Sparkle Foundation founder Samantha Tradelius’ grandmother told a lot of stories about her life as a single mom raising three children in the 1950s. And yet, not once did she mention having help — or asking for it. Those stories stuck with Tradelius, inspiring her, in 2016, to form Novato-based Sparkle Foundation, an organization committed to empowering single mothers and their families.
Through three main programs, a Holiday Gift Drive, Scholarship Enrichment after-school programs, and a back-to-school Backpack Drive, the foundation and its all-volunteer board make a difference in single mothers’ lives; help teach their children to do the same; and provide an avenue for recipients to “pay it forward.” The foundation also collaborates with local law enforcement agencies, including the Novato Police Department, the San Rafael Police Department, and the Solano County Sheriff, as well as the Novato Unified School District.
Sparkle is unique in that 100% of all donations go directly to women and children in whatever way best meets their specific needs.
In the years since its creation, Sparkle Foundation has grown to three chapters in three major California geographic areas. The foundation and its many volunteers impact hundreds of lives every year.
The Next Big Idea… SparkleBiz!
The Sparkle Foundation team believes that women, and single mothers in particular, are some of the hardest working, most dedicated entrepreneurs out there. Women own more than 11.6 million companies in the United States and are a driving force in the success of the American economy, generating $1.8 trillion in gross receipts annually and employing nearly 9 million people. Yet, women-owned businesses receive only 7% of venture funds for start-ups and many that seek small business financing find traditional banks unwilling to provide support, forcing them to turn to alternative lenders for assistance.
Enter SparkleBiz, a new foundation dedicated to funding the dreams of women entrepreneurs by investing in single mothers who need short-term, interest-free loans. These microloans are provided to start their new businesses or expand their existing businesses and add additional value with access to a panel of industry experts for support, advice, and encouragement. SparkleBiz does not claim a stake in their business — the foundation offers opportunity with no ownership strings attached.
SparkleBiz aims to fund three to five women-owned businesses in the coming year and is asking for donations to help make that happen. Every dollar donated goes directly toward supporting a small business, generating funds for the local economy, and creating new jobs. www.sparklebiz.org