Carl Woodland of the Morgan Hill LDS church, Edward Boss Prado Foundation Executive Director Cecelia Ponzini and her husband Gary Ponzini were joined by city officials and volunteers at a March 2 ribbon cutting ceremony for a new storage pantry and other items donated by the LDS church. Photo: Michael Moore

With a donation from the Morgan Hill Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a local nonprofit foundation is now better equipped to serve even more people in need with holiday meals and other basic food necessities. 

The local church recently donated a storage shed—which serves as a food pantry—and two large freezers to the Edward Boss Prado Foundation. The donation also includes the installation of the shed and a concrete slab at the foundation’s headquarters on Peebles Avenue in north Morgan Hill, according to Carl Woodland, Director of Humanitarian Outreach for the Morgan Hill LDS church. 

The donation was provided as a “Humanitarian Grant” from the LDS church, which has a strong focus on community outreach and humanitarian assistance, Woodland explained. 

Woodland joined Prado Foundation Executive Director Cecelia Ponzini and several dozen City of Morgan Hill officials—including employees of the police and fire departments—local volunteers and representatives of local churches at a March 2 ribbon cutting ceremony at the foundation headquarters to celebrate the donation. 

“With this grant from the LDS church we are pleased to deepen the partnership as we open a new addition to (Cecelia’s Closet), which includes a new shed pantry and two freezers to help Cecelia and the Prado Foundation and its volunteers to advance a positive humanitarian impact in the Morgan Hill community,” Woodland said at the March 2 ceremony. 

Founded in 2013, the Prado Foundation includes Cecelia’s Closet and Food Pantry, which provides donated food, clothing and other necessities to families in need. The foundation started out serving people in Morgan Hill, but has expanded over the years to assist families in Gilroy, Hollister and beyond. 

Ponzini said March 2 that the Prado Foundation was recently able to help families in Half Moon Bay who were affected by recent shootings. She added that the Prado Foundation is “a nonprofit that supports other nonprofits.”

Woodland added that the LDS church has always been eager to help in Ponzini’s efforts because she practices “boots on the ground” charity. 

“She serves the community in such a selfless and tireless way,” Woodland said. “We are so blessed to be able to be a strong community helping others…and that we all get a chance to provide. And Cecelia is the backbone of what we’re able to accomplish in serving others in our community. We are so grateful to be part of that.”

Ponzini added that the two new freezers donated by the LDS church will allow the foundation to store frozen holiday turkeys and hams on site, instead of asking local restaurants to donate their space for such efforts as she has in the past. 

Morgan Hill Assistant City Manager Edith Ramirez at the March 2 ceremony thanked those in attendance—including Prado Foundation board members and volunteers—who have helped Ponzini fulfill the foundation’s mission. She noted that the Prado Foundation’s work goes a long way to help the many families in Morgan Hill and beyond who are considered “extremely low income” (less than $50,000 income for a family of four), and hundreds of children in local schools who are routinely at risk of becoming homeless. 

“Clearly, she does it with the help and support of all of you, the champions that have been and continue to be part of the fabric of this community,” Ramirez said. “The work you do is so meaningful and so important to us, and we want to thank you for the work that you do.”

For more information about the Edward Boss Prado Foundation, including how to donate, visit

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Michael Moore is an award-winning journalist who has worked as a reporter and editor for the Morgan Hill Times, Hollister Free Lance and Gilroy Dispatch since 2008. During that time, he has covered crime, breaking news, local government, education, entertainment and more.


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