1950s EMQ CHILDREN REUNITE / DR. ELENA WONG, JANET CHANG AND DALE LEE
Season 5 of Community Storytelling begins with a story that is near and dear to our hearts in Los Gatos. Host Lissa Kreisler learns the story of Eastfield Ming Quong from 3 remarkable former residents who lived at this girls' home in the fifties: Elena Wong, Janet Chang and Dale Lee. They call each other "sisters" as they share their heartfelt memories and life experiences. Ming Quong, which means Radiant Light, was the 3rd home created in 1936 to rescue orphaned children from becoming victims of human trafficking. The campus housed over 400 Chinese, Chinese Americans and Bi-racial children over the years and is now a home for foster youth. Lissa also engages with Development Director, Darren DeMonsi, who began as a volunteer at EMQ 20 years ago and has much history to share about the organization.
DAUGHTERS OF DEMENTIA / SANDY DECKER, GINGER MCDONALD AND MARY ELLEN KASCHUB
Every now and then Lissa Kreisler hosts a show that stirs every emotion in us. Meet 3 fabulous women who bravely shared their stories with us about their husbands' varying stages of dementia. Sandy Decker, Ginger McDonald and Mary Ellen Kaschub, all leaders in our community, created a support group called "Daughters of Dementia" to embrace a lighter look at an extremely tough situation. They feel blessed to have found each other as they all share the pain of becoming caregivers and care managers for their husbands who are no longer the people they married due to this agonizing disease. In this very candid interview, they share their stories, advice for others and hope for a future when dementia will have a cure.
THE VALLEY / EMERSON MORLEY
Host Lissa Kreisler chats with a very impressive LGHS Senior, Emerson Morley. Emerson's story will hit close to home for many who struggle in school like she did. After years of reflection about why students with mental health disorders who are good people get pushed aside for straight A students, Emerson decided to shine a light on this subject and create, direct and act in a short film. During the pandemic, her home was turned into a movie set with a motivated team of actors and crew who created "The Valley." This successful short film was premiered and featured in film festivals, but sorry folks - it is now under wraps as a feature movie may be in the works. Stay tuned for more from Emerson as she embarks on her journey to Chapman in the fall.
CANCER CAREPOINT / JAN WILLOUGHBY
Meet volunteer extraordinaire, Jan Willoughby, who shares her story with host Lissa Kreisler. Jan, a former english teacher at LGHS, attributes looking and feeling her best to daily Yoga classes and walking her dog. Originally Jan served on the American Cancer Society Board after many of her family members were diagnosed with cancer. When the news hit too close to home that her daughter was diagnosed with breast cancer, Jan quickly realized that she couldn't find the services they needed. Jan and her friend, Gay Crawford, joined forces and created the non-profit Cancer Carepoint that would provide services for cancer patients at no charge. Now celebrating 10 years, they will keep the tradition of hosting their annual garden party fundraiser in August.
POE SCHOLARSHIPS - COLLEGE DREAMS COMING TRUE / ROSEMARY ROSSI AND JANE OGLE
Host Lissa Kreisler learns about an amazing organization thats near and dear to the hearts of Rosemary Rossi, former school teacher and 16 years on the LGSUHSD school board, and Jane Ogle, healthcare professional. Pursuit of Excellence Scholarships, POE, was established in recognition of the inequities for first generation, low income students' ability to attend college and pursue an education. Students who are accepted into the program receive a scholarship which covers the cost of college. In addition, students work with a mentor all 4 years, an invaluable resource that helps them navigate college to reach graduation, which includes encouraging students to join clubs, write resumes and get jobs. Over the years POE volunteers marvel at the eagerness of students want to attend college, graduate and become contributing members of society which is key to POE's success rate.