Congratulations to the 2017 NorCalPCA Grant Recipients!

Thursday December 7, 2017


to the 2017 NorCalPCA Grant Recipients!

We are proud to announce two projects that have received funding from the NorCalPCA Grants Program!


1. $2,000 to Save Rivers to build a pontoon and jetty for the Long Ekang community in Sarawak, Borneo.
Save Rivers is an indigenous-led grassroots organization and a partner of the Borneo Project, located in Berkeley, CA. NorCalPCA members Liz Varnhagen and Bruce Moen are active in the Borneo Project. The NorCalPCA Grant will be used to purchase project materials.

Long Ekang, located on the Baram River, has a population of more than 500 people, many aged 50+. The river is the commercial and transportation lifeline for the community.



The pontoon and the jetty, built over 30 years ago, was damaged by flooding in May 2017. A construction plan and project supervisors have been identified. $3,500 was already donated for the project. The total cost estimate is $8,540. Other funds needed will be raised by the community itself.

2. $1,000 for the composting latrines project in Alto Playon, Darien Region, Panama.
The 280 inhabitants of Alto Playon live on an indigenous reserve and follow a subsistence life of farming, fishing and hunting. This project was proposed by NorCalPCA member Moiz Kapadia, RPCV Panama, who served there in 2010-2012. We will hold NorCalPCA funds for this grant up to July 31, 2018 for Moiz and his team to raise an additional $1,000. If the outside support is not received, the funds will be returned to Grants.

NorCalPCA Grants previously awarded $2,000 in 2015 for the Alto Playon project. After several obstacles were overcome, the funds were released in Spring 2017 for actual construction. With the recent completion of more latrines, the Alto Playon community is very enthusiastic to continue building them. The community members provide all labor needed and 40% of the materials cost. The Grants Committee likes this project and wants to encourage Moiz Kapadia and his colleagues to look beyond NorCalPCA Grants for the additional funds they require. By contributing our name and part of the financial support, we hope to encourage other funders to provide the amount necessary for the Alto Playon project to continue.


Thank YOU!

Funds for the NorCalPCA Grants program come from the sale of International Calendars each year as well as individual contributors and occasional fundraisers. We are grateful to the following donors who made direct financial contributions to the NorCalPCA Grants Program between October 2016 and November 2017. Your generosity gave us an even greater opportunity to impact community development in the spirit of Peace Corps!

Pamela Boyle
Janet Espinosa
Anne Fitzgerald
Lee Gallery
Andrew Grimstad
Emily Hradec
Marilyn Hyde
Rick Kaye
Sandra Leon
Richard Morten
Susan Neyer & Pete Johnson
Elaine Neufeldt
Bryce Norton
Rossmoor Residents
Karen Rice
Virginia and Thomas Rue
Janet Thibault
Liz Varnhagen
Meredith Miller Vostrejs
Beany Wezelman

Donate Now!


Help Support the NorCalPCA Grants Program

with your purchase of the 2018 International Calendar
The calendars make great gifts for the holidays!

Each year the Madison, WI, RPCV group produces a spectacular calendar. This stunning calendar not only features photos of people in Peace Corps countries, but also many interesting facts about the countries and special events to commemorate every day of the year.

Buy Now!

$12.00 ea. + shipping


 2015 Grants Project Update

NorCalPCA Member Janet Espinosa recently provided information of her Honduran community of Yorito, which in 2015 received a grant from NorCalPCA.

“The $2,000 grant inspired the community volunteers to continue to improve their communities with more latrines and pilas as well as a few roofs and cement floors. The family gardens are doing extremely well and health is improving. Now we are expanding to water filters that they have learned to construct.”

Janet has continued to support the efforts, through her partnership with her local church community in Gilroy, California, and her trips to the Yorito Community. She reported that local Honduran volunteers have worked in 6 area medical clinics.  In recognition of their efforts, those volunteers were provided a small amount of money to buy supplies for a community sanitation project of their choice.

“Just wanted you to know that the grant caused miracles to happen and its benefits continue.”



NorCalPCA Grants Program History

NorCalPCA has had a Grants Program since 1981. The addition of internet and cell phones changed the methods we use to communicate with our Peace Corps communities, but there is still great need for community support throughout the past and current Peace Corps world. The NorCalPCA Grants Program recognizes a few projects each year where a small amount of financial aid can have a large impact on a community. We look to current Peace Corps Volunteers in the field and NorCalPCA members to guide us to projects that our worthy of our support.

Click here to learn more about NorCalPCA’s Grants Program and how to apply!


Thank you to our Grants Committee!

Our sincere thanks to the Grants Committee for their diligence in reviewing the proposals and making a decision. In 2017, the Grants Committee Members were:

Marikay Batina, East Bay
Theresa Cameranesi, San Francisco
Dorrie Dodge, North Bay
Jillian Geissler, San Francisco
Marilyn Hyde, Santa Cruz-Monterey Bay, Committee Chair
Rick Kaye, North Bay, (via e-mail)
Dick Morten, San Francisco
Jim Munroe-Davidson, North Bay
Susan Neyer, East Bay
Holly Uber, Board Liaison to the Grants Committee
Meredith Miller Vostrejs, South Bay

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