Forecasting Demand for Andson Services

by Anthony McTaggart

Its the beginning of 2015, and that means that corporations - both for profit and nonprofit - have to report to both shareholders and board members.

I was engaged in a conversation with an engineer at a public corporation recently, where he (and soon, I) was upset about the potential for, and complete lack of forecasting that was going on for production of their product line. Initially, I said to myself "Why aren't they forecasting?" That quickly changed to, "Wait, why aren't WE forecasting?"

Forecasting demand is required for most businesses - but may be overlooked in the nonprofit sector. It’s the analysis of past performance in one’s organization, combined with data that alludes to demand for future products, performance, or markets. In essence, it can be a beautiful symbiosis of art and science, one that usually takes time to hone and eventually master.

Some of us are so busy in the day-to-day that we often don’t plan ahead for what's to come. That can lead to two things: Either we have unsustainable growth that causes unplanned budgetary expenditures, or we get into the "No" mode - where we couldn't possibly grow since we have no time to plan where that funding or partnership might come from. How are we to serve a rapidly growing community if we don't plan for it?

Every window in my office is used as a whiteboard

Going forward for the 2015- 16 school year, we as an organization will be looking at 55% of our programming, in terms of budget and locations, being attributed to pre-existing, in place programming; 25% will come from new funding, meaning new locations. For the other 20%, meaning new business, we will be engaging in real demand forecasting. What this entails, is paying attention to data across the Valley: population growth, new communities, new partner locations (like where a new library or Boys & Girls Club are planned), trends in test scores, and areas of general concern in the community.

This isn't difficult, but it does take meaningful dialogue and time - now is the time to start within your own organizations.

If you think you don't have someone that can do this, you might be pleasantly surprised. Look no further than your Development and Marketing team. Mixed with some programming staff, you can have a forecasting team built and deployed by the end of February! Great Development staff have their ear to the ground and are always identifying new resources. This is learned behavior and can be taught. Great Marketers are used to deploying new collateral quickly, and creating a following. Great programming staff can quickly engage in feasibility analyses to conduct new programs.

Our team is amazing, and we are willing to help! Please contact us if you want to grab a coffee and discuss how to become better at forecasting. It would be a wonderful feeling to know what the next year of partnership holds. We look forward to sustainability and planned growth going forward for both our organization, and yours.

Cheers, Anthony

Andson Receives Pinnacle Achievement Award

Just in time for the new academic year, we are elated and honored to be recognized by State Treasurer Kate Marshall and the National Association of State Treasurers for our efforts in fostering Financial Literacy.  We have worked, and continue to work tirelessly to develop and deliver innovative curriculums that encourage students to think critically about personal finance.  The new school year brings new projects for Andson in the Financial Literacy front and we look forward to expanding our partnerships to give more students access to the knowledge they need to improve their quality of life.

“The Andson Orgaization, in part through the efforts of Matt Hirsch, has been a great community partner, complementing the Treasurer’s Office efforts to drive and foster financial literacy education in the Clark County School District.  ‘The Piggybank Project’ has served as a model program for helping kids and parents to understand financial concepts, and to encourage money saving habits, while building decision making skills regarding money."

Download Press Release

Children Ready to Head Back 2 Class!

Andson and St. Rose Dominican Hospitals hosted the second annual Back 2 Class Bash on Saturday, August 3rd at the Goett Family Park in Southern Highlands.  Families came out to enjoy an evening full of entertainment, free food, informational booths, and raffle prizes. Backpacks filled with schools supplies donated by the Las Vegas Hospitality Association and The Office Depot Foundation were handed out to approximately 600 children.

"Having a summer event is a great way to get students excited about heading back to class" said Sonia Anderson, founder and CEO of the Andson Organization. "The heat didn't keep families and the community from participating, more than a 1000 people joined the festivities."

Children played and bounced their way through Andson's Back 2 Class Bash that included fun carnival games and inflatables. Both kids and grown-ups had their pictures taken with Cosmo from Las Vegas 51's!  The event also featured several community agencies such as Las Vegas-Clark County Library, Southern Nevada Health District, Clark County Fire Department, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Clark County School Police, as well as family-support organizations.

This year's Back 2 Class Bash was made possible through the generous support of many organizations, businesses, and individuals that donated their time and resources. "Ensuring that our students are healthy and ready to return to school is a pleasure." said Rod Davis, President and CEO of St. Rose Dominican Hospitals. The event was also sponsored by American West Homes, M Resort Spa Casino, Nevada State Bank, and the Southern Highlands Community Association.

Andson will be distributing the remaining backpacks and school supplies to other children across the Valley that benefit from Andson's outreach efforts and academic programs. Please join us in thanking all these amazing donors, friends, partners, and supporters who made Andson's Back 2 Class bigger and better.

Co-Presenting Sponsor

St. Rose Dominican Hospitals

Backpacks Sponsors

Las Vegas Hospitality Association The Office Depot Foundation

Event Sponsors

American West Homes M Resort Spa Casino Nevada State Bank Southern Highlands Community Association

Special Acknowledgements

Cosmo from Las Vegas 51's Tom Donoghue Heidi Hayes

Event Supporters

Bank of America Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Nevada Cragin & Pike Fresh and Easy Molly Malone's Irish Pub Robyn Peot Raising Canes Town & Country Bank

Event Contributors 

Ace Hardware BASE Entertainment Buca di Beppo Discovery Children's Museum Egg & I and Egg Works Girl Scouts of Southern Nevada Las Vegas 51's Lisa's Pet Care Services M Resort Spa Casino Maverick Helicopters Miller's Ale House Miracle Mile Shops Off the Strip Planet Hollywood International Pole Position Raceway Premier Exhibitions Professor Nail & Spa Richard Petty Driving Experience Silver State School Credit Union Smith & Wollensky Southern Highlands Cyclery Star Nursery The Next Level Baseball Academy UNLV Football Whole Foods Henderson

Community Vendors

All People Christian Church All Smiles Dental American Red Cross Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Nevada Century Link Clark County Fire Department Clark County School District Police Girls Scouts of Southern Nevada Jenny's Choice Kidz Kidz Kidz Preschool Las Vegas-Clark County Library Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department M Family Care Moms Club of Southern Highlands Nevada State College SAFY of America Southern Nevada Health District Spread the Word Nevada Star Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry Tracy Brigida United Studios of Self Defense University of Nevada Reno UNLV Athletics Walgreens


Robert Alford Doug Anderson Baylee Bernstein Shelley Caiazzo Brittany Carlovsky Paige Donovan Angela Foremaster Justin Foremaster Matt Hirsch Dave Jones Akasia Latiff Bibi Latiff Denise Manfra Ashley McTaggart Pam Monaco Peggy Olliges Ashley Ramautar Dora Randolph Angela Rock Maryn Russell Nicole Schlamann Caitlin Shea Sabrina Singh Susan Stern Ashley Tarchione Chris Tervo Elizabeth Tervo Ashton Warner Jeannie Warner Amber Womack

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Summer Reading 2013

Andson Academics is partnering with Vegas PBS to encourage children to stay engaged in learning  throughout the summer break. Running at 10 different sites, students K-4 are building vocabulary skills around the exciting adventures of Martha Speaks! These are the new words that children have learned over the last couple of weeks:

Extraordinary, Stupendous, Talent, Unique Hero, Rescue, Brave, Courageous Fantasy, Real, Pretend, Actually Remedy, Recuperate, Healthy, Cure

Kids not only enjoy watching the Martha Speaks episodes but also sharing some of questions they would ask their pets if they could answer...

Do you like to take baths? If you were a fish, would you wear clothes? Do you want a friend because you are always alone at the house?

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Kid's TEAching Stand!

Andson Academics has decided to launch a new initiative to teach children the basics of running a business while raising money for their own tutoring sites.  Starting at the Boys and Girls Club of Southern Highlands, Andson will teach children how to setup a tea stand (entrepreneurship), create a budget and keep track of the money (accounting), and let people know about the idea (marketing).

The first Kid's TEAching Stand will be debuted at the upcoming Back 2 Class Bash on Saturday, August 3rd from 5 to 7 pm at the Goett Family Park in Southern Highlands. Children will be selling tea themselves, and with the generous donation of tea from Raising Cane's, 100 percent of the proceeds will go to Andson's Homework Help & Tutoring program at the Boys & Girls Club of Southern Highlands.

Stay tuned for more information!


Letter from Leadership

Dear Friends,

I am delighted to share the news of our progress and the remarkable milestones we have accomplished over the last few months. As one of the leading organizations providing Academic and Financial Literacy Education to the children and youth of Southern Nevada, we deliver a full range of unique and innovative learning programs across the valley.

For the past few years, our fundraising efforts have been quite minimal. In many ways, we have been shy about asking others for money before proving results. But April catapulted our philanthropic quest to a whole new level as Andson joined the selected group of charities that benefit from the Annual Governor's Black-Tie Invitational. With a wonderful gift of $80K, the Southern Highlands Charitable Foundation is fueling our work to equip students with the tools they need to achieve intellectual growth and academic success.

May marked the completion of the 2012-2013 school year. Eight months in which over 2,500 students across the Las Vegas Valley received supplemental education through our Academic Assistance program and tailored Financial Literacy classes. We graduated approximately 800 students in our Homework Help & Tutoring program with notable improvements of one to two grade levels in all areas – these students enjoyed pizza parties and received certificates of achievement! Simultaneously, almost 2,000 students from kinder to high school seniors at three different public schools learned the basics of personal finance and money saving habits.

May also marked the installation of a diverse and fully functional Board of Directors. Armed with a new president, secretary and treasurer, we are prepared to embark on a strategic planning process that will allow us to grow sustainably, deepening in breadth and impact. Moving into the summer season, we all look forward to continuing our efforts in education by delivering a summer reading program and hosting Andson's Back to Class Bash on Saturday, August 3rd – sponsored by St. Rose Dominican Hospitals and the Southern Highlands Community Association.

On behalf of the Board of Directors and Staff, we would like to thank you for your friendship and hope that you will consider joining our various initiatives – together we can make a difference!

Kindest regards,[spacing amount=20]

Sonia McTaggart-Anderson Founder and CEO


Second Annual Back 2 Class Bash!

Join us on Saturday, August 3rd from 5 pm to 7 pm at the Goett Family Park in Southern Highlands for a fun-filled evening  featuring bounce houses, face painting, balloon art, carnival games, and much more! [spacing amount=20]

Presented in partnership with St. Rose Dominican Hospitals, Andson's Back 2 Class Bash celebrates Education while families enjoy an evening of music, arts, and entertainment. The event will also include giveaways, raffle drawings and community booths. Backpacks and school supplies will be given away on a first-come, first-served basis. Following the event at 8 pm, event participants and attendees will be invited to stay for a free movie at the park (Madagascar 3) sponsored by the Southern Highlands Community Association.

As part of the Summer Reading Program, a group of children from Henderson and Boulder City will be attending the Andson's Back 2 Class Bash as a reward for their efforts and summer adventure! Another group of Andson students will be participating and leading the TEAching Stand initiative.

Contact us TODAY if you would like to join the festivities and support our efforts. There are several different ways to participate and get involved - click here to download participation form!

Become a volunteer Sponsor a child for summer adventure Donate a raffle prize Become an event vendor Sponsor a free food station Donate backpacks + school supplies Become an event sponsor Become a program sponsor


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Savvy Shopper's Corner! The Smart Online Shopper

Shopping online is a great convenience, yet there is the agony of waiting for your order to be shipped and arrive on time. Here is some information, which may be considered helpful when shopping online. Plan Your Purchase

The earlier you make your purchases, the greater chance they will arrive on time. To cut down on shipping costs, try to order many items at once from a single retailer. Your purchases should be lumped together into one large package with one shipping fee attached. By registering with an online retail site, you can start your online shopping and any items in your shopping cart will be retained until you either delete or purchase them. Then, you can ship everything at once and at one price. Many online retailers offer free shipping on purchases over a certain dollar amount, and online coupon sites regularly offer free shipping coupon codes. If you can’t catch a break on shipping, ordering early enough will allow you to choose standard shipping. It’s always the slowest method, but if you order early, it should get to you on time.  Give yourself a little more time if you are ordering from a third party vendor through a big online retailer.

Bargain Hunting

Online shopping presents consumers with a wonderful new advantage – the ease of bargain hunting. Prior to shopping via the internet, finding the lowest price for an item meant using catalogs and circulars, traveling from store to store. Not so much anymore. Often, a simple Google search of the item you want will find even better deals. Search discount sites for the item you want before buying it elsewhere. These retailers purchase excess items that manufacturers could not unload on other retailers at a discount and generally pass the savings onto customers. Don’t be afraid of purchasing refurbished items either—this is often more surplus inventory. Do a quick search for coupons for the retailer available on other sites. Many stores will happily provide you with their own promotional codes if you sign up for their email newsletters.  Enter the code before you check out to earn the savings on your purchase.

Return Item Fee

Online shopping could eventually mean not so many physical retail stores, but even if that happens, the warehouse will always be there to storage merchandise and to employ people to stock these warehouses. If you return an item, it still has to be repackaged and replaced, although the retailer has not made any money from the return. As a result, online retailers have begun to charge restocking fees on returned items. Before proceeding to checkout, familiarize yourself with the retailer’s return policies. Simply packaged items like books or defective products should not cost you any more money to return.

Be Secure

There are some measures online shoppers can take to minimize their risk. First, ensure that all online shopping is carried out only on secured sites. It is advisable only to use credit cards rather than debit cards, for online shopping. Credit cards are an extension of credit while debit cards withdraw directly from your bank account.  Once in possession of your banking information, hackers can do much more damage to your finances than with your credit card number.  Using only one credit card for online shopping is another great way to shop on line. The potential for fraud is limited to one account.

Remember, online shopping, while convenient, could pose more risk.

Martha Speaks is coming to Andson Academics!

The days are getting warmer by the minute, which means summer is around the corner. Children are coming closer to the end of the school year but that does not mean they have to stop learning. We are excited to announce the partnership of Vegas PBS and Andson Academic to provide a fun reading program so children can keep their minds active. The summer reading program is developed around the exciting adventures of Martha Speaks; a dog name Martha eats alphabet soup that goes to her brain instead of her stomach. Now, Martha knows how to talk!

During the Martha Speaks Reading Buddies Program, kids watch and talk about a MARTHA SPEAKS episode, read and discuss a related picture book, play a game or do an activity, and then write in a journal. Students support each other, while improving their vocabulary knowledge.


The Martha Speaks Reading Buddies Summer Program will be provided for free at all the Boys & Girls Clubs of Henderson, St. Anne’s summer location, the YMCA Heinrich Club, and St. Jude’s Ranch, as part of their activity rotation.

We start the 5-week program on June 17th!


Andson Academics is very excited to team up with Vegas PBS to provide this fun learning program to our different sites. We hope to continue this partnership to provide education to all children. Stay tuned to hear some success stories from the program!

If you would like to volunteer to help with this program, please contact us!


Project Connect - time to get connected

This has been a busy year.

What started as a small effort has grown to huge proportions. It's difficult to think that we will reach nearly 2,000 students this year in Financial Literacy. Estimates for Homework Help and Tutoring are even higher.

We started with an idea, a mission to change behaviors in regard to personal finance and education. This mission has helped us reach new partnerships, connect with new communities, and mentor new students.

The creativity of our lessons has gotten us some recognition too - something we're quite proud of.

And yet, we can't stop. We really are only as good as the lessons and services we provide.

Enter Project Connect. For 2 years, this idea has been brewing. The idea is simple - Andson wants professionals from our community to give input to our programming.

So, one Friday each month, we will be hosting Project Connect at our offices in Southern Highlands. Come by for some appetizers and drinks, and give us some input into the services we provide. Have a lesson idea for high schoolers? Any input on what we should do with Kindergartners after their homework packets are done? Please, share.

Come be a part of our think tank on education and personal finance. We believe the way to extend our reach in the community, is well, our community.

Pampas is supporting our fundraising efforts on 4/25/13

- Download Flyer -

For the serious steak lovers, Pampas Churrascaria is hosting a fundraiser in support of the Andson Organization.  Now through Thursday, April 25, locals and tourists have a chance to accomplish three things at once:

1. Enjoy an unlimited parade of top sirloin, lamb, picanha, smoked ham, shrimp, salmon and much more, all hand-carved tableside, along with an extensive all you can eat buffet bar!

2. Support Andson's academic after-school programs – every dollar counts, and will go directly toward helping our Homework Help & Tutoring Program.

3. Participate in Nevada's Big Give – Pampas will make a final online donation on April 25th that will count towards Nevada's big goal.

Dine out and give back – that’s Fullanthropy! ... vegetarians can join us as well.

 - Download Flyer -

Join us for Nevada's Big Give on April 25th!

On November 27, 2012, the Andson Organization was granted full public nonprofit 501(c)(3) status by the Internal Revenue Service.  This nonprofit status is leading the way for many new and exciting changes for our organization.  Our academic programs are gaining momentum and we are taking all the necessary steps to ensure our "abilities" - sustainability, accountability and credibility.

As we reach different milestones, we would like to invite you to participate in the upcoming Nevada's Big Give on Thursday, April 25th and help us set our first-time record of online giving.  No donation is too small, and your contribution will go directly to support our Homework Help & Tutoring Program.

Nevada's Big Give is an online giving initiative that has a goal of raising $1 million in one 24-hour period for more than 400 nonprofit organizations across the State. This is an opportunity for all of us to get involved in our communities and give back a little.  All donations will be made online through one central website where you can find, and support the cause or causes closest to your heart – mark your calendar and stay tuned for more updates!

For more information on supporting the Andson Organization and its academic programs, contact Andrea Pineda at

Education + Personal Finance are the foundation of Andson's April workshops

Andson is constantly committed to teaching students Personal Finance skills. It's April! That means it's Financial Literacy MONTH! We have identified a few key areas that we can really have an impact for students in just one short lesson. Education is an investment that students NEED to make - whether trade school or college, students with a secondary education will have more opportunities than those who only graduate high school. So how can we make sure students have a foundation to understand that debt can hurt a student fresh-out-of-school faster than any other force?  

In April, Andson's Financial Team will work with the following institutions to inform students about the pitfalls and positives of credit - as well as provide ongoing support to these student bodies.

    • Desert Oasis High School - Seniors will go through an intense Debt and Financial Aid seminar on 4/23. We will be working with over 600 students!


    • Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth ⁃ Nevada has a serious issue with teens that are homeless. However, given the right resources, they can go on to be successful. These students, more than any other, need to be made aware of the resources they can use to fuel their mission of independence and success.


    • Nevada State College is an amazing school in the southeast of Henderson. NSC and Andson are partners in so many activities, so it seemed only natural to bring a seminar on pitfall and installment credit to their student body. We are so happy to provide this as a resource to students in Southern Nevada.


We are so proud to be a part of Southern Nevada - let's give our students the resources they need to succeed!

What a Wonderful Breakfast!


On Tuesday, February 26th,  the Andson and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Henderson hosted the 2013 Faces of the Future Breakfast that benefited educational programs at all the clubhouses across the Valley.  The breakfast not only gave local community professionals the opportunity to meet and mingle, but also provided a glimpse into the work being done to equip children and young adults with the skills and knowledge they need to thrive.

Thank you to everyone who took time out of their busy schedules to attend the 2013 Faces of the Future Breakfast, as well as those who decided to generously made a gift in support of our efforts. It has been an incredible year for the Andson Organization, and we were happy to celebrate education with over 200 guests in attendance.  The breakfast aimed to raise funds for our Homework Help & Tutoring Program, which has grown to nearly 700 students per day throughout the Valley, also increased community awareness of our organization and forged new relationships with key community partners.

We are also grateful to our guest speakers, sponsors, community leaders, and each of our table captains for their dedication and partnership. Without their valuable contribution, it would not have been possible to have had such a successful event - please join us in thanking them!

Guest Speakers Katie Decker Ryder Donohue Terry Manley Lauree Porter Ken Rubeli Christine Spadafor

Sponsors Molly Malone's Irish Pub Morrissey Insurance NV Energy Southern Highlands Charitable Foundation Whole Foods Youth Charities of Southern  Nevada 

Vendors PM Digital Rebel Party Rentals Ricardo's

Community Leaders Boys & Girls Clubs of Henderson City of  Henderson Clark County School District Communities in Schools Goodwill of Southern Nevada HopeLink of Southern Nevada Nevada State College Silver State Schools Credit Union St. Jude's Ranch for Children United Way of Southern Nevada Vegas PBS

Acknowledgments James Duplisea Natalia Hsiao Cass Palmer Andson Academics Tutors Andson Staff Boys and Girls Clubs of Henderson Staff

Congratulations Tom DeVore Stephanie Garcia-Vause Sean Johnson Ulysses Martinez

More photos on our Facebook page!

Seeking Volunteers Who Are Willing To Be The Change!

Arun Ghandi commented about his grandfather's most famous saying "you must be the change you want to see in the world" - he said this when he was speaking after prayer service and he mentioned this because people kept saying to him that the world has to change for us to change. He said, "No, the world will not change if we don't change." So we have to make the beginning ourselves. It has always been human nature to blame someone else for everything that is happening. It's never us. We are never at fault. And he tried to make us realize that we are just as much at fault as anybody else. Unless we change ourselves, and help people around us change nobody will change because everybody will just be sitting around waiting for change to happen.

We at the Andson Organization are working hard to change the odds for children and young adults. We want to be the change and we would love to have you join us! Our Homework Help & Tutoring Program is providing mentoring and academic assistance to hundreds of students across the Valley.  Many of these children are waiting for just one caring adult or mentor to step in to help them beat the odds. Along with us, YOU have the chance to be that adult for a child in our community – we are looking for caring individuals who are willing to donate their time and talents as a volunteer! If you are ready to BE the change, please visit United Way of Southern Nevada's Volunteer Center and let us know you want to join us.

Together, we can change the odds so all children are prepared to succeed in school and in life.


Join us for this meaningful one-hour event!

The Andson Organization and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Henderson will be hosting the second annual Faces of the Future Breakfast on Tuesday, February 26th for anyone who would like to learn about the foundation’s educational programs at the Boys & Girls Clubs, provide financial support, or volunteer. The FREE breakfast will be held at the Southern Highlands Boys & Girls Club, located at 10900 Southern Highlands Parkway. Registration is at 7:30 a.m. with breakfast beginning at 8 a.m. For reservations or to become a table captain, call (702) 785-0020 or email

"For the past three years, the Andson Organization has been helping kids learn the skills they need to succeed in today's world, and Faces of the Future 2013 will celebrate the impact of Andson's Homework Help & Tutoring Program conducted in partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Henderson," said Ken Rubeli, CEO of the Boys & Girls Club of Henderson. "Success comes with a good support system, and the Andson Organization is playing a vital role in our efforts to serve the community. With the foundation’s help, we hope to instill a love of learning in our children and the merit of working hard."

Offered at no cost to club members, students receive help with homework troubles and one-on-one or small group tutoring in reading, math, social studies, and science at seven different Boys & Girls Clubs of Henderson, locations (listed below) for two hours Monday through Thursday. In just a few years, the after-school program has grown from 150 to 700 students in daily attendance and employs a staff of more than 35 certified teachers from the Clark County School District, along with several aides from Nevada State College's Federal Work Study Program.

This is a FREE fundraising event.  There is no obligation to give, and there is no minimum or maximum gift. But the wonderful stories of students, families, educators and community members will surely inspire you to give. This is also a great opportunity to tour the club and meet fellow guests and staff.



Thanks to the generosity of our friends and supporters, 40 local families and over 160 family members received an outpouring of thoughtful presents and gift cards. More than 30 groups and individual donors participated in our 2012 Adopt-A-Family Program - making it bigger and better for its second year!!

We would like to extend our sincere gratitude to those organizations and employee groups who went the extra mile to ensure that less-fortunate families in our community had a happy holiday season: Allegiant Air, Becker Realty,  Belfor Property Restoration, BNY Mellon Wealth Management, Galleria at Sunset, Molly Malone's Irish Pub, Morrissey Insurance, PM Digital Group, and Southwest Gas.  Special thanks go to  Albertsons, Cici's Pizza, Papa John's, and Subway for contributing to the holiday get-togethers we hosted for the adopted families.

We would also like to thank the Boys and Girls Clubs, Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation and Candlelighters for their partnership, support, and coordination. Our goal is to continue working in collaboration with like-minded organizations that focus on the well-being of children and their families.

Thank you all for supporting our efforts and best wishes for the New Year!


Join The Andson Organization In Helping Families Celebrate The Holidays!

Our goal is simple: spread holiday cheer to families in need. We began last year, and with the help of generous sponsors like you, we adopted 25 local families. Small steps, big strides - this year we would like to support 35 families in the greatest need. These are families referred to us through our partnerships with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Las Vegas and Henderson, as well as the Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation. We invite you to join this heartwarming effort!

As a sponsor, you will receive a wish list from the family and we ask that you donate one or two gifts for each member of the family and a gift certificate to a local grocery store. Holidays are a busy time and there are numerous ways you can participate. Don't worry, we like it simple too:

► Complete the printable donation form and return it to us as soon as possible, no later than Wednesday, November 28th. ► Donations need to be delivered to our office by Wednesday, December 12th. If you would prefer to make a contribution towards our program and have us do the shopping for you, simply complete the donation form. ► Meet the families or remain anonymous. Holiday get-togethers with the adopted families will be scheduled from December 17th through December 22nd - participation is voluntary!

We hope you will consider supporting a family in need this holiday season - thank you so very much for caring and sharing. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have at (702) 785-0020 or email Andrea Pineda at

Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season!!


On Friday, October 5th, 300 students at Bracken Elementary School made their first deposit and in a matter of a few hours the school's bank account hit the $1,000 mark!!! Just as they would do in a real bank, children patiently stood in line waiting for their turn to see the "bank teller" and hand over their deposit slips and passbooks - each student received an opening deposit of 25 cents donated by the Young Philanthropist Society.

United Way's Young Philanthropists Society members are leading this unique financial literacy initiative designed to teach children how to save money through an innovative curriculum and by simulating a traditional banking experience.  During the course of the 2012-2013 school year, students at Bracken Elementary School will learn the basics of personal finance while stressing the importance of saving and spending wisely.

"The Piggy Bank" at Bracken Elementary will be open on Fridays from 8:30am to 9:30am giving students the opportunity to put into practice the lessons they learned in the classroom.  This is another example of successful community collaboration and we are excited to be part of it!  - "The Piggy Bank" is a partnership between United Way of Southern Nevada, Junior Achievement, Silver State Credit Union, Walter Bracken Elementary School, and the Andson Organization.

Congratulations to all the kids and families at Bracken Elementary School in taking the first steps on the road to financial responsibility!!