“At Kinko’s, I asked my coworkers to stay healthy and productive by maintaining a balanced tripod of work, love, and play. The tripod for children is a little different, but no less important: kids need a balance of cognitive, social-emotional, and physical development for healthy brains, bodies, and spirits.

We want the community to remember that a whole child attends school each day, not just the test-taking parts. Students need physical activity, healthy nutrition, life-skills education (such as financial literacy), and appreciation as unique individuals to grow into well-balanced, productive adults. Whole children become whole adults who build whole communities.” – Paul Orfalea

The Whole Child

Whole Child • Whole Adult • Whole Community

From 2000 through 2015, Orfalea’s philanthropic activities were concentrated through The Orfalea Foundation. While the family supported a wide range of community needs, it focused its resources on Education, Youth Development, Early Childhood Education, School Food Reform, and Community Disaster Preparedness.

Today, Paul prefers to give anonymously, primarily devoted to organizations near Santa Barbara, California supporting Whole Child Development – recognizing that a child’s academic achievements and future success benefit from environments that promote physical activity, health & nutrition, and financial literacy. For example, research shows that students who ride bikes and swim are better at reading and math, so Paul supports programs that help low-income children learn these skills. He is also concerned about the rampant rise of diabetes in America, particularly among low-income children and children of color. “American kids now have a 1 in 3 chance of contracting diabetes, and for Black and Hispanic kids it’s a fifty percent chance. Doing nothing is NOT an option.” 

“I don’t see a great distinction between business and philanthropy – it’s all about creating and delivering something helpful to others."