A New Year and an Old Car

Photo by Vasilios Muselimis on Unsplash

With the first new day of the year comes a sense of new possibility. We can cast off old habits, old dynamics in favor of new ones just because the calendar change permits us. Back in 1991, singer George Michael shook his head at people resetting their lives by the change of a calendar in the song “Waiting for the Day,” in the line,

Now everybody’s talking about this new decade
like you say the magic number
then just say goodbye to the stupid mistakes you made

Personally, I like the simplicity of the ‘New Year, New Me’ approach. It grants us the power to start fresh with a sense of purpose. We hope we have learned from our mistakes, but more importantly, we continue to survive and thrive despite our missteps.

Here we are in January of 2022. Some folks have received new cars for Christmas, or pre-owned and lightly used cars, anyways. And while that seems a pretty expensive present, I can’t argue against it. It’s a beautiful idea. I just wonder: did you trade in that old car yet?

The amount of value that most people get for car trade-ins rarely helps the sale. You could donate the old car itself to a charitable organization like Cars 2nd Chance and then claim it off your taxes. It could be rescued by top mechanics, loved, and allowed to live on to support charities of Rotary Clubs across the nation. So before you trade a used car in for pennies on the dollar, consider donating it to Cars 2nd Chance!

Thanks for reading… we hope we’ve inspired someone out there to donate! If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Having a second look at your garage could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle and help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a car that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not run. We appreciate your love and support!

Our Favorite Car Donation Story of 2021

It’s hard to believe we’re at the end of 2021 already! Unlike 2020, which seemed to never end, this year has gone by in a flash. We stayed busy and managed to make an impact on a few families this year. We’re grateful that we could help out and grateful for the support we got from our partners and friends in making that happen.

We want to take a moment to reflect on some of our favorite car contributions; that people just like YOU helped us make a reality this year! 

One story worth mentioning from this past year was that we received a donation of a travel trailer. We ended up refusing the donation, as the trailer looked to be in rough shape, and it would not have been in the Rotary’s best interest to send it to the auction. However, many months later, someone contacted us looking for a travel trailer; for a homeless man. We managed to connect them with the travel trailer owner, who, amazingly enough, still had the trailer! Long story short and many roadblocks later: the homeless man is no longer homeless.

But our favorite story by far of 2021 was this 1974 Datsun 710 Wagon in the picture above! It was donated by the Rotary Club of Moraga Rotarian Deb Roessler. Deb and her husband, Louis, were the original owners of this beautiful, bright orange 710 wagon.  

Going through the vehicle’s documents with them, we realized that they purchased the vehicle at Oakland Datsun Volvo in 1974 while Dave (my husband) had been working there. Looking into the vehicle further, Dave realized that he had actually installed the aftermarket air conditioning on it!

Talk about a coincidence! After 46 years, what are the chances of an orange Datsun still being on the road and Dave meeting it again!

We advertised it on Facebook marketplace and had close to fifty messages asking about it. Everyone wanted this vehicle! A call from one young man touched us to the core. His father actually had owned the same make and model back in the 1970s. Dad was going through chemotherapy, and the son wanted to surprise his dad with the vehicle. So that is what we did! Here are the son and dad standing to the left of Dave

Thanks for reading… we hope we’ve inspired someone out there to donate! If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Having a second look at your garage could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle and help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a car that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not run. We appreciate your love and support!

Partner Highlight — Moraga Rotary Club

This month, we’re highlighting the work of another fine partner for Cars 2nd Chance: the Rotary Club of Moraga. They’ve been proudly serving the Moraga community and the world since 1967, and together, we’re doing some real good.

The Moraga Rotary Club helps our organization connect with car donors in their community, through the various groups they interconnect with. In addition, their membership keeps their eyes open for recipients in need of a Cars 2nd Chance hand in their area and nominates families for aid. 

Among some of the good works that the Moraga Rotary Club has done in years past includes various disaster relief projects, the opening of kids parks, as well as providing Christmas cheer for kids in the Juvenile Detention system. Their membership works hard to coordinate good efforts with deserving people.

Their president, Brian J, South, holds meetings every Tuesday at noon, in person at La Finestra Ristorante and also on Zoom. The work they do for Moraga is a great reason to contribute. If you’re looking for a reason to join Rotary and volunteer besides the above-mentioned good deeds, Rotary Club of Moraga has 20 more for you.

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Having a second look at your garage could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle and help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a car that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not run. We appreciate your love and support!

Partner Highlight — Mt. Diablo Amateur Radio Club

Image by Megan Krause from Pixabay

Do we have any ham radio operators out there? We are very excited to present to you one of our new partners, MT Diablo Amateur Radio Club!

Mt Diablo Amateur is one of the largest amateur radio clubs in California! Since the start of their journey (January 9, 1947!), their purpose has been to awaken the innovative and creative spirit that is hiding in the amateur radio community through education, service, and warm fellowship that makes the process fun!

We’re thankful to the MT Diablo Amateur RADIO Club for the work that they are doing, and we are excited for all of our future projects together! The ham radio community has the reach to find people in need all over North America, people that Cars 2nd Chance can help, or people with an old vehicle to spare that can help others!

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Having a second look at your garage could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle and help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a car that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not run. We appreciate your love and support!

Behind The Scenes: How Do We Choose The Recipients Of Car Donations?

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Cars 2nd Chance’s mission has always been to help as many people as possible experience the beauty of life without being constrained by limits such as poverty and disease. However, we can’t do it alone, which is why we have partnered with so many Rotary clubs, trusts, and charitable organizations across the country!

Once you make a car donation, you’ll have the chance to select a partner from our partners’ list and support them and their community’s needs! The great thing about our partner’s list is that you cannot make the wrong choice– every organization that we partner with puts your donation in the hands of someone worthy of your contribution.

Each and every one of our partners is dedicated to a cause and fights every day to ensure funding and support for it. Food shelters, Cancer research, non-profit, you name it, we probably have a partner for it! In turn, our partners will seek out worthy recipients from their local pool and choose someone whose situation can be improved with your donation.

The work and the impact we want to do is gigantic. Solving global problems is not about finding a singular solution, but solving the minor issues of thousands of local communities. We hope that you, too, can join us on this quest!

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Having a second look at your garage could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle and help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a car that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not run. We appreciate your love and support!

Partner Highlight — San Pablo Rotary club

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash


Things are just getting better and better at Car 2nd Chance! Today, we’d like to highlight a great partner of ours: the
San Pablo Rotary Club!

 

San Pablo Rotary’s mission is to change the world by supporting worthy causes in the region of San Pablo (and beyond). They are an open community of 21 heroes who engage in large fundraisers to help people and movements that matter. They are also great videographers! Check out their “About Us” video here.

 

We’re incredibly grateful to have a helping partner like the San Pablo Rotary. Working together, we get to help each other contribute to ideas and causes that positively impact people! 

 

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Spring Cleaning and clearing out the clutter could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle and help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a car that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not run. We appreciate your love and support!

5 Things You May Not Know About Car Donations

Car donations are AWESOME for obvious reasons. However, there are some lesser-known benefits to this kind of charity that are often left overlooked! This article will focus on the lesser-known ones and show you how beneficial for the world, car donations are!

 

  1. You are changing the world.
  • 100% Of your vehicle donations go to projects that matter all over the globe. You can even pick which projects you want to support by selecting a partner of ours after you donate! 
  • These projects involve schools, shelters for the homeless, food for the poor, and much more!

 

  • Even small donations can enact change! 
  • With car donations, you don’t have to go crazy and try to donate a ridiculous sum. We accept vehicles of all types, running or not! Every single donation makes a difference! 

 

  1. You’re doing yourself a favor.
  • Did you know that the people who give are, in the end, far happier and healthier than the people who don’t? Science data proves that giving increases our sense of well-being. Instead of indulging in complex productivity systems, giving things away is a far simpler self-help tool! 🙂 

 

  1. You are joining a global community.
  • Vehicle donations are getting extremely popular, and there are a TON of communities forming. If you haven’t found your tribe yet, car donations are fantastic opportunities to find peers like you!
  • Cars 2nd Chance is a program that Rotarians started in Concord, California. We know that through good deeds, we are helping others in our local and global communities.

 

  • You have a choice.
  • We are not looking for people to donate their Lambos (although we are open to that!). We are looking for people with enthusiasm and who want to make an impact. It is the desire, not the deed, that we reward.

 

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Spring Cleaning and clearing out the clutter could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle and help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a car that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that does not run. We appreciate your love and support!

Partner Highlight — Project Healing Waters

Things have been very exciting here at Cars 2nd Chance! We have been attracting the most amazing partners and we are thrilled! For a complete list of our Partners, visit this link. But for our June blog, we want to focus on one of our new partners, Project Healing Waters.

Project Healing Waters is a fly fishing group that benefits wounded military veterans. As a nonprofit, they are dedicated to building a community where all participants — namely disabled active military service personnel and disabled veterans — can heal their physical and emotional wounds. Fly fishing is the ideal setting where these participants can learn new techniques, be out in nature, make new friends, mentor, and be mentored. Truly, it’s a wonderful nonprofit organization.

They have a terrific video gallery showing the great work they’re doing through fly fishing. Check out some of their videos here: https://projecthealingwaters.org/video-gallery/

By partnering with Cars 2nd Chance, Project Healing Waters has the ability to seek car donations that will benefit their community. But what Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing does is much more than a one day fishing trip. For many participants, the socialization and camaraderie of the classes are just as important as the fishing outings. What they’re REALLY doing is casting a lifeline to the wounded veterans who need time to heal. If you know of anyone who would be interested in attending a Project Healing Waters online class or meeting, share this blog post and tell them to register here.

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Now that we’re entering the Summer months, you may get a strong desire to clear out the clutter from your garage and donate your unused vehicle. Your car or cash donation will help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a car that does not run. As always, we appreciate your love and support!

 

Where Are They Now? Stories About The Cars We Donated & The People Who Benefitted From Them

For many years, Cars 2nd Chance has donated cars to people and organizations in need. In this month’s blog, we thought we would look at the stories behind those car donations and find out what happened to the people and charities who benefitted from them.

Story #1

In 2017, the local Rotary Clubs donated vehicles to families in need within Contra Costa County. On May 4, 2017, the Clayton Valley-Concord Sunrise Rotary Club presented a refurbished 1998 Dodge Caravan to a family in need at the Monument Crisis Center. 

The Caravan was donated to Rotary by a Walnut Creek resident and was rehabilitated through donations of parts, time, and labor by local automotive services businesses, including:

  • Mechanical repairs from D&H Enterprises, owned by Dave and Mary Kemnitz
  • Smog repair parts and labor from West Coast Muffler, Automotive Service Councils of California ( ASCCA), and Steve Elstins
  • Paint and bodywork (complete) from Simply Superior Auto Body, owned by Rich Lezcano (a Rotary Club of Concord member)

Today, that family is doing well and appreciative of all the help they got from Cars 2nd Chance.

 Story #2

Another happy story is linked to a donated Recreational Vehicle. The Rotary Clubs of Clayton Valley/Concord and Moraga turned an unwanted motorhome into hope in Sierra Leone with the help of Cars2ndChance. The proceeds from the RV sale were matched by Rotary International and a project that the Moraga Rotary had undertaken in Sierra Leone to help children orphaned by the Ebola epidemic.

Story #3

After the Paradise Camp Fire in October of 2018, Cars 2nd Chance immediately jumped into action to provide needed vehicles to the Paradise fire victims.  Collaborating with California Vocations whose entire facility had been destroyed during the fire, Cars 2nd Chance reached out to the SF Bay Area Community for help. A total of 65 cars were donated, reconditioned, and sent to Paradise. Here are photos of one of the caravans of donated cars to Chico delivered to those fire victims. Of the 65 vehicles donated by Cars 2nd Chance, Seven people delivered these six donated cars on Friday, Feb 1, 2019.

 Before this special delivery, we met and finished the paperwork in the conference room of D&H Enterprises in Concord. Seven people caravanned in six cars to Chico to make the delivery. Some of the photos showed the cars crossing the bridge and entering Chico city limits.

Many families who lost everything in the fire were incredibly grateful to receive donated vehicles. Today, these fire victims have settled into new homes, rebuilt their lives and businesses, and thrived.

Cars 2nd Chance was developed to help others and make the world a better place through donated vehicles. There are many other happy stories to share, but we will save them for a later time. 

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! We hope these happy stories will inspire you to donate your unused vehicle. Your car or cash donation will help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a car that does not run. As always, we appreciate your love and support!

A New Partner: Orinda Association

In this month’s blog, we are featuring one of our new partners, the Orinda Association.

Based in Orinda, California, the Orinda Association is a community-focused nonprofit that supports various local groups. They are a wonderful organization that participates in events such as:

  • Donate box meals to honor Contra Costa Hospital Workers
  • Orinda Volunteer Center
  • The Orinda Annual Classic Car Show
  • The annual Fourth of July Parade
  • Transportation for Seniors Around Town
  • The Orinda News
  • Cars 2nd Chance
  • Orinda Community Foundation
  • And many more…

Founded in 1946, the Orinda Association set out to improve life quality for those living in Orinda. They have multiple volunteer events that enhance the natural beauty, community-mindedness, and character of the Orinda community. The Orinda News is the local printed news delivered to every Orinda household for free, and it’s available online.

Cars 2nd Chance is delighted to have the Orinda Association as a partner. On their website home page, they talk about our good deeds through monies raised by donated cars. https://orindaassociation.org/

If you want to buy a donated vehicle, give cash, or present a car to Cars 2nd Chance, now is a great time to share! Tax Day, spring cleaning, and the desire to clear out the clutter from your garage could inspire you to donate your unused vehicle. Your car or cash donation will help someone recover from a natural disaster or receive food from the Food Bank. First, reach out to cars2ndchance@gmail.com to donate a vehicle that runs, or send an email to clunkers4charity@gmail.com to donate a car that does not run. As always, we appreciate your love and support!