Cajon Middle School Students Learn the Value of Giving Back to Their Community

It was a complete surprise to see   Marilu Ortiz’s smiling face walk     through Sophie’s front door, since  it had been at least a decade  since she was an art instructor at  the gallery. She handed me a  small envelope with a huge purple sticker on it and said,  “Open it!” Inside was a   Postal  Money Order for $460 made out  to Sophie’s Gallery.

Miss Ortiz’s art class at Cajon Middle School chose Sophie’s Gallery as a beneficiary for their community service project. Her students were learning about leadership in classes supported by the Ken Blanchard Companies through Blanchard Student Leadership, a program that teaches decision-making skills, developing self-confidence, motivation and good judgment. The whole school participated in raising money during a 3-week period.

 Miss Ortiz’s art class sold small copies of student-generated artwork, working in shifts selling them to their classmates. They not only raised their funds in a short amount of time but also exceeded their goal of $400. Along the way students learned empathy and awareness of the needs of the community. When asked what they learned they said things like “I feel good inside for helping Sophie’s.” and “I didn’t only benefit, others did too.”

Sophie’s Gallery used the funds to purchase beads for our jewelry classes. On behalf of St. Madeleine’s and our artists we sincerely thank Principal Don Hohimer and the students from the Cajon Middle School art class for their hard work and generous gift! We also thank their teacher Marilu Ortiz not only for thinking of us, but for her continued passion for the arts in our community.

SMSC’s Self Advocacy Gives Back

As many are already aware, St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center was established in 1966 by the Religious of the Sacred Heart, who have touched the lives of many in 41 countries.
Recently, St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center had the opportunity to connect to a   group in Kenya – St. Madeleine Sophie Home and Educational Centre. Their focus is similar to ours, as their “program empowers persons with special needs to believe in themselves, develop their gifts, and manage what independence is possible for them within a supportive environment.”
In November of last year, the Center received a letter from
Sr. Becky Loukae, RSCJ — the SMS (Kenya) Center Director — requesting a donation for Tuition Aid for residential students at their Centre. The letter had barely been opened before SMSC’s Self Advocacy Group responded.
As part of their philanthropic efforts, the SMSC’s Self Advocacy Group raises money annually for other non-profit organizations in San Diego County. After a brief discussion, the SMSC Self Advocacy Group voted to raise money that would benefit SMSC’s sister organization in Kenya.
Last month, the Self Advocacy officers presented a check to Sr. Irene Cullen, RSCJ on behalf of the Kenya Centre in the amount of $1,200 to support tuition for four residential students of St. Madeleine Sophie Home and Education Centrein Kenya.

Bunco Madness!!

St Madeleine Sophie’s Auxiliary





May 10, 2014

10:00 AM-2:00 PM

The Elks Lodge #1812

1200 E. Washington Avenue

El Cajon, CA 92020

$25 per person

Proceeds to benefit adults with developmental disabilities

Guests will enjoy a light lunch, door prizes, opportunity drawing/Chinese auction and cash prizes!

(Your tickets for the opportunity drawing and Chinese Auction along with your reservation will be given to you at the door)

Call or email Carole Ryan-Steinauer, Event Chair to make reservations:

Cell 619-504-6675/Home 619-449-5366 or



Give BIG on Tuesday, May 6 to help St. Madeleine’s support over 400 adults with development disabilities!

To give BIG today click here: 

give big







St. Madeleine Sophie’s Center is honored to participate in giveBIG San Diego 2014.

On Tuesday, May 6, we will be partnering with The San Diego Foundation to recognize and support the positive work of 300 + nonprofits in the San Diego community.

GiveBIG is an online networking and giving event where nonprofits have the opportunity to gain exposure while bringing people in the San Diego region together to raise as much money as possible for local nonprofits in a time-sensitive period. For detailed information on giveBIG CLICK HERE.

 Here’s how the event will work:

From midnight – 11:59 p.m. PST on Tuesday, May 6, the public will be able to make donations on our customized giveBIG event webpage:

Donors choose their donation amount, with a minimum gift starting at $25.

There is no limit as to how much a donor may give to a nonprofit, but only the first $1,000 of every gift will be counted towards incentive pool funds.

The San Diego Foundation and other sponsors have committed $200,000 to incentivize giving during this event, so that nonprofits will receive a proportion of this pool based on how much money they raise during the event. For example, if St. Madeleine’s raises 5% of the total amount raised during the event, St. Madeleine’s will receive 5% of the incentive pool.

GiveBIG is a great way to increase the value of your donation. Every dollar raised helps St. Madeleine’s to continue to provide quality, unique day programs and services to over 400 adults with developmental disabilities year round.

 Please support St. Madeleine’s by participating in giveBIG on Tuesday, May 6!


St. Madeleine’s Organic Garden on KPBS TV

Follow the link below to view our students and staff in the garden featured for the KPBS television episode, “A Growing Passion; Growing Dreams and Memories”

Aired: 2/27/2014

“Gardens beautify, they feed, they serve as habitat for animals, and they do more.  Some gardens become places that heal bodies and souls or inspire new beginnings.  Such is the case with the locations we visit in this episode.” -KPBS

St. Madeleine’s portion starts at 17:45…