To aid college students living with serious illness and injury, so that they may continue working toward their educational goals. Each year we provide grants for uncovered medical costs, medical technology, educational costs and living expenses.


The Orion Fund’s mission is to award grants to California college students facing serious health crises to assist them in completing their educational goals. We are a volunteer organization established as a legacy of Orion Trott, a U.C. San Diego student who died from cancer at the age of 21. Friends and family members gathered together in Orion’s memory, raising funds to start The Orion Fund in 2004. Our big fundraiser is our golf tournament in Napa Valley each October. We also appreciate the steady support of the communities and friends around us who have kept The Orion Fund open for students throughout the past ten years. With only volunteer staff and no overhead, almost 100% of donations go directly to our college students.

We serve college students under the age of thirty who are facing a serious health crisis. Previous grantees have included students suffering from cancer, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, catastrophic injury due to violent acts or accidents and immunological disorders. We ask for grantees to submit proof of current college enrollment, financial need and verification of medical condition. These young adults “fall through the cracks” - being beyond pediatrics but not yet self-supporting and there are often no other sources of assistance.

This year, once again, was our largest grant pool, in both number of applicants and award amounts. We received over 40 applications from UCs, state universities and junior colleges statewide. We were able to provide grants to students with challenges such as traumatic injury, cancer, and rheumatoid arthritis… covering medical, educational and living costs.

We at The Orion Fund are inspired by the courage and strength of our grantees as they strive to continue their studies in the face of serious health challenges. Our grants not only relieve their financial burden, but let these students know we acknowledge their tremendous efforts.