Skip to main content

The Sisterhood of Resilience: From Separation to Support

Mary and Ruby Quote Banner

Losing their parents to drug and alcohol addiction motivated sisters Mary and Ruby to build healthy and fulfilling lives to help themselves and others.   

For Mary, the path to healing began with strengthening her own body and mind. Her father had been a track and field runner, but she didn’t see him in that light, as a strong athlete, because his addiction had stripped that away. It inspired her to become a runner herself, breaking track and field records in middle school as she discovered the power of her own physical strength.  

“I saw my parents let...

Read more

Anjru's Story - In His Own Words

I went into foster care partly because of physical and emotional abuse, but mostly, because of poverty. My dad was in and out of jail. My mother was a single mother raising me and my three sisters. We lived in the car, slept on couches, and on people’s floors for a long time, until the day we entered foster care. Whenever something bad happened to my family, my parents would blame me. I felt that I was a burden, and I was always anxious. But I can’t say that I was a victim of my...

Read more
sobrato philanthropies banner

Sobrato Philanthropies Pledges $500,000 in support of Pivotal's programs over the next 2 years

We are honored to be awarded a $500,000, multi-year grant from Sobrato Philanthropies to support our programs. One of Pivotal’s most steadfast supporters, Sobrato has given over $2.5 million in funding since Pivotal’s founding. Sobrato has provided funding for our post-secondary programs, emergency assistance fund, and general operations to help us continue to grow our work. 

“We support Pivotal because they see foster youth as whole humans and create conditions that...

Read more
KLA Tencor Announcement Banner

KLA Foundation Pledges $300,000 over 3 Years to Support Pivotal's High School Coaching Program

We are thrilled to announce that the KLA Foundation has pledged $300,000 over the next three years to fund Pivotal’s High School Coaching program! In California, only 46% of young people in foster care graduate from high school, and nationally, just 4% earn a bachelor’s degree. We work to make an impact on these alarming numbers through our High School Coaching Program, where, on average, 74% of participants earn high school diplomas and 77% go on to post-secondary education. The...

Read more
Candice Chung Introduction Banner v2

Welcoming Candice Chung - Chief Financial and Operating Officer

In late April, Pivotal welcomed our new Chief Financial & Operating Officer, Candice Chung. For nearly two decades, Candice has worked in the non-profit sector, committed to improving outcomes through access to education.  

Most recently, Candice served as CFO of AI4ALL, a national nonprofit that is transforming the pipeline of artificial intelligence practitioners and creating a more inclusive, human-centered discipline. During her time at AI4ALL, Candice developed financial...

Read more
Pattie Cortese Introduction Banner

Welcoming Pattie Cortese - Board Member

More great news for the Pivotal team! Pattie Cortese is joining our Board of Directors. Pattie has lived in the Bay Area since 1969. She began her career with Catholic Charities in their Vocational Learning and Treatment Center, working with chronically mentally ill adults to gain skills and employment. Pattie has been active in youth mentoring programs since 1994 and is a founding member of the South Bay Mentoring Coalition, a group of nonprofit organizations working together to promote...

Read more
Denisse Banner

Onward and Upward: For Denisse, Graduation is just the Beginning

Denisse loved school all her life. It was a sanctuary, a place to escape from the violence and anger she often faced at home. She loved school and was always eager to learn.

“School was my home where I had friends, and there weren’t any bad things. But one day, I got home just five mins late and he beat me with a belt and cables. It hurt to walk. I reported him through my school who then reported him to the police.”

Her dad was arrested but was soon out on bail and Denisse...

Read more
EPEC Conversations Banner V2 with date

An EPEC Conversation with Lupe Diaz

In celebration of National Foster Care Month, join us for a live recording of Delrisha White’s podcast EPEC (Everyday People, Extraordinary Circumstances) Conversations, hosted in partnership with Harmonic.

Delrisha, a dynamic social impact leader and a former foster youth, will be talking to Pivotal board member and alumna, Lupe Diaz about her extraordinary story of resilience.

If you'd like to attend the live taping of the podcast, register below. 

Register for EPEC Live

Read more

Full Circle - Molly's Story


When Molly was growing up, her mom had serious mental health issues and struggled to take care of herself, much less her children. At 15, Molly was removed from her mom’s care and the court tracked down her father with the hopes that she could stay with him. He was a biker, affiliated with the Hell’s Angels, and was in rehab battling substance abuse issues. When they met at a restaurant, Molly hadn’t seen her dad in five years. He asked if she had any money. She paid for...

Read more

Comfort in Art - Sara's Story

Sara Art

Sara has always found comfort in art. When she was younger, when she didn’t know how to express herself, drawing and painting helped her find her voice. Creating helped her find structure and organize her thoughts when she felt her life was overwhelming. By putting her feelings and experiences into something tangible, Sara found a way to express herself and face her trauma. She would show her art to her Pivotal coach, and to her social workers, to help them understand her and her...

Read more

Make the Most of Yourself - Monica's Story


Growing up, Monica and her brother were severely abused physically, emotionally, and psychologically by their mother's partner. Monica found solace in books – she became a voracious reader, finding escape and peace between the pages. But fiction couldn’t protect her from the realities of her life. When she was 11 years old, after a traumatic beating that left her brother black and blue over half his body, Monica knew she had to seek help. She and her brother ran away, Child...

Read more