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Marin Charitable, an all-volunteer organization established in 1961, held a fundraising event at Sweetwater Music Hall on Jan. 10 that raised more than $100,000 for local groups that offer critical support, education and enrichment for Marin youth of middle and high school age who have limited opportunities. Above (left to right) are Jennie Gill, Rose Jennings-Newhouse, Jessica Berry and Tracy Solomon.

What sets Marin Charitable apart from other granting organizations is the vetting process, which includes not only a meticulous perusal of written proposals but site visits to the requesting organizations. Grants committee members have the opportunity to meet staff and discuss their program in depth. A crowd of 250 people danced to music performed live by Wonder Bread 5. One of the grantees, Oakland-based Hip Hop for Change (above, top), taught the guests some hip hop moves. Pictured (above, bottom, left to right) are Sally Buehler, Auctioneer Chad Carvey and Marin Charitable President Liz Harrell. -Photos courtesy of Marin Charitable

Guide Dogs for the Blind prepares highly qualified guide dogs to serve and empower individuals who are blind or visually impaired. All of its services are provided free of charge. Guide Dogs for the Blind receives no government funding. More than 15,000 guide teams have graduated from Guide Dogs for the Blind since it was founded in 1942. Graduation ceremonies are open to the public and take place twice a month. The next graduation dates are Feb. 8 and 22 and March 7 and 21. For additional information, visit For campus tour reservations, call (800) 295-4050. -Photo of Carrie Carlisle and Jolette courtesy of Guide Dogs

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