The purpose of the Salvador Fund is to honor the memory of Salvador Castañares by offering small grants ($250 to $3,500) to benefit low-income people in the mid-Columbia region of Oregon and Washington. The grant committee will consider applications from nonprofit groups from any sector seeking financial support for programs, projects, or events that fit the criteria in the grant guidelines which are available here –  Guidelines 2024   The submission process is open and grant requests will be accepted at any time.  Please note that grant guidelines were updated in March 2024.

Salvador Castañares

Salvador Castañares, born in Monterrey, Mexico in 1908, immigrated to the United States alone in 1923 and died in Los Angeles in 2005.  His professional life was one of hardworking medical service, as a general surgeon and later a specialist in plastic and reconstructive surgery. He volunteered for military service in the US Army Air Corps during WWII and was a flight surgeon.  He married Doris Thurber in 1941.  They settled in Los Salvador and dogAngeles and raised three children there:  Tony, Dennis and Tina Castañares.

In 1984 Tina and her husband Paul moved to Hood River, where she practiced medicine for over 30 years, chiefly with Mexican immigrants and other underserved groups. After Salvador’s death, Doris Castañares moved to Hood River to live with Tina and Paul.  Doris became quickly involved in many volunteer activities.  In 2012, Dennis and his wife Jana retired and moved to Hood River as well, volunteering their time and talent in music, theatre and education.  Tony and his wife Kris have long been regular visitors to the area.

Thus, of the Castañares family, only Salvador lacked the opportunity to participate in the life of the Mid-Columbia region.  In 2016, Tina established the Salvador Fund to enable him, albeit posthumously, to strengthen the health and vibrancy of an area which had come to mean so much to his wife and children.