NCF is dedicated to raising funds to support women’s health organizations. For our potential applicants, the grant process begins with reviewing the grant guidelines and completing an application. Grants support research and health institutions, outreach programs and women’s health advocacy groups focused on the five primary women’s health threats; heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, autoimmune diseases and mental health issues.
During the application process, each nonprofit organization must supply the National Cheers Foundation with supporting documents for its needs, including financial statements, proof of nonprofit status, the reason for the request and at least two bids if capital items are requested. Once the grant submissions are complete, the National Cheers Foundation Grants Committee conducts site visits with applicants that pass our initial screening process. As we interview the potential beneficiaries, we learn about their missions, the scope of their work and the lives they touch.
National Cheers Foundation Annual Grants Time Line



CHEERS Grant Interview

CHEERS Grant Interview

National CHEERS Foundation Board Member, Kate Woods, at the Family Health Center grant interview.

Comfort Cubs distribution event at Sharp Hospital.

All the Comfort Cubs!

Vista Hill Grant Interview


Vista Hill Foundation
The ParentCare program serves over 200 parenting women each year between two sites (San Diego and La Mesa). ParentCare services are designed to holistically support chemically dependent women and their families who are at high risk for child abuse, domestic violence and homelessness.  The majority of the women in treatment also have a dual psychiatric diagnosis and host of physical health related issues.

Many of these women have come to ParentCare from stressful, unsafe, or abusive homes. The trauma has had significant impact on their lives, and being able to provide a tranquil space for them is something healing to their physical and emotional selves.

The National Cheers Foundation is pleased to support the holistic mental health needs of the women in the ParentCare Recovery program with wrap around services that are so critical in enhancing the quality of life for these women. In tandem a zen garden shall be created along with wellness programs to greatly improve their mental health and physical heath through the practice of yoga and mindfulness meditation there. This project improves the overall well-being of each participant who completes the program. The yoga, mindfulness, and stress management education that these funds support are important skills that the women need to stay substance free. When these women learn to handle stress, trauma, and other negative forces in healthy ways, they are able to be better parents and more responsible community members. Participating in all these classes in the new zen garden being created will help women learn to relieve stress in healthy ways.

The American Addiction Centers states “yoga is increasingly being used in substance abuse treatment programs and throughout recovery to help prevent relapse, reduce withdrawal symptoms and drug cravings, and provide a healthy outlet to cope with potential triggers and daily life stressors. When someone abuses drugs or alcohol regularly, pathways in the brain are altered, and the pathways related to feeling pleasure, regulating emotions, making sound decisions, controlling impulses may be negatively affected. After a period of time without the influence of drugs or alcohol, brain chemistry and circuitry can heal and rebuild itself. Yoga may be able to help with this as well” At Vista Hill, staff and clients can personally attest to this, which is why they incorporate yoga and mindfulness into treatment plans.

Vista Hill, established in 1957, currently operates 25 programs throughout San Diego county and serves over 27,000 babies, toddlers, school age children and teenagers.

Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health
Funds provided by the National Cheers Foundation grant are being used to fund Dr. Rebecca Shatsky’s research that uses a drug called cirmtuzumab to target cancer stem cells that cause both cancer relapse and progression of disease in breast cancer. Dr. Shatsky is currently conducting a clinical trial that involves taking patient tumor samples and testing them for ROR-1 expression both before and after treatment with cirmtuzumab. The funds provided will go directly to supporting the laboratory based research of this treatment, as well as the costs to provide care for the patient with metastatic breast cancer enrolled in the clinical trial.
Center for Community Solutions
National Cheers Foundation is pleased to provide funding to furnish Center for Community Solution’s Growth Through Healing Room at their Hidden Valley House (HVH) emergency center.

When women, children and families arrive at the shelter, they often arrive with only the clothes on their back, and traumatized by the violence and instability they faced in their homes because of domestic abuse and violence. As soon as they get to HVH, the violence in their lives end and we begin to help break the cycle of abuse in their lives.

Hidden Valley House (HVH) provides a safe place for families to heal, grow and rebuild their lives. At this shelter, a comprehensive array of services is available for the women and their children in a warm, welcoming environment that is conductive to healing.

The Growth Through Healing Room is a safe space dedicated to support the mental, emotional and developmental wellbeing of our families – a space where Moms and their children can reconnect, and offer a space for healing.

When CHAT (child Abuse Therapy) advocates visit with the children at the shelter, the Growth Through Healing Room can also be utilized for art therapy, play therapy, and counseling, as well as provide a more relaxed environment to meet with the family unit.

The National Cheers Foundation funding is providing an environment that is conductive to the clients’ growth towards rebuilding the family unit, self-sufficiency, stability, and independence. Altogether, this supports a wholesome and holistic approach for the healing of the women, children and families who have experienced domestic abuse and violence and are experiencing mental health issues because of the trauma.

Doris A. Howell Foundation
The Howell Foundation serves to make a lasting impact on the overall wellbeing of women by “Keeping the Women We Love Healthy.”  The Foundation focuses on three key areas: Research Scholarships, Educational Events and Community Engagement. The Howell Foundation is dedicated to making a long-term, positive impact on women’s health. Their outreach is to all of San Diego County. Nursing Scholarships have been awarded to all four of the major universities in San Diego.

There is a severe shortage of qualified nurses throughout the United States and San Diego is no different. Furthermore, there is also a shortage of nurses who hold a Ph.D. and fill important leadership positions as well as taking on teaching responsibilities. Many of the graduate nurses the Howell Foundation supported in the past have remained in San Diego, each of them improving health care in their chosen position.

This years funds granted to the Howell Foundation by the National Cheers Foundation will enable them to continue to support graduate nursing students in their women’s health research. Each scholarship awarded expands the understanding of women’s health and prepares another potential researcher for a career in women’s health research.

The Comfort Cub Program, Inc.Comfort Cub Logo
Comfort Cub has become a vital part of every San Diego hospital’s bereavement program.  The size and weight of the Comfort Cubs are designed to mimic the feeling of getting a hug! The physiological effects of releasing the “happy hormones” help those who have lost a baby or child manage their grief.  Grieving mothers experience perinatal bereavement symptoms including depression, aching arms and stress-induced cardiomyopathy dubbed the “broken heart syndrome.” 

Over the years Comfort Cub has supplied all San Diego Hospitals with cubs.  We also have responded to different tragedies across our nation. Our cubs have been warmly received by the parents and teachers at Sandy Hook, the families from the school shooting at Ompqua Community College, the victims families from Route 91 shooting in Vegas, the floods in Houston and the fires in Northern California. 

Sadly, we do not know when the next tragedy will occur but because of the generous grant from the National Cheers Foundation we are ready to get Comfort Cubs in the arms of those affected. We plan to have a supply of “emergency” bears ready to be deployed to those that are suffering. A grant from Cheers makes this possible.

South Bay Community Services (SBCS)
The funding from this years National Cheers Foundation award will support the expansion of the Mi Escuelita Preschools into a fourth classroom.  Currently, the preschool operates out of three classrooms with a capacity to serve 72 students each year, yet sadly has a wait list which has grown to exceed 30 children at any one time. The addition of another classroom will allowthe program to serve an additional 24 students who have experienced trauma each year.

Mi Escuelita is a free, full day, therapeutic preschool for children aged 3 to 5 who have been traumatized by family violence. The Program provides therapeutic, developmental, and educational activities, as well as parent support services in a safe, healthy environment, including assessments, counseling, Healthy Development Services, Community Services for Families, and children’s mental health services.

This innovative program, which is the only one of its kind in Southern California, combines early childhood education with therapist-led counseling and supportive parenting activities. Through Mi Escuelita, and the support of the National Cheers Foundation, SBCS is able to assist their most vulnerable children to develop physically, emotionally and socially in supportive home and school environments, increasing their chances of long-term healthy development free from violence and abuse.

Center for Community Solutions
The National Cheers Foundation is thrilled to provide funding for the Long Term Emergency Shelter Residence Furnishings Project. With these funds, adult female survivors on intimate partner violence, sexual assault or stalking will gain access to comfortable and supportive environments while they complete their recovery process following traumatic experiences at the Hidden Valley House emergency shelter. A portion of these funds will be used to furnish two of the newly remolded apartment units at Next Step North long-term emergency shelter.
Center for Women’s Leadership in the Conscious Leadership Academy at the University of San Diego
Grow Great Girls (GGG) Program is a mother–daughter  leadership program that is designed to 1) Build the leadership capacity of girls and women through strengthening their sense of who they are and giving them the skills to effectively navigate the complex personal and social challenges they face, and 2) deepening the connection between mothers and daughters. The funding provided by the National Cheers Foundation is being used for a Grow Great Girls series that targets daughters who are struggling with shame and a compromised sense of self, and the mothers who are trying to support them through the process.
National Veterans Transition Services, Inc. aka REBOOTNational Veterans Transition Services, Inc. aka REBOOT Logo
The REBOOT program, funded by the National Cheers Foundation, is designed to facilitate the successful reintegration of women completing their military careers through a bold approach for military-to-civilian transition that combines cognitive behavioral education with real-world career transitioning.
Doris A. Howell FoundationThe Howell Foundation Logo
The Howell Foundation launched an evening series program as part of their health outreach. The purpose is to expand the outreach beyond those who attend the luncheon series. The National Cheers Foundation is proud to support an evening lecture with an impressive panel of cancer experts discussing the controversial subject of mammograms and the California-based clinical trial designed to address the question of the effective use of mammography, know as the WISOM Study.
The Comfort Cub Program, Inc.Comfort Club Logo
Comfort Cub has become a vital part of every San Diego hospital’s bereavement program. The size and weight of the Comfort Cubs are designed to mimic the feeling of getting a hug! The physiological effects of releasing the “happy hormones” help those who have lost a baby or child manage their grief. Grieving mothers experience perinatal bereavement symptoms including depression, aching arms and stress-induced cardiomyopathy dubbed the “broken heart syndrome.” The National Cheers Foundation is proud to support Comfort Cub’s Heal a Heart Day at Sharp Hospital where representatives from all San Diego Hospitals receive their bears to have on hand for their families experiencing a loss. Comfort Cubs are now in every hospital in San Diego, including Camp Pendleton, the Naval Hospital, SD Police Department and Forensic Health Services.
South Bay Community Services (SBCS)
Generous funding from the National Cheers Foundation  supports enrollment of low-income young women high school students in grades 11 and 12 into the Academic Advocates Program, which provides individualized support to first generation college students.  Academic Advocates participate in the schools’ regular advisory classes and also provide individual advisement to address students’ personal, academic, and career-related issues including SATs, A-G courses, applying on time, understanding financial aid and scholarships, etc. Advocates meet one-on-one with students to develop a Plan For Success, mentoring the youth, connecting with their families regularly, and collaborating with school staff, in order to lower individual students’ barriers to success while helping students connect with peers. The Plan For Success will provide a road map that each student can follow, leading to college and career success. Once the student enters college, the Academic Advocate continues to support her learning, and overall academic and career goals.

Soaring Spirits International Widowed people created Soaring Spirits because we discovered that connecting with other widowed people made the challenges of surviving a spouse or partner a little easier to manage. There is a widowed community here at Soaring Spirits that offers widowed men and women understanding, friendship, inspiration, and encouragement as they learn to live without the person with whom they intended to spend the rest of their lives. Soaring Spirits communities, both online and in-person, are diverse, inclusive, secular, and positive. We share resources, ideas, energy, and most importantly, hope. We believe that hope matters.
MI ESUCELITA & SOUTH BAY COMMUNITY SERVICES South Bay Community Services’ Mi Escuelita Therapeutic Preschool is the only one of its kind in Southern California designed especially for children affected by domestic violence and abuse to help break the cycle of violence, help children heal and begin the right path for school. Mi Escuelita is funded in part by First 5 San Diego, private donations, student sponsorships and SBCS. SBCS is a community-based nonprofit touching the lives of more than 50,000 each year in San Diego County. Our programs and services respond to the needs of our community. We provide the support and tools needed so challenges can be overcome and lives can be redirected with hope, purpose and sustainable outcomes.
 Salk Institute for Biological Studies salk_logo CHEERS funds support groundbreaking research affecting women’s health, and by partnering with the Salk Women & Science Program is supporting a female scientist, Amy Rommel, PhD. Dr. Rommel is a wife, mother, mentor, adventurer, ocean lover and is changing the game on how we think about treating cancer. As a researcher in the laboratory of Dr. Inder Verma at the Salk Institute, Amy is focusing her efforts on one of the most lethal forms of cancer, Glioblastoma. Her research into how the “stem-cell-like” tumor overcomes therapeutic attacks by adapting, mutating, migrating and invading into other tissues has uncovered a mechanism by which the tumor has potentially cured itself, albeit currently in a small number of tumor cells, by adapting and transforming into a vascular (blood vessel) cell, a process known as transdifferentiation. If cancer is essentially a mass of stem cells growing out of control, then perhaps just as in a developing embryo, the cancer simply seeks programming to tell the cells what to do. This is what Dr. Rommel’s research aims to accomplish. Instead of simply trying to create a drug to kill the cancer, Dr. Rommel’s current work proposes a novel strategy to reprogram the stem-like, tumor cells back to “normal” non-tumor initiating cells. It is her hope that this treatment will not be toxic to the patient, have fewer side effects and most importantly, put an end to tumor adaptation, resistance and evasion of treatment.
South Bay Community Services South Bay Community Services serves San Diego County’s Southern Region that is situated on the Mexican border. The region is largely urban and includes Chula Vista, National City, Imperial Beach, and San Ysidro and supports a diverse population that is greatly affected by immigration, characterized by transience, low socioeconomic expectancy, high crime rates, and substance abuse, making it difficult for them to find employment, affordable housing, physical and mental health care, and access community resources and services.  CHEERS will be matching funds for the LEAP Program that will support stipend work-experience for young women overcoming their own mental and behavioral health issues, striving to earn a career in the health care field.
Family Health Centers The National CHEERS Foundation is please to once again partner with Family Health Centers, whose mission has been to provide affordable, high-quality health care and support services to all people, with a special commitment to the uninsured, low-income and medically underserved.  This year’s grant for The El Cajon Family Health Clinic in East County will fund two Doppler Heart Rate Moniters and one powered barrier free exam table.
Doris A. Howell Foundation The mission of the Doris A. Howell Foundation for Women’s Health Research is to fund undergraduate scientists in their relevant research and to educate women to be catalysts for better family health. The National CHEERS Foundation is proud to partner with the Doris Howell Foundation and is supporting their scholarship program with a matching grant for a nursing scholarship.
Family Health Centers CHEERS funds will support the purchase of a colposcope for the full-scope cervical cancer screening program for the women in the Diamond Neighborhoods of Family Health Center in Southeast San Diego.
4Bone Health CHEERS funds will be used for the continuation and expansion of the teen-to-teen bone health program created by High Tech High students, who initiated the challenge of “Bone Break Day” to increase awareness of the short-term and long-term consequences of bone health. The goal is to create a “turn key” resource for any school or group to utilize their own Bone Break Day, focusing on bone health.
 Salk Institute for Biological Studies salk_logo CHEERS funds will be used to support ground-breaking research that directly impacts women’s health, in such areas as heart disease, brain disease, diabetes, and cancer.  Amid growing signs that gender bias has affected research outcomes and damaged women’s health, there’s a new push to make science more relevant to them.  We are delighted to partner with The Salk Institute in this endeavor.
 Sharp Healthcare Foundation / Mary Birch Hospital Screen Shot 2013-07-31 at 11.55.44 AM CHEERS funds will be used for improvements in the Sharp Mary Birch Neonatal Intensive Care Unit’s private Lactation Lounge for mothers of pre-mature newborns receiving care in the NICU.  The Lactation Lounge offers a private respite for these mothers who seek to find serenity in a stressful time of their lives to pump and provide breast milk to their babies.
Family Health Centers  The National CHEERS Foundation is thrilled to provide Medical Equipment for two Exam rooms at the new Diamond Neighborhoods Family Health Center (currently nearing completion at 47th & Market in southeast San Diego).
Scripps Research Institute The National Cheers Foundation is excited to be supporting  breast cancer research in the lab of Dr. Brunie Feldin, Associate Professor at TSRI.
Cal State University San Marcos Foundation The National CHEERS Foundation funds a Health Video program facilitating the Community’s mission: To empower students, members of the university and the community to take action through the production, study and use of socially responsible, culturally sensitive media that addresses the diversity of the region and the nation. The mission of (PHFE/4BoneHealth is to move people toward optimal bone health through awareness and education!
Postpartum Health Alliance Funds to support 2014 “warmline” project, the only telephone resource in San Diego where mothers and family members can obtain support and referrals and speak to someone who has been there. The request covers the operation costs of the telephone and telecommunication fees and supports the stipend of administrative assistant.
The National Cheers Foundation is proud to support the First Annual Betty Barwise Page McLean Award Recipient:chula In 2012, Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center opened the new Douglas and Nancy Barnhart Cancer Center – this cancer center combines advanced technology with critical features that provide comfort and healing. With a grant from the National Cheers Foundation, our goal to support the clinical heath care and social support needs of women diagnosed with cancer in the low-income, uninsured communities of South County can be greatly enhanced through our Patient Navigator Program. This program provides necessity bags, wigs, and scarves, lymphedema supplies and transportation assistance. In the past, we had only been able to offer this service to breat cancer patients – the support of the National Cheers Foundation will help expand this service to women dealing with cancer. Women diagnosed with cancer experience such an emotional journey from the time of diagnosis to deciding on surgery and making the transition from patient to survivor. For those less fortunate, support from the community is vitally important.