San Manuel Band of Mission Indians Community Center

For more than two decades, the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has made generous contributions to nonprofits and government agencies to make a difference in their surrounding communities and Indian Country. Below are some highlights of our charitable giving efforts.

Team Members Take on National Volunteer Month

This April, team members joined the Children’s Assessment Center in making over 150 blankets for children undergoing child abuse evaluations. The activity began during Day of Giving at Yaamava’ on April 19 and continued on several days for National Volunteer Month.

Children’s Assessment Center is a collaboration between San Bernardino County and Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital that conducts forensic interviews and medical examinations to assist in the evaluation of child abuse allegations. During these evaluations children are sometimes present for long hours without their families (oftentimes allegations are made against the families). Blankets are provided for extra comfort along with food, hygiene items, and toys.

Team members spent 163.5 hours engaging in various activities with their departments and donating their own time to several additional organizations including Angels Closet Charities Donations, Life Stream, Feeding America Riverside and San Bernardino, and the Belvedere and Amber Hills communities.

Yuhaaviatam Center for Health Studies Grand Opening

The Yuhaaviatam Center for Health Studies at Claremont Graduate University (CGU) held its grand opening on May 11 after receiving one of the largest gifts in its nearly 100-year history. The former Huntley Bookstore building was converted into this innovative, multi-disciplinary health research center rooted in a health and well-being initiative. Its Serrano name translates to “people of the pines,” which refers to the original inhabitants of the Tribe’s ancestors. It will facilitate collaboration among CGU researchers, scientists and outside partners to address challenges within underserved populations of the Inland Empire and Indian Country.

Making a Difference for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons


On May 6, 2023, the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians’ Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons (MMIP) advocacy group held its first annual 5K walk/run at Cal State San Bernardino to bring awareness to the epidemic of violence and injustice that indigenous people face. Murder is the third highest cause of death among American Indian and Alaskan Native women, and 82% of indigenous men are victims of violence in their lifetime. 

The event—held during MMIP Awareness Month and a day after Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Day—raised funds to support the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women and Strong Hearted Native Women’s Coalition, Inc., two organizations that advocate for native communities.

San Manuel Helps to Grant Children’s Wishes

The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians’ $375,000 grant to the Make-A-Wish Orange County and Inland Empire will allow about 50 Inland Empire critically ill children to have their wishes come true. On Saturday, April 29—World Wish Day—the Tribe presented a check to the Make-a-Wish Orange County and Inland Empire at the 66ers Stadium. That same evening, a Make-a-Wish child was able to enjoy an evening at the ballpark with family in the San Manuel suite at the stadium.

The grant will support the chapter’s Wish Granting program. Currently, there are over 350 critically ill children in the Inland Empire waiting for their wishes to be granted. The organization’s goal is to replace a child’s fear with confidence, sadness with joy, and anxiety with hope through this program.

This wish experience contributes substantially to the physical, mental, and emotional health of these children and aligns with San Manuel’s commitment to partner with community nonprofits, Native-led organizations, and local agencies that promote wellness and resilience within communities. The grant will also support the onboarding of a community outreach director, who will help tell the Make-a-Wish story throughout the Inland Empire to help raise awareness, fundraise and build future partnerships.

SMBMI Awards Grants to Four San Bernardino County Agencies

The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians recently awarded grants to four local agencies working to improve community spaces and facilities near the Serrano ancestral territory and Reservation.

In December 2022, the Tribe granted $1 million to the Running Springs Fire Department for a new fire engine, as well as another $1 million to the city of San Bernardino in October 2022 to help renovate Speicher Park, including ADA restroom improvements, artificial turf additions to the ballfield and new scoreboard installation.

Additionally, SMBMI granted $725,000 in September 2022 to the San Bernardino County Fire Protection for a fire bulldozer and trailer and $260,000 to the city of Highland for a joint fire-training facility in March 2023. These grants were dedicated to community public safety efforts and well-being as well as enhancing overall conditions for fellow surrounding communities.