Denver Actors Fund in Action: Beki Pineda

BEKI PINEDA. Photo by John Moore

‘The Denver Actors Fund’s volunteer angels stepped up and came through the way they always do.’

Aid recipient: Properties Director Beki Pineda, who will be given the Colorado Theatre Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award at the July 22 Henry Awards, has been an active member of the Colorado theatre community since the early 1980s. She started as a volunteer at the Bonfils Theatre on East Colfax Avenue before building her trade in properties for countless theater companies. Beki, who turns 80 on August 19, has worked on the making of 10 theatrical productions in the past year alone, most recently Vintage Theatre’s “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder” and Firehouse Theater’s “Outside Mullingar.” She is also the longtime Box Office Manager at Denver School of the Arts, where she has helped organize ongoing collections for The Denver Actors Fund.

Her medical story: We’ve been helping Beki in a couple of small ways over the past year, including buying her new eyeglasses ($325) and hooking her up with our partnering dentist, Brian Kelly DDS, for his help on a dental matter (a service valued at $182.) Beki’s world was rocked at the end of March when a fainting spell led to a breast-cancer diagnosis. She has since undergone surgery for successive mastectomies.

How we have helped Beki: As Beki recovered from surgery, Denver Actors Fund Volunteer Coordinator Kristen Samu arranged for a team to help Beki recover, starting with several weeks of meals delivered to her apartment and other assistance. Her out-of-pocket medical expenses to date have totaled $2,213, which The Denver Actors Fund has paid in full. To date, The Denver Actors Fund has now provided Beki with $2,720 in overall financial assistance for medical services.

How Beki has helped us: In addition to being a longtime monthly donor to The Denver Actors Fund, Beki is among our original and most steadfast Action Team volunteers. She played a vital role in helping us to transform actor Russell Costen’s low-income apartment while he was in the hospital recovering from lung-cancer surgery. When we put the call out for drivers to help actor Gregory Alan West, who needed long-term transportation to and from rehab appointments following heart and kidney transplants, Beki was one of three volunteers who drove Gregory three times a week for more than four months. And she was a primary helper when The Denver Actors Fund helped actor Abner Genece recuperate at home following a near-fatal car accident. In each case, the DAF beneficiary has been younger than Beki.

How you can help us help Beki more: At age 79 and coming off two major surgeries, Beki’s financial situation is at best, uncertain. If you would like to direct a specific donation to help give Beki some financial breathing room, simply mail checks in any amount made out to Denver Actors Fund (with Beki Pineda’s name written in the topic field), to P.O. Box 11182, Denver, CO, 80211. Or use this donation link. If you use the online option, be sure to designate that your donation is a targeted donation for Beki Pineda. (She will receive 100 percent of your donation.) Otherwise, your donation will be applied to the replenishment of The Denver Actors Fund’s general fund.

A message from Beki: “Words you pray you’ll never hear: ‘You have cancer.’ So casually spoken – so heartbreakingly heard. A few tears are allowed, and then you pull up your big-girl panties and say, ‘OK, let’s take care of this little problem.’ When my surgeon explained that the top half of my right breast was ‘fully engaged,’ I asked her if the bottom half was just dating? She responded with. ‘Oh, you’re going to be just fine.’ If you want to know the true definition of a village, try getting sick in this theatre community! Best friends, casual acquaintances and people from years past all rallied around to fill my fridge and offer rides. They called to check on me, share their experiences and send prayers. The Denver Actors Fund’s volunteer angels stepped up and came through the way they always do. What an amazing gift it has been to have The Denver Actors Fund on my side through this whole ordeal. I am so happy happy to report that the cancer is gone, with no need for chemo. Dr. Julie Barone literally saved my life by discovering a second cancer that didn’t show up on any of the tests and caught it before it could do any lasting damage. I feel I have been spared for a reason … maybe to help make The Denver Actors Fund stronger and more productive than ever. God bless you, everyone!”

The Denver Actors Fund has now made more than $366,000 available to Colorado artists in medical need.

Read testimonials from other Denver Actors Fund beneficiaries here

Note: At The Denver Actors Fund, anonymity of aid recipients is presumed and fully protected, unless and until the recipient chooses to have their story told.

Vintage Theatre Love and Murder

Beki Pineda designed props for Vintage Theatre’s recent ‘A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder.’


ABOUT THE DENVER ACTORS FUND:

The Denver Actors Fund is a modest source of immediate, situational relief when members of the local theater community find themselves in medical need. In addition to $366,000 in financial relief, a team of more than 60 Denver Actors Fund volunteers have offered good neighborly assistance to more than 100 beneficiaries including meal prep and delivery, child care, transportation, errands, construction, pet-sitting and more. For more information, visit our web site at DenverActorsFund.Org.


HOW TO APPLY FOR AID:

To apply for Denver Actors Fund aid: Fill out this brief online form here


MORE WAYS TO HELP:

DONATE ONLINE:

Go to our online giving site at: ColoradoGives.Org

DONATE BY MAIL:

Send checks made out to The Denver Actors Fund to:
P.O. Box 11182
Denver, CO 80211

VOLUNTEER:

Ever thought about taking a more active role in The Denver Actors Fund? Click here for more information

COME TO OUR EVENTS:
Friends, we at The Denver Actors Fund believe in building community while building funds. Most of our events are performative in nature so that you have a good time while helping a good cause. Here are some of the events that are currently being planned on our behalf. Visit denveractorsfund.org anytime for an updated list.

MISCAST 2019

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 30:Miscast,” which is presented each year by Robert Michael Sanders as a benefit for The Denver Actors Fund, is an opportunity for local performers to sing songs and act out scenes they would never … ever! … get cast to perform on any legit stage. Think gender-bending, race-bending and age-bending. Odd couples and mixed groups. Wrong is oh so right. “Miscast” has evolved over the years into one of the biggest nights of the year in the Colorado theatre community – and it is a really good show. “Miscast 2019” will be held Sept. 30 at a new location: The Aurora Fox Arts Center. Tickets will go on sale in August. In the meantime … Save the Date!

VISIT OUR ONLINE MERCH STORE:

Click here to see how you can buy DAF products such as T-shirts, key chains, puzzles and much more