Now for Some Good (and Great!) News in the East Bay…
Our last post about good news in the East Bay was so well received that we decided to do it again! Read on without fear, because nothing here should make you wring your hands with coronavirus worries, seethe with political rage, or think about murder hornets.
Disclaimer: We cannot be held responsible for your reaction to the extreme cuteness of baby animals pictured below.
Awww! Berkeley’s fuzzy falcon triplets are growing up
Coronavirus couldn’t stop the spring rites of the peregrine falcons who nest up in UC Berkeley’s Campanile. Tune in to the live webcams and watch them grow before your eyes. Annie and Grinnell have raised their chicks on the bell tower since 2017 and have fans in 45 countries.
Here’s some good news about great restaurateurs who are giving back to frontline workers and their families: Basil Pizzeria in Oakland recently delivered 60 pizza care packages to the staff at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital! The donation is part of the #FeedTheFirst campaign that Abio Properties has been supporting along with Best Coast Burritos. Consider being part of #FeedTheFirst campaign and donating a “Pizza Care Package” to ER and ICU staff around the East Bay. Donate here.
Not so alone: Helping hospital patients stay connected to loved ones
When Abio Properties Realtor Vikki Bearman’s daughter, Rachel Arganek, was unexpectedly hospitalized for three days, she was alone except for the nurses and doctors who tended to her. The 26-year-old’s parents couldn’t be by her side because John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek, like others across the country, enacted no-visitor policies to guard against the spread of COVID-19.
That meant Rachel’s cell phone was her lifeline to her mom, dad, and twin brother Jonathan. But like anyone who ends up in the hospital without a charger, that connection to the outside world lasts only as long as the cell battery.
Many patients can feel isolated and scared, despite a hospital staff’s best efforts to keep them comforted.
That’s why Vikki, whose daughter has a genetic connective tissue disorder called Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome that can cause complications resulting in frequent hospitalizations, began purchasing dozens of cell phone chargers and donating them to John Muir Medical Center. Vikki realized many patients and families could be in the same situation.
“I couldn’t talk to her. It was awful. She went in for an infusion and didn’t come out until three days later,” Vikki said.
“I want people to know that the little things they do right now can really matter to a lot of families.”
Vikki invites community members to join her in donating new, inexpensive chargers with long cords to area hospitals. Donating chargers in their original packaging is key because it eliminates the possibility of coronavirus contamination.
Contact the hospital nearest you to learn about their donation guidelines. To connect with John Muir Medical Center directly, email JMHdonations@johnmuirhealth.com.
How’s the weather up there?
Oakland Zoo recently welcomed Kijiji, a young 11-foot-tall female giraffe. Kijiji was moved here from a Kansas City zoo after the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan recommended that Kijiji would be a great genetic match for one of Oakland Zoo’s male giraffes. The almost 2-year-old still has a few years to go before she is interested in breeding.
Watch her cozy up to her new herd in the video above. We bet you’ll find it pretty sweet and soothing.
You also might get peeks at Kijiji on the zoo’s live and interactive behind-the-scenes channel. Consider subscribing to the broadcast to support Oakland Zoo while it’s shut down during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Spreading the word about struggling small businesses + arts groups
Abio real estate pros Katie Pratt and Shannon Prokup launched the Support East Bay Local 2020 group on Facebook to connect and promote East Bay restaurants, bars, festival vendors, freelancers, non-profits, and other small businesses affected by COVID-19. (#toosmalltofail)
As part of their efforts, Shannon has been hosting and posting video interviews with nonprofit leaders, arts organizers, and other local creatives about how they are managing during shelter-in-place.
Watch the most recent video to meet Alicia Champion and Danielle LoPresti of Durga Sound & Film Studio and learn how to support them and join their Friday Night Freeflow.
Shannon also interviewed the executive director of Destiny Arts Center for youth to help promote their virtual fundraising gala. Watch it here.
Drive-thru pomp and circumstance
Hayward’s Moreau High School celebrated its graduating seniors with a socially distanced, drive-thru graduation ceremony, ABC-7 News reported. Each grad drove onto campus and, without leaving the car, received a goody bag from teachers and administrators. They also received a yard sign and their cap and gown. Students found the event was a bittersweet end to their high school experience. Watch it here.
Get your Warriors fix
Warriors head coach Steve Kerr teamed up with longtime friend, Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, to create a limited-edition podcast about coaching championship-level NBA and NFL teams. Proceeds from the podcast, titled “Flying Coach,” have been going to COVID-19 relief efforts such as the World Relief Kitchen.
In other Warriors news:
The organization joined other Bay Area pro sports teams to donate 50,000 face coverings to healthcare providers.
And in honor of National Teacher Appreciation Day, the Warriors Community Foundation and Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced a $250,000 donation to Oakland and SF schools to buy more than 650 laptops for low-income Bay Area kids trying to learn from home while sheltering-in-place.
Peloton + VR headset included
Tired of working from home? Here’s a fun escape: Cross the bridge to Hotel Zetta, a 4-star boutique hotel in SF. The SF Business Journal reports that the hotel in SoMa transformed about 22 of its rooms into “Zetta Zen” workout and workspaces for locals. The sanitized rooms include workout equipment, yoga mat, shower, desk, fast Wi-Fi, Oculus Go VR Headsets, and, most importantly, peace and quiet.
Just for fun: When Realtors work from home
At Abio Properties, it’s our mission not only to help you find your dream home but also to show you why that home should be in the East Bay. We love highlighting the people and places that make our communities extraordinary, especially during these trying times of coronavirus. Please chime in with your own good news and stories by contacting us at 888-400-ABIO (2246) or firstname.lastname@example.org.