

Fenceworks of Riverside contributed an overwhelmingly generous supply of gift cards for teens and toys, bikes, helmets and jackets for children of all ages. Holiday Heroes Toy Box Sponsors included West Coast Dermatology Billers, Toshiba, Advantage Resourcing, Mijac Alarm, JCM Engineering, Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP, and Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. Special thanks to Foundation Trustee, Carla Kingsbury, for encouraging Wells Fargo to increase their level of giving every year for the past five years.

Image Source
Image Source USA
raised the bar on both a personal and corporate level. Trustee Judith Jarvis, Vice President of Sales for Image Source, personally made a significant contribution, then challenged Image Source President, Brad Craft, to match her gift. She then gathered an additional donation from her sales team with their Branch Manager, Jordan Craft, leading the way. The total gift from the company totaled more than $7,000 and was used to fulfill individual children’s wishes and larger shared gifts such as sports equipment and new library books for youth living in residential placement settings.

Girl Scout Troop #1455 donated toiletries for teen girls and the Saddleback Kiwanis Club donated Therapy Dolls. The Today Show Charitable Foundation donated stuffed animals. These are just a few of the examples of generosity from some of the Foundation’s treasured partners.

“Giving Trees” were sponsored by the Claremont Chamber of Commerce and Tapestry Church Claremont. Heirloom Claremont hosted a “Make ‘N Take” ornament fundraiser and The Colony at Loft 204 gallery collected donations by selling Christmas cards designed by foster children. Several guests to the Claremont events Giving Tuesday and Holiday Promenade collected wishes from the Foundation’s “Giving Tree” and dropped off toys to the office throughout November and December.

The Board of Trustees and staff of the Children’s Foundation of America want to thank all of the donors and volunteers for making this year such a tremendous success. You have truly put the “Merry” in “Merry Christmas” for children who need it most. You are all truly Holiday Heroes!

Holiday Heroes


Rebecca Ustrell, Community Outreach Coordinator
Becky acts as liaison for Children’s Foundation of America. On any given day she could be meeting with potential donors, coordinating a fundraising event, recruiting volunteers and forming partnerships with other nonprofits that can benefit from the help of our Foundation. Becky is currently studying sociology as well as fine art and helps organize the Claremont Art Walk. You will most likely find Becky working on freelance illustrations, playing the cello, mingling at a chamber of commerce event or volunteering in the community.