February 20, 2014 – Chula Vista, CA – On Thursday, February 20, 2014, the Chula Vista Charitable Foundation (CVCF) joined 100 YMCA ASES (After School Education and Safety) youth, and members of the UTC Aerospace Systems Early Professional Organization to celebrate Engineers Week at Vista Square Elementary School (540 G Street) in Chula Vista. Engineers Week celebrates how engineers make a difference in our world, increases public dialogue about the need for engineers and brings engineering to life for kids, educators, and parents. Visit www.discovere.org for more information.

Engineering has become “the” degree to have with the increase of baby boomers retiring in the next five years. According to the National Society of Professional Engineers, the number of jobs for engineers is estimated to grow in the 15 to 20 percent range over the next 10 years. “Education is the key. It is up to us to be the catalyst for change. Our engineers are excited to work with the YMCA youth to provide that educational opportunity that they need and deserve,” stated Colin Cramp, Vice President of Engineering & Technology, UTC Aerospace Systems – Aerostructures.

Every 29 seconds a baby is born into poverty. Every 47 seconds a child is abused or neglected. Currently, the Hispanic community makes up the largest group of children living in poverty in the country, and is reflective in the area that the South Bay Family YMCA serves. The partnership with UTC Aerospace Systems engineers will meet the needs for the most vulnerable members of the south bay community on the west side of Chula Vista. Visit www.southbay.ymca.org for more information.

UTC Aerospace Systems is one of the largest employers in Chula Vista. Engineers from their Early Professional Organization celebrated Engineers Week at Vista Square Elementary School by providing 100 youth with dialogue and hands-on engineering opportunities. Learning stations were set-up to teach students general information on airplanes and the equipment needed to build operable airplanes. Activities culminated with students building their own airplanes and competing to see which “flew” the farthest when thrown.

This simple, yet sincere effort will without a doubt, “move the needle” and foster a positive experience for children of low-income households on the west side of Chula Vista. “In an area of the community where families are struggling to make ends meet and police sirens are common, pursuing a career in engineering is likely to be an afterthought. We are always pursing opportunities to inspire our youth for limitless options” stated Alexia Sigarroa, YMCA STRETCH Coordinator.

“We are proud to support the philanthropic spirit here today!” stated Michael Meacham, Board Chair of the Chula Vista Charitable Foundation. “A healthy philanthropic infrastructure is critical to a high quality of life for the Chula Vista community. We commend the South Bay Family YMCA for their robust work to enrich the time children spend in before and after school care and the members of UTC’s Early Professional Organization for modeling and dispensing hope and inspiration to our youth. Both are incredible community partners.”

About the Chula Vista Charitable Foundation
The mission of the Chula Vista Charitable Foundation, an affiliate of The San Diego Foundation, is to improve the quality of life within Chula Vista by promoting and increasing responsible and effective philanthropy. The CVCF seeks to increase charitable giving by and for the benefit of all who live and work in Chula Vista, build a Chula Vista endowment to provide for the community in perpetuity and give Chula Vista community members a vehicle for legacy planning and gifts to benefit Chula Vista now and forever. CVCF members are active participants in deciding how and where to make an impact in their community. Half of all CVCF membership dues go immediately into grantmaking efforts, while the other half goes into a permanent endowment to sustain future efforts for the good of the Chula Vista community. For information on becoming a member, visit www.chulavistacharitablefoundation.org or contact Zaneta Salde Encarnacion, through email at zaneta@sdfoundation.org or by phone, (619) 814-1328.

About The San Diego Foundation
Founded in 1975, The San Diego Foundation’s purpose is to promote and increase effective and responsible charitable giving. The Foundation manages more than $635 million in assets, almost half of which reside in permanent endowment funds that extend the impact of today’s gifts to future generations. Since its inception, The Foundation has granted more than $846 million to the San Diego region’s nonprofit community. For additional information, please visit The San Diego Foundation at sdfoundation.org.

Zaneta Salde Encarnacion, (619) 814-1328, zaneta@sdfoundation.org