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H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation gives nearly $1.8M to valley charities

After six years of presenting $25,000 to a new nonprofit each month, the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation ends the year with an accumulated $1.8 million in Coachella Valley Spotlight grants. The partnership between the foundation and the Palm Springs television affiliate, CBS Local 2, has provided funding and media exposure to a diverse selection of charitable groups in Southern California’s Coachella Valley since December 2008.

Grant recipients of the Coachella Valley Spotlight are selected from a pool of applicants at the end of each year by the CBS Local 2 Advisory Board, which includes members of the community and representatives from the Berger Foundation. Along with the funds, each pre-selected 501(c)3 nonprofit organization is featured on CBS Local 2’s “Eye on the Desert,” a daily segment that features news and entertainment from around the area. The selected charities also receive television public service announcements and are showcased on the website during a designated month.

“Most nonprofits need two things, funding and exposure,” said Ronald Auen, President of the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation. “When we award grants we like to let our community know about it in order to create more awareness about the deserving organizations that still need more financial assistance and volunteer support. We believe the Coachella Valley Spotlight accomplishes this.”

Since its inception in December 2008, the Coachella Valley Spotlight has benefited children, seniors, military troops, the homeless, animals, people in drug and alcohol recovery, people with special needs and many other social services in the area, which is approaching a population of 500,000. An open call for applicants went out in August, and more than 85 organizations that serve the Coachella Valley applied for the 2015 awards. CBS Local 2 will announce the first honoree of the new year in January.

“Organizations can only receive the Coachella Valley Spotlight once, which means each year we are able to showcase 12 new nonprofits doing great work in our community,” said Mike Stutz, General Manager of Gulf California Broadcast Company, which owns and operates CBS Local 2. “We look forward to telling more of these inspirational stories in 2015 through our valued partnership with the Berger Foundation.”

Information about past recipients can be found on the “Coachella Valley Spotlight” page of The H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation is a private foundation that generously supports educational and other charitable projects. Since 1988, the Berger Foundation has contributed over $500 million to charities throughout Southern California and the United States. For more information visit

KESQ News Team


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