Marion Witte

November 25, 2015

The Nutcracker – A New Experience for 25 Foster Children

Filed under: Foundation — admin @ 5:57 pm


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August 21, 2015

Angel Heart Foundation Summer Programs a Success!

Filed under: Foundation — Marion Witte @ 12:36 am

Foundation ALL Summer ProgramsThe Angel Heart Foundation completed its series of summer programs for youth living in Ventura County.

Children from the Oxnard Rio School District, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Ventura and the Assistance League Girls Club were treated to a live performance of The Little Mermaid, Jr. at the Rubicon Theater.  Click Here for Photos.

Goody bags were given to the migrant farmer worker children of Oxnard, in connection with Support for the Kids, as a reward for completing the summer school program at Hathaway Elementary School.  Click Here for Photos.

A Mad Hatter Party was held for the children of the Johnson Drive Boys and Girls Club – complete with crafts, face painting, costumes, root beer floats and take-away goody bags.  Click Here for Photos.

Young adults from the Boys and Girls Teens Club of Greater Ventura and the Boys and Girls Teen Club of Camarillo were invited to a live production of West Side Story at the Rubicon Theater in Ventura.  Click Here for Photos.

Thanks to everyone who made all of these events such a great success!

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August 6, 2015

Teens Enjoy a Youth Production of West Side Story

Filed under: Foundation — Marion Witte @ 1:04 am

The Rubicon Theatre presented an amazing student performance of West Side Story. This piece was so timely and pertinent, especially to the 60 teens we sponsored from the Boys and Girls Club of Saticoy, West Side Avenue, East Side Johnson Street and Boy and Girls of Camarillo.

See Photos of the Event!

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July 29, 2015

The Mad Hatter Gives a Party at the Boys and Girls Club

Filed under: Foundation — Marion Witte @ 12:50 am

We put on an “amazing” Mad Hatter Party at the Ventura Boys and Girls Club on Johnson Drive – complete with crafts, face painting, costumes, root beer floats and take-away goody bags. Not sure who had more fun – the kids or the volunteers.

See Photos of the Party!

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July 27, 2015

Migrant Farm Worker Children Rewarded for Program Completion

Filed under: Foundation — Marion Witte @ 10:38 pm

Hand-crafted goody bags were distributed to the migrant farmer worker children of Oxnard, in conjunction with the Support for the Kids organization, as a reward for completing the summer school program at Hathaway Elementary School in Port Hueneme.

Here are some photos of the day!

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July 1, 2015

Children See Live Production of “Little Mermaid” for the First Time

Filed under: Foundation — Marion Witte @ 12:09 am

Children from the Oxnard School District, the Assistance League Girls Club and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Ventura attended a special performance of Little Mermaid, Jr. at the Rubicon Theater.  It was the first time many of the children had ever witnessed a live production.

Some pictures from the day!

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June 30, 2015

Some Thoughts From Stewie

Filed under: Thoughts — Marion Witte @ 6:52 pm


Stewie's thoughtsI love taking a long walk around the neighborhood.  There are lots of different smells by the sidewalks, and even more in the park.  Plenty of places to pee and kids to watch on the playground.  And my favorite part is walking down to the shopping center – the smells from the restaurants are great, and sometimes there is a morsel or two of food on the ground.  If I am really quick, I can get it in my mouth before my Mom sees me.

The other day we were walking by the Ralphs super market, past the area with the outdoor tables and chairs for the employees to eat their meals.

There were a bunch of men sitting at the tables, and one of them came over to pet me.  His breathe smelled kind of funny – something I didn’t recognize.  Mom said it was alcohol.  (Note to self: Not my favorite odor).

I already knew these men were “homeless,” as my Mom and I had talked about this before.  She told me I had been homeless at one time, so I think I kind of relate to them.

One of the men came up to my Mom and asked what my name was and if he could pet me.  When someone asks about me, she always says the same thing – “His name is Jon Stewart, but I call him Stewie. He came off of the streets of West Los Angeles.”   And she always lets the “homeless” people pet me.  She told me once that sometimes that is the only act of kindness they get in a day.

This particular homeless man petted me, and then he stopped and looked at my Mom.  He said to her “Please don’t ever make fun of your dog, or call him names, or treat him badly.”  He went on to say “Cause I know what it is like to have people make fun of you and hurt your feelings.”

My Mom started to get tears in her eyes – like she does when she is watching a sad movie on television.  She turned to the man and said “That’s good advice, and thank you for sharing it with me.  It’s good to be reminded of these things.”

As we started to walk home, the same man yelled at us.  “Mam, you seem like a nice lady.  Would you like to be in a movie we are making?”

My mom stopped and asked what the name of the movie was going to be.  He said “The Outsiders.”  My Mom chuckled and said “You know, sometimes it’s good to be an outsider.”

As we were walking away, my Mom decided to stop and turn back to talk to the men one last time.  She said “Let me know when you start shooting that film – I would fit right in!”  We continued on walking, and I stopped to look back.

The man with the smelly breathe was smiling and crying at the same time.  I think they were “happy” tears.

This encounter made me do some dog-thinking (yes, dogs do think).

I don’t understand a lot of things about humans.

It seems to me that people are not so different from dogs.  It’s pretty simple – everyone wants to be loved and acknowledged.  We need to know that our existence is important, no matter what our circumstances.

I feel like a lucky little guy, yet sometimes I do feel bad that dogs are sometimes treated better than people.

Maybe the world would be a better place if everyone had a taste of homelessness, so they would appreciate what they have, and know what it’s like not to have anything.

But then what do I know.

I’m just a dog!


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Inside Out – A Must See Movie!

Filed under: Thoughts — Marion Witte @ 12:12 am


Inside Out

As a Court-Appointed Special Advocate, I see a lot of G-rated and PG movies with my foster kids.  Those adventures have become one of the unexpected rewards of this program.

Last week I had the pleasure of seeing “Inside Out” and I can truly say it is one of the most amazing movies I have seen in years.  It is one of those special creations that only Disney/Pixar can produce.  It is billed as appealing to children, and I can truly say, from my personal experience, that it spoke to that little girl still inside of me.

I went with a 10-year old foster girl, and we kept looking at each during the movie.  I think we were trying to see what feelings it was bringing up in each of us.  The movie centers on the issue that we all have a variety of emotions, and it is OK to acknowledge them.  The main characters are Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger and Disgust.

At the end of the movie, she asked me if I liked it, and I started to gush about it.  I posed the same question to her, and she smiled and replied that she also loved the movie.  I went on to ask which character she liked the best, and she responded “Sadness.”  I felt my own Sadness come up when I heard her words, until she went on to explain why.

She informed me that “I also liked Joy, but how can you know what Joy is, unless you know what Sadness is.”

I became totally speechless, for there is nothing an adult can add to these words of wisdom.

Kudos to the everyone at Disney for creating this educational, inspiring and conscious work of art.  See this movie and you will find out what I am talking about!




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November 3, 2014

Marion Witte Appointed as Ventura County Special Advocate

Filed under: Society — Marion Witte @ 5:41 pm


On November 3, 2014, Marion Witte of Ventura, California was inducted as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for the County of Ventura by Judge Bruce A. Young.  CASA is a unique non profit organization which recruits, screens and trains community volunteers to become the voices of children who find themselves in court through no fault of their own.

Ventura County CASA has existed since 1985, when a group of concerned judges, attorneys and community members felt that objective, caring support for these children was necessary during court proceedings and during out of home placement. The CASA advocate, as an officer of the court, is the eyes and ears of the court, reporting the child’s progress and needs to the judge and the attorneys.


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October 20, 2014

Marion Witte Honored by the Ventura County Star for Community Service

Filed under: Foundation — Marion Witte @ 7:37 pm

Ventura Star Award

The annual 25 over 50 Awards Program salutes Ventura County’s accomplished and exceptional leaders who continue to leave an imprint on our thriving community through their achievements, leadership abilities, philanthropic efforts, and dedication to the betterment of Ventura County.

The following biographical information was published in the Ventura County Star on Sunday, October 19, 2014.

Marion Elizabeth Witte is sometimes also referred to as “the lady who buys out the entire house.” During the holidays, Marion often will purchase tickets for a local community production in order to offer underprivileged children the opportunity to enjoy live theater. Not only does this offer some entertainment for needy families in the community, but it also greatly benefits the local theater community. Marion is tirelessly focused on her commitment to making a difference in the lives of disadvantaged children and families, founding and managing the Angel Heart Foundation, whose vision is that “All Children Deserve a Safe and Just World.” She serves as the editor-in-chief of the foundation’s two sister websites – Next Generation Parenting and Brave New Leaders, which are devoted to encouraging positive parenting and empowering youth. Marion is training to become a Court Appointed Special Advocate and is developing a self-esteem program for the Boys & Girls Club of Ventura. She is also an active, trained volunteer for Junior Achievement and has volunteered for Girls, Inc. and Big Brothers Big Sisters.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? I enjoy traveling and experiencing world cultures. My recent trips include journeys to Peru, Australia and New Zealand. Where and when were you happiest? When I am able to touch the life of a child and provide them with hope for the future. What book is sitting on your nightstand? “I Hope I Wake Up in the Morning.” Where is your favorite place to take visitors? Downtown Ventura, Serra Cross at Grant Park and McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream & Yogurt! What is your all-time favorite movie? “Fried Green Tomatoes” with Kathy Bates as Towanda – it’s on my license plate. What “group” did you hang out with in high school? An eclectic group of folks—the “nice” girls and the nerds. My favorite group was the “bad boys.” What chore do you absolutely hate doing? I don’t like scrubbing floors for some reason. What does Ventura County need? The same things as the world — more innovation and creative thinking. Which word or phrase do you most overuse? Wow! What was your worst Job? Hoeing sugar beets for eight hours a day in North Dakota in 100-degree temperatures at age 16. And earning $1 for each mile-long row completed. What Is your favorite invention? The toilet. What is your greatest fear? Not having a toilet. What are you most proud of accomplishing? I am proud of the wonderful woman my beloved daughter has grown to be. What is your biggest pet peeve? Narcissism. If you could learn to do anything, what would it be? Speak a foreign language and ballroom dance (I know, it’s never too late). What did you do growing up that got you Into trouble? Pretty much everything — drinking, carousing, missing school, basic delinquency. If you could paint a picture of anything, what would you paint? The south island of New Zealand where “Lord of the Rings” was filmed. What is your most treasured possession? My lovely little rescue Shih Tzu, Jon Stewart Witte (aka Stewie). What do you most value in your friends? Being real. Being honest. Being loyal. What is your motto? It’s not the truth that will hurt you — it’s the lies.

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