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St. Anthony Foundation Gifted $1.8M Donation from The Carl Gellert and Celia Berta Gellert Foundation

Funds from the donation will be split among the foundation’s Companionship Model program and St. Clare’s Care service

St. Anthony Foundation was the recipient of a charitable donation in the amount of $1.8M from The Carl Gellert and Celia Berta Gellert Foundation in 2022. The funds will be split among two of the foundation’s many services: the Companionship Model program and St. Clare’s Care.

The Companionship Model is a multi-year commitment to individuals in the substance-use recovery and transitional employment programs. St. Clare’s Care provides a safe, daytime sleep space inside the St. Boniface Church, and guests can get connected to the medical clinic, Hygiene Hub, and other services within St. Anthony’s facilities.

“It’s arguably one of the best, it might be the biggest, nonprofit in San Francisco and certainly the leader in helping the poor and the marginalized on a daily basis,” said Robert (Bob) Grassilli Jr., board member of The Carl Gellert and Celia Berta Gellert Foundation. “Nobody has the resources that St. Anthony’s does, and we hope that by giving to St. Anthony’s, those resources continue, because if they don’t continue…it’s going to be very, very difficult for so many people to live in San Francisco.”

The gift allows St. Anthony’s to continue its mission – to feed, heal, shelter, clothe, lift the spirits of those in need, and create a society in which all persons flourish. St. Anthony’s is committed to providing pathways to hope, stability and renewal for people in need in our community.

“With this donation from The Carl Gellert and Celia Berta Gellert Foundation, St. Anthony’s is able to sustain these programs for years to come,” said Nils Behnke, CEO of St. Anthony’s. “Both of them address proven needs within our community, and the Companionship Model in particular, has changed lives already, with many more to come.”

Located in Daly City, The Carl Gellert and Celia Berta Gellert Foundation has made grants to charities all across the San Francisco Bay Area for 64 years. The foundation has supported numerous charitable causes over the years – from supporting educational institutions to social services for the homeless, low-income housing, and religious, public, and private school education. The grant represents a last round of gifts by the foundation.

A Bay Area native, Carl Gellert was a home builder, developing a strong reputation in the region, and was active in several professional industry-related organizations. He passed away in 1974. Celia Berta Gellert, also a Bay Area native, passed away in 2000.

“Since Carl Gellert was a home builder, (you) just don’t build a house and walk away, (you) build a community, and that’s what he always felt, and that’s why he started the foundation,” said Grassilli. “We’re fully invested in things that help folks on a daily basis, as well as long term, and St. Anthony’s is basically the top of the line.

“When we talk about anything in the Bay Area, you talk about St. Anthony’s – everybody knows St. Anthony’s. If you were here for 10 minutes, you’re (going to) know St. Anthony’s because they do such a great job of getting the word out to anyone. Help your fellow man. Help your fellow man on a daily basis…because none of us can get through life without help, and St. Anthony’s provides a terrific amount of help for folks in need.”

Watch the interview with Mr. Grassilli’s below, or visit our YouTube page here. And, if you would like to get involved, you can donate here and/or sign up to volunteer here. Thank you for your continued support.

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