Charity Work







Spark Of Love 2015

President of the San Fernando Valley Metro Chapter Saul Krochmal, IPSSA Region 3 Director Ivan Vance, Richard Wolfe from the San Fernando Valley Chapter and Jill DiGiovanni from PoolCorp delivered toys and a hefty check in the amount of $2,840.00, collected from the following IPSSA Chapters: San Fernando Valley Metro Chapter, San Fernando Valley, Santa Clarita, West Side as well as from SCP & SPPI to the Spark Of Love Toy Collection Center at the Frank Hotchkiss Fire Training Center in Los Angeles.



On December 14, 2012, Chapter President Saul Krochmal, Secretary Bill Jackson, Activity Chairman Jeff Steinbach (with his wife, Kim and daughter, Hailey), Webmaster Dave Lopez and chapter member Eric Nielson delivered all the toys that were donated by our members to the 2012 “Spark Of Love Toy Drive”. We helped TV personality and Channel 7 weatherman Garth Kemp and Santa load up 7 Metro buses full of toys!



On Saturday, May 14th we had our Chapter Charity project at the Lull Special Education center in Encino. Here's a brief recap: The Lull Special Education Center is school for special needs kids with various disabilities. Over the last couple of years our chapter has performed charity projects at the school. In 2007 we raised $2,500.00 for desperately needed school supplies and in 2008, 22 members and chapter supporters helped convert the front of the school into a nature trial wide enough for kids in wheelchairs to ride through.

This year the school needed some help getting ready for an event called "John R. Wooden Day." It was like a miniature Special Olympics for the kids. Eighteen generous guys from our chapter spent 3 hours of their time to do yard clean up and set-up work at the school.

Everything went off without a hitch and afterwards we enjoyed lunch at Chili's. The chapter would like to thank the following members: Saul Krochmal, Michael Chilton, Jose Antonio Arias, Antonio Padilla, Rogelio Diaz, Edgar Escobar, Farshid Enteghami, Vorayuth Nernsuan, Steve Slee, Howard Goldstein, Brian trout, Pete Oster, Ken Miller Bart Wonderly, Darrin King, Lucio Mata, Jorge Garcia and Dave Lopez.

The chapter would like to thank all the guys for their time and labor, especially on a Saturday.

We should all be very proud to be part of the San Fernando Valley Metro Chapter of IPSSA!

Here are a few pictures from the project:


For 2009 San Fernando Valley Metro Chapter teamed up with the Calabasas Chapter on the John R. Wooden Animal Farm Project in Reseda. The John R. Wooden High School is a continuation school with an independently funded on-site “farm habitat” program, teaching responsibility and teamwork to the students as they learn how to care for a variety of domestic farm animals. However, this highly successful program was in danger of closing due to lack of funding. Our chapter and the Calabasas chapter each contributed $1,000.00 towards the retrofitting of the rural farm habitat. Members of the Calabasas Chapter and the San Fernando Valley Metro Chapter joined forces on April 25th and made desperately needed repairs to fencing, roofing, cages and feed storage areas. The duck pond was drained, cleaned out and resurfaced with waterproof cement. We replaced the sand filter and installed a new time clock. The following chapter members made this project possible: Rick Palkovic, Dave Lopez, Ray Leduc, Mike Sidoti, Brian Trout, Ken Mori, Howard Goldstein, John McCurdy, Alfredo Hernandez, Steve Slee, Mike Chilton, Jorge Garcia, Bill Tumblin. Also donating their time: Dave Huber, Adrian Cruz and  Ray Sanchez from SPPI, Danny Cervantez, Gerry Mercado, Victor Martinez and Anna Sanchez from SCP and Russell Burke from Hayward. Spearheaded by Revitalize Reseda, a non-profit corporation, this event was publicized as “Save the Animal Farm Day”. Councilman Dennis Zine was on hand to meet and congratulate the Chapter members for their community service. He awarded Chapter Presidents Dave Lopez and Walt Sweeney, together with the staff for Revitalize Reseda, certificates of appreciation.

(click to see enlarged photos)



On April 26, 2008, a large group of chapter members gave a helping hand to the Lull Special Education Center in Encino. Earlier in the year we donated a check to the school to help get some of their planned projects off the ground. As we were awarding the check to the school, we took a tour of the facility. It was obvious that they had a lot of work to get done, and we realized that we could do a whole lot more than just give them a check. What they needed most of all was manpower! The area in the front of the school was to be converted into a nature trail. The plan was to dig and carve out a path wide enough for wheelchairs to maneuver through the trail. That’s where we came in; the hard part was that a lot of the soil was as hard as concrete and to make matters worse, we were in the middle of a heat wave. The temperature that day was a balmy 98 degrees, but the guys sucked it up and worked their tails off. We all brought our own gardening tools from home and at one point Alfredo Hernandez actually went and got his jack hammer to help break up the soil. Everyone knew what needed to be done and no one wasted any time to getting to work. I don’t think I was ever more proud of our chapter than that day. Of the 24 who signed up to help, 22 showed up, including a few chapter supporters. SCP in Van Nuys donated shovels, rakes and gloves to the school, and treasurer Mile Sidoti brought a couple of ice chests full of drinks;. Here is a list of the great guys that donated their time and labor for the school: Ray Leduc, Mike Sidoti, Alfredo Hernandez, Saul Krochmal, Steve Slee, Darrin King, Francisco Garcia, Jeff Thierry, Pete Oster, John McCurdy, Lucio Mata, David Dewing, Brian Trout, Ken Mori, Rob Gurrola, Bart Wonderly, Jorge Garcia, Ken Miller, Kieth Palkovic and Dave Lopez. A big shout out goes out to the chapter supporters who showed up and worked their tails off on that hot Saturday morning: Danny Cervantez (SCP Van Nuys), Ana Sanchez (SCP Van Nuys), and Russell Burke (Hayward). There is still a lot of work that needs to be done, but I think we gave them a good start. Check out the pictures below:     




2008 cont'd

On February 28, 2008, Chapter board members Dave Lopez, Mike Sidoti, Alfredo Hernandez and Alfredo's sister Patricia Hernandez presented a check for $800.00 to Lull Special Education Center in Encino's principal Leslie Zarate Weiss. This money was raised by chapter members and supporters at the 2007 December Dinner Meeting. The donation will go towards a new program called "Lullaby Farms". This program will include three different areas of the school. The first area will have a nature trail that will use Californian native plants to attract butterflies and hummingbirds in front of the school . The plants will be selected to focus students' sensory stimulation (smells and different textures). The second area will be in the outdoor science classroom and will allow students to move around and work hands-on with the soil and gardening. The third area will be a wheelchair accessible garden. Areas will be built so that students in wheelchairs can plant and care for seedlings. The seedlings will then go to other schools who want to start their own gardens. We hope to continue to contribute to this very special school and all the wonderful kids and teachers.




At our chapter picnics we get a chance to visit and have fun with the chapter members and their families. It's a great way to form a strong bond with our fellow members, and it's neat to see their kids growing up over the years. At our chapter picnic in 2006 we met Kevin Hernandez, the nephew of our attendance chairman Alfredo Hernandez. Kevin has Cerebral Palsy and is in a wheelchair. Alfredo told us about his nephew's strong and courageous sprit, how he always smiles and never complains. Our chapter was touched by his story and we decided to collect donations at our Holiday dinner meeting in December for the Fred S. Lull Special Education Center in Encino. Kevin and about 160 students are enrolled in the Special Education Center, ranging from 3 to 21 years of age. Most of the school's population has multiple disabilities including cerebral palsy, developmental delays, visual and hearing impairments and seizure disorders. Some of their students also have autism. I received a letter from Patricia Eddy, a teacher and fund raiser chair person for the school. In the letter she brought to my attention an exciting new technology called the Magic White Board. This is very large screen that is hung from the wall and connected, via a projector, with a computer. The teacher programs the computer to show interactive, multi-modality lessons on the screen. Because of the size of the screen and the multi-sensory content of the lesson, most of the students are able to interact with and learn from a variety of available programs. Because of the generous donations from our chapter members, Art Grimmitt from Pentair and SPPI in Canoga Park, we raised $2,500 for this very important school. I'm proud to say it was enough to buy a Magic White Board. Chapter board members Dave Lopez, Steve Slee, Alfredo Hernandez and Patricia Hernandez (Kevin's mom) presented the check to Principal Pauline Furman and Patricia Eddy on February 12, 2007.



In 2006 our chapter started work on pool # 2 in Porter Ranch for The Children Are Our Future Foundation, which desperately needed a new pump, valves and a pool heater. The gas line for the pool heater was also badly in need of repair. At our April chapter meeting Joe Colletto from Suntrek Solar suggested installing a solar heater to lower the cost of heating the pool and spa. We had no idea how we would be able to afford to have a solar system installed, until Joe and his crew generously donated a beautiful system and installed it at no charge. Mark Owens from Sta-Rite/Pentair donated a 1.5 hp Max-E-Pro pool pump and a set of Compool valves. When the work was completed everything was running smoothly and the water was a toasty 86° by May! San Fernando Valley Metro chapter would like to thank Joe Colletto for the fantastic solar heating system and exceptional installation by the Suntrek crew, and Mark Owens from Sta-Rite/Pentair for the terrific new pump and valves. Because of the donations from these two great chapter supporters, those kids in Porter Ranch now have nice warm pool to swim in.



In 2005 our chapter helped out a charity foundation called Children Are Our Future. This charity has rental houses in the valley where kids from troubled backgrounds have a good place to stay while they go to school and become young adults. Two of the houses had swimming pools that were in various needs of repair. Pool #1 in Northridge was green with black algae and desperately needed a pump, filter and new hand rails for the ladder in the deep end. Pool #2 in Porter Ranch needed a new pump and a pool heater. We decided to get to work on the Northridge pool this year and then tackle the Porter Ranch pool in 2006. Art Grimmitt from Pentair donated a Whisperflo pump and a FNS filter. SCP pitched in with new hand rails and our chapter picked up the PVC pipe and fittings. Alan Francois form Aqua Clear installed the hand rails and Dave Lopez installed the pump and filter. Dave Perry took care of the black algae. Nice job guys! Check out the pictures below: