Charity Begins Here 3

When Andrew Aussie and Mark Mandel founded Earnest Eats, they decided to guide their company with the philosophy of “Good In, Good Out, and Good Vibes.” To follow their mission, Earnest Eats strives to ensure that every part of their business practice supports a more verdant world; from their decision to source clean, healthy ingredients that have a positive impact on the environment to farming communities and their own consumers. The company donates a portion of sales to the International Rescue Committee (IRC) – a charity that is helping refugees to start anew and thrive. Earnest Eats is actively involved in the Del Mar and San Diego communities, whether supporting a local 10K race or the ongoing use of their social media platform to promote good. “We love the culture of Del Mar and Solana Beach that promotes health and wellness. When you’re surrounded by positive people and vibes, and forward-minded individuals and businesses, it spurs out-of-the-box thinking and leads to greatness,” says Mandel.

Meanwhile, San Diego Polo (a branch of Surf Cup Sports) works to develop and promote the sport throughout San Diego County. They coordinate polo activities, tournaments, and events for players, members and the public. All their signature events benefit a local nonprofit or branch of a national charity. As a community, they’ve helped raise millions of dollars for over 80 local charities and feature a long history of working with animal shelters, veterans groups, and others who promote healthy living and personal development, including offering a work-to-ride program that allows kids to volunteer their time working in their barn in exchange for time on a horse. When asked about what was truly special about the sport of polo, Lindsey Chronert, Director of Polo Development, says, “For me, the “it” moment that makes me love my job is when a polo event comes together and people connect with the sport and the cause.”

But one charity stands out of particular note, an organization that, for the last 112 years, has been almost synonymous with philanthropic work: The Rotary Club. While Rotary is an international organization, Rotary District 5340 encompasses San Diego and Imperial Valley, and Del Mar Rotary Club is our local branch here. They have been extremely active: they established St. Leo’s Medical and Dental Clinic to serve the medical and dental needs of those with limited access to such care, they provide scholarships to local students, they serve food at local events, among many other efforts.

Discussing his motivation for his philanthropic work, P. Martin Peters (former Rotary President) says, “We are blessed with some degree of affluence. Let’s use it to serve by feeding the hungry, housing the homeless.” Meanwhile, Dr. Janice Kurth (former Rotary District Governor) says of her journey through the Rotary, “I immediately understood their heart for serving others and knew I had to be a part of it. Rotary is an organization that will change your life.”