Odds and Ends

Odds and Ends – March 2023

Ordinarily, an event such as this wouldn’t warrant more than a passing note in the Splash Pad News but the Treasure Sale at Piedmont Community Church on March 11 and 12 is the exception. For the past twenty-five years, they’ve had students and adults venturing to Tijuana and Tecate during Spring Break where they’ve constructed 350 homes for families in need. That first group consisted of 20 kids and adults combined. Under the leadership of Youth Minister Scott Kail, they have 197 students and 54 adults heading south this April with plans to build 15 more homes. All the expenses are funded by the proceeds from the sale. As a semi-retired antiques dealer, I can vouch for the quality and quantity of the items available for purchase. Donations for the sale are welcomed from March 4 through March 8. More details about donating and the sale hours are here.

The clothing collection bins on the left at the Chevron gas station on Grand at Perkins are there illegally in violation of a city ordinance regulating their placement. The very same nonprofit had two identical bins in the same location just over a year ago. They were cited by the city and eventually removed and now they’re back. The Recycle for Change bins on the right in the Lucky stores parking lot on 17th Street are also there illegally. Ironically, this is the bogus nonprofit that challenged the legality of the ordinance. Their challenge went all the way to the Supreme Court and was rejected at all levels. Please support local nonprofits instead that provide valuable services and the donated goods stay in Oakland where they’re available for purchase by low income families. P.S. The same applies to the postcards that you may or may not get in the mail saying a truck will be in your neighborhood. Although they claim to be supporting charitable causes, it is a total scam. For more info, visit DonateOakland.org.

If you’re online and interested in Oakland, chances are you’ve seen posts by Allen Alden about our geological history. He’s just announced that he’s published a book titled In Deep Oakland that should be available soon and, according to Walden Pond Books, they’ve ordered multiple cartons.

Urban Omnibus just published an interesting article about the extent to which cities have increasingly relied on volunteers, business improvement districts and non-profits to take on responsibilities that were originally their own. This is certainly the case here in Oakland. For an interesting and provocative read, we’d recommend clicking here.

An even more timely article in CAL Matters began with this premise: A December report concluded that California can solve homelessness through investments of $8.1 billion in housing, shelter and supportive services every year for the next 12 years. The price tag is high, but advocates argue that the status quo will be more expensive. Read more here.