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Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Magnolia Jazz Band Supports Bellarmine's Soup Kitchen Dinner Fundraiser

The Mission of Family Supportive Housing Inc. is to provide shelter and supportive services to homeless families with children in Santa Clara County. The second part of their mission is to empower them to move from homelessness back to self sufficiency in our community.

Each year Bellarmine College Preparatory School hosts a "Soup Kitchen Dinner" fundraiser to support Family Supportive Housing Inc. How do they do this? There were 32 sponsors, 16 restaurants that provided soup, appetizers from 4 different restaurants, salads and bread from 3 restaurants and dessert and coffee. Attendees purchased a $125 ticket to attend the event, the proceeds of which are a donation, and a raffle and silent and live auctions all took place after dinner to raise even more funds.

I learned about the Soup Kitchen Dinner from Robbie Schlosser of the Magnolia Jazz Band. In fact I was invited as his guest as the trio has donated their services to the fundraiser ever since it began 23 years ago. If you would like to hear samples of their music you can Click Here.

It was a fun, fairly informal dinner where you can go up and get in line as many times as you want, to try as many soups as you want, from many popular restaurants in the South Bay.

Hundreds of guests attended the dinner. It was heartwarming to see so many people come out and support their local community this way.

I enjoyed the tomato basil soup from La Pastaia.

Yum! I ate the whole bowl.

Then I tried the paella from Parsley Rosemary Sage and Thyme. The pan was HUGE! It was at least 3 feet in diameter, maybe even more!

I'd never had paella before because of my seafood allergies but this paella was seafood free.

Robbie had the gumbo when the trio took a break.

Then it was back to work entertaining the crowd with their music. One of the things I love most about the Magnolia Jazz Band is that their music is perfect for a room of hundreds to a small and intimate gathering. It creates a wonderful party atmosphere without ever being too loud to converse. I don't know about all of you but I hate when I come home from a party that was too loud and have no voice left the next day because I had to strain my vocal cords to be heard the night before.

The trio is so personable. Here a fan came by to compliment and briefly chat with the band.

Radio and Wedding DJ Rich Amooi was there for a bit and shot this video of Robbie and the trio.

There were baskets guests could win by purchasing a raffle ticket. I didn't get a good photo of the silent auction items because there was always too many people in front of the displays. Which was great! I think every item met its minimum bid.

The live auction was particularly fun, and funny, when one lady accidently bid against her own last bid, raising the price of her vacation package by an extra $250. She was a great sport though and probably laughed at herself even harder then the rest of the crowd. All of the money went to help Family Supportive Housing Inc.

If you would like to understand more about the families who end up at the shelter and how it works the following information is from their Website:

Quick Facts:

In Santa Clara County, an estimated 20,000 people experience homelessness each year. Of these people, at least 25 percent are under the age of 18.

Families with children represent the fastest growing segment of the homeless population, constituting approximately 40% of people who become homeless.

Over 70 percent of the residents at the Shelter are children and most are under the age of ten.

One-fourth of all homeless people work, but their wages are too low for them to afford permanent housing.

Family Supportive Housing is the only shelter in Santa Clara County that exclusively services families – intact families and single parents with children.

If you want to help the families in need at the community shelter I found the following "Wish List" on their website:

Shelter Wish List

Bed Linens:

Comforters and blankets

Pillows (standard)


Full and twin sheet sets

2x3 throw rugs to place next to the beds

Kitchen Needs:

Fresh Vegetables

Lunch meats

Fresh fruits

Bread products

Herbs and Spices

Family Needs:

children's clothing (for 9-12 year olds)

Diapers!!! Size 4, 5 and 6


Shelter Needs:

6ft folding tables

mops and brooms

1 inch soft binders and dockets

Donations are accepted Monday through Friday between 10:00 AM-4:00 PM.
Family Supportive Housing, Inc.
1590 Las Plumas Avenue
San Jose, CA 95133-1667
(408) 926-8885
(408) 254-2056 FAX

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