We help kids in Santa Cruz County to grow up healthy and with opportunities to pursue their dreams. Our foundation is inspired by Coco Lazenby, who was killed in a car accident in 2015 at age 12. We work to provide local children with opportunities that made a difference in her life.
In 2021, we gave out more than 14,000 books to local public schools and community programs serving low-income families. We funded scholarships, hosted beach cleanups, placed little free libraries in our local parks, and made donations to other nonprofits, such as the Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Library and Starlight Elementary School.
As we’ve connected with public school librarians, we began dreaming of a fund these literacy experts could use to encourage reading — and beautify their spaces to enhance the reading experience for kids.
Librarians could pay for author visits, a new collection of graphic novels, or even a new mural. This fund would also be for our public libraries, including the Children’s Memorial Reading Garden at the Aptos branch of the Santa Cruz Public Library (we pledged to donate $70,000 to it by 2024).
Live Oak School students get so excited on their birthdays when they get to choose a book from Live Like Coco's donated collection. It is fun to watch them thumb through books to find the just right one. We celebrate Coco by sharing her life story to inspire our students to be readers and encourage volunteerism in our school community and beyond.
Diana Susoy, Live Oak School "Library Dragon”