SkateMD Healing Hearts

Reviewed by the Sacramento Region Community Foundation

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SkateMD is an all-volunteer, Northern California based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded by Melanie Tillotson (the "M") and Andrea "Drea" Bibelheimer (the "D").  Inspired by each other's personal passions and contributions to at-risk and special needs children, Melanie and Drea joined forces as "partners in kind" with a mission to heal hearts by spreading kindness and skateboarding to special populations of children facing developmental, physical, emotional, or family challenges.  The SkateMD program was created in 2014 as our heartfelt response to a viral video of a hate crime against a teenage boy with Autism.  As members of skateboarding families and strong advocates of kindness, Melanie and Drea set out to empower children with exercise, positive interactions, and fun while increasing tolerance, compassion, and support within the community.

Partnering from the onset with board members Heather Barclay and Erik Nielsen who share the same enthusiasm, we have been able to provide one-on-one skateboard clinics in an accepting environment for children ages 5-17 to experiment with skateboarding, to fine-tune existing skateboarding skills, or to just have fun.  In 2018, we expanded our board of directors to include Patrick Guild and we continue to recruit board committee members in order to increase our capacity as an organization.

Our program is proud to pay special attention to the individual needs of our participants.  Participant coordination is facilitated by our valued board member, Erik Nielsen (PT, DPT, PCS), a board-certified clinical specialist; additional volunteer therapists are recruited for our clinics to support both volunteers and children.  Each clinic also hosts approximately 70 amazing volunteers, 50-60 who are local area skateboarders.


SkateMD is a Northern California based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that aims to heal hearts by spreading kindness and skateboarding to children with physical and developmental disabilities. We serve children who may not otherwise be able to pursue skateboarding, don't have easy access to skateboard equipment or facilities, and/or those who just need some extra kindness in their lives.


SkateMD is funded 100% through individual and business donations. We rely on your support to provide our successful and sought-after skateboarding clinics. The program is operated and staffed by unpaid volunteers only and all donations go directly to the program to pay for the cost of the clinics including insurance, fees, equipment, supplies, as well as the costs of administering the program like software, marketing, and more.

We will also graciously accept in-kind donations of the following:

-Snacks, Lunch & Drinks for Event Day

-Skate Product and Giveaways

-Event T-Shirts and Other Printing

Equity Statement

Organization Data


Organization name

SkateMD Healing Hearts

other names


Year Established


Tax id (EIN)


Mission Category

Human Services

Operating Budget


Organization Need

Funding: Unrestricted, Board Members, In-Kind Donations, Volunteers

Demographics Served

Individuals with disabilities, Youth & Children, General population

Local Counties Served

Placer, Sacramento, Yolo


1870 Valley Vista Lane
Auburn, CA 95691

Service areas

Sacramento, CA, US

Auburn, CA, US

Rancho Cordova, CA, US

West Sacramento, CA, US

Napa, CA, US



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