This is a regular feature on philanthropic activities by Valley-area business people and companies. Child and Family Guidance Center, a Northridge-based nonprofit facility, this month was awarded a $100,000 grant from the Weingart Foundation. The grant will support the center’s organizational sustainability and fund development efforts. For 50 years, the Child and Family Guidance Center has provided mental health care, supportive social services and resources to children and families in the San Fernando, Santa Clarita and Antelope valleys. Upon distributing grants, the Weingart Foundation selects organizations with activities that provide greater access to people who are economically disadvantaged and underserved Sylvia V. Henry, director of development at the Child and Family Guidance Center, said the nonprofit is grateful that the Weingart Foundation shares in its commitment to providing “evidence-based and field-centered” therapies to children. “The long-term impact of the grant will significantly affect our capacity to better serve families in our local communities,” Henry said. IHOP Breaks Fundraising Record with National Pancake Day Event IHOP, the Glendale-based family restaurant chain, shattered its fundraising record this year, generating more than $3 million through its annual National Pancake Day event. The fundraiser, held on Feb. 28, supports the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and other local charities. More than 1,500 IHOPs nationwide participated in this year’s event. This year, IHOP gave away nearly four million buttermilk pancakes, encouraging donations from customers. In a prepared statement, John Lauck, president and CEO of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, said only an “American icon like IHOP” could invoke such enthusiasm and generosity in both small and large communities. Boys and Girls Club Host Cuban-Themed Event On March 30, the Boys and Girls Club of West Valley is hosting its 8th Annual Club de Cuba event in support of its afterschool programs for children. The Caribbean-themed event will be held at the Warner Center Marriott hotel in Woodland Hills and feature casino games, music, dancing, dinner and silent and live auctions. Auction items will include vacation stays in San Diego and Monterey and Las Vegas, a helicopter ride and tickets and car service to the 2012 Emmy Awards. Tickets to the event are $100 per person or $150 for participants of the Texas Hold ‘em Poker Tournament. Club President and CEO Jan Sobel said the evening is a “win-win for all.” “Our community members and sponsors have the opportunity to enjoy a fun-filled evening, and the children at the Club directly benefit from the evening’s festivities,” she said. Nestlé USA Program Promotes Child Literacy In honor of National Reading Month, Glendale-based Nestlé USA teamed up with actress Kate Beckinsale this month for “The Nestle Share the Joy of Reading Program.” The actress visited the Barnes & Noble at The Grove shopping center in Los Angeles on March 1 and read to children and their families in an effort to raise awareness on the importance of children’s literacy. Through “The Nestlé Share the Joy of Reading Program,” consumers can help a child receive a new book every time they open specially marked packages of Nestlé candy including Butterfinger, Baby Ruth and 100 Grand. Each time a consumer enters a valid promotion code found inside specially marked packages of Nestlé candy at the program’s website, Nestlé will donate $.10 to Reading is Fundamental (RIF)-a national organization dedicated to children’s literacy. The current program will run from Jan. 1, through March 31. During that time, Nestlé will donate up to $250,000 to RIF. “Reading has had an enormous, positive impact on my life and I encourage people to support organizations such as RIF that work to ignite a child’s hunger for knowledge and inspire imagination,” Beckinsale said in a prepared statement. “I can’t think of a better time than National Reading Month to encourage everyone to read.” Curves Woodland Hills Hosts Annual Food Drive This month, Curves fitness club in Woodland Hills participated in Curves 14th Annual Food Drive which benefits area food banks. The club asked its members to donate bags of nonperishable food or cash through the month of March. The club also waived joining fees for new members who bring food or a donation of $30 to their local food bank. This year’s theme for the program is “Good for your body and your soul.” Curves founder Diane Heavin said the food drive is a natural extension to the club’s commitment to supporting the health and well-being of the community. “Many families are struggling with basic expenses and need some help to make ends meet,” Heavin said. “Our food drive gives our members a way to reach out and support their neighbors.” Curves International is awarding cash prizes to the clubs that collect the most food, show the greatest increase in donations over last year’s food drive and to two additional clubs selected at random.