About us

Who we are

The Peaceful World Foundation was founded by the late Sami Sunchild and established in 2006. Sami’s mission was to foster a culture of global peace through the promotion of hosted conversations, the arts, and mindful education.

Today the Peaceful World Foundation strives to carry on her vision of mindful conversations while supporting, assisting, and encouraging organizations and communities in their peace building efforts.

Our charitable goal is to promote peace by supporting nonprofit organizations in their peace building efforts in the field of the arts and mindful education. We seek to fund peacebuilding programs which align to our mission and requesting an amount between $5,000-$20,000.

The Foundation however does not provide ongoing support. The Foundation only funds programs twice within a five-year period, upon submission and receipt of a financial summary.

Our founder

Our founder

(1924 – 2013)
“Let peace begin with me and spread out from this place”


The Foundation is primarily interested in Bay Area programs within the following nine counties:

  • San Francisco
  • San Mateo
  • Santa Clara
  • Alameda
  • Contra Costa
  • Marin
  • Sonoma
  • Solano
  • Napa

The Board wishes to remain flexible but does not encourage proposals outside these program areas.

Preference will be given to organizations founded and based in the Bay Area (as opposed to national organizations).

Note: All programs seeking funding are encouraged to meet our community peace building component in addition to an art or mindful education component.



The Foundation aspires to collaborate with organizations in their community-based peace building efforts and fund programs which embrace any of the following practices within an art or mindful education program:

  • Encouraging ecologically sustainable practices
  • Innovative healing tools for community peace-making
  • Participatory approaches to mindful leadership and community building


The Foundation is interested in art programs that build on global peace and social consciousness through visual and media art, music, and the performing arts. We are particularly invested in supporting art programs that contribute to:

  • World Peace
  • Diversity
  • Integration
  • Inner Peace


The Foundation seeks to fund mindful educational and well-being programs that promote any of the following:

  • Cultivating attention, compassion, and well-being across all peoples and ages
  • Alternative methods to manage stress and increase inner awareness

How we Collaborate with our Grantees

The Peaceful World Foundation fosters an understanding of our grantees’ work by cultivating relationships and bridging the gaps of networking. We bring together our grantees and local community members at our hosted peaceful world conversations and events.

Cultivating Relationships

Bridging the gaps of networking

Peaceful world Conversations

Sharing life’s journeys with others


Coming together in celebration

2020 Grant Cycle Closed

Our team

Heidi L. Majano, MA
Executive Director

Driven by a passion for promoting and implementing mindful practices of communication, Heidi has developed and deepened her skills in listening, encouraging, and mentoring. Her role as the Executive Director at the Peaceful World Foundation embraces her talents in strategic peace building through the channels of mindful networking, organizational development and relationship building.

Having worked closely with Sami Sunchild, the founder of the Peaceful World Foundation, Heidi has brought Sami’s legacy into manifestation with the close council of the Foundation’s Board and collaborators …

Read more:
Heidi Majano, MA Executive Director

Marcus L. Penn, MD
Program Facilitator

Marcus Lorenzo Penn, MD, CYT brings over 14 years of experience working with diverse populations as a holistic health and wellness consultant, coach and facilitator. Dr. Penn received his M.D. degree from Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, D.C. with postgraduate medical training at Alameda County Medical Center Highland Hospital in Oakland, CA.

Certified in Raja and Hatha yoga from the Niroga Institute in Berkeley, CA and founder of Self Care Reform Wellness, his role as the Program Facilitator highlights his strong desire to engage with people. By listening and sharing information about novel practices that support living a healthier and more peaceful life, Marcus brings a quality of collectiveness to the peaceful world conversations …

Read more:
Marcus Lorenzo Penn, MD Program Facilitator

Raymond Krein

Raymond arrived at the foundation as a financial support team member in 2013. He finds peace when riding his motorcycle and enjoying a walk along the streets of San Francisco with his lovely wife, Michelle.

Tamara Gomez
Dignitary and Board Member

Tamara, the granddaughter of Sami, resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico with her husband and four children. She is a registered member of the Oglala Sioux tribe and has lived in New Mexico since 1998. Her passion in life has always been to help others. Tamara has been a registered nurse since 2009. She currently serves as the Nurse Clinic manager for First Nations Community Health Source, a nonprofit organization which serves Native American/Alaskan Native families and other underserved populations residing in Albuquerque and surrounding areas.

She is influenced by her grandmother’s work of creating a peaceful world by taking an active role in helping her community and making a difference for a better tomorrow.

Duane R. Menting
Chief Financial Officer
and Board Member

Duane R. Menting lives and works as a lawyer in Larkspur, California. He comes to Peaceful World Foundation as Sami Sunchild’s friend and lawyer for near 20 years.

“My goal is to have Sami’s good work live on, promoting peace for the planet.”

Dave Whitridge
Chief Executive Officer
and Board Member

Dave Whitridge has lived in the Bay area since 1960, attended college on the east coast and law school in San Francisco. After retiring from practicing law and banking in 2007, he began attending and helping Sami Sunchild organize Peaceful World Conversations at her Red Victorian Bed and Breakfast on Haight Street. He joined the Board of the Peaceful World Foundation prior to Sami’s death in 2013.

Dave is somewhat conversant in French and German but prefers conversations in his native English. He lives in Marin and is also involved in several other volunteer and non-profit activities.


Elia Pochron
Peace Festival
Elizabeth Padilla
Peace Festival
Brandon Mendiola
Peace Festival
Brain Choi & Kitty Peters
Visual Media Support
Greg Pilch / Impet Group
Design and Marketing Support
Genesis Barazza
Digital Media Support

Cultivating Relationships

We foster an understanding of our grantees’ work by cultivating relationships and bridging the gaps of networking.