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Live Like Coco Foundation

Live Like Coco

Organization Mission

The Live Like Coco Foundation helps kids grow up healthy and with opportunities to pursue their dreams. Our foundation is named and inspired by Coco Lazenby, a self-described “book lover, cat petter and environmentalist,” who was killed in a car accident in 2015 at age 12. To honor Coco’s bright spirit and big heart, our foundation works in four areas that made a difference in her life: literacy, nature, health, and funding for extracurricular activities such as theater, horseback riding, art, and computer programming.

The Big Idea:
Birthday Books From Coco

Our unique Birthday Books From Coco program offers students at participating schools the opportunity to choose a new book on their own birthdays. In the 2017-2018 school year, our Birthday Books From Coco program will reach nearly 5,000 public school students at 10 different sites from Santa Cruz to Watsonville. More than 76 percent of the K-5 students we serve qualify for free or reduced lunch.

Birthday Books From Coco was honored in 2016 by a Santa Cruz County Civil Grand Jury report as one of six county, city and private groups making a difference. It was noted, “For many of these children it is the first book they have owned.”

Our Starlight students love participating in the Birthday Books From Coco program, and treasure the books that they are able to choose for themselves. This program clearly promotes literacy, and strengthens the idea that a book can be a gift. Our students are also inspired to learn about Coco, who serves not only as a role-model for reading, but also for participating in community service.

Denee Sereano Calvillo
Starlight Elementary School