SILVAR past president and PRDS President Mark Burns, Charitable Foundation trustee Carolyn Miller and WVCS executive director Naomi Nakano-Matsumoto display the big check $2,000 to West Valley Community Services (WVCS).

This week, the Silicon Valley REALTORS® Charitable Foundation presented $2,000 to West Valley Community Services, a private non-profit, community-based agency that provides direct assistance and referral services to over 6,000 individuals and families annually in the communities of Cupertino, Los Gatos, Monte Sereno, Saratoga, West San Jose and the unincorporated mountain regions.

Receiving the check from Charitable Foundation Trustee Carolyn Miller, Naiomi Nakano-Matsumoto, executive director of West Valley Community Services (WVCS), thanked SILVAR members. She said the 2011 Homeless Point in Time survey has indicated an estimated 7,042 individuals are experiencing homelessness in Santa Clara County each night. While there are some signs the economy is improving, it doesn’t appear that way for some individuals and families, according to Nakano-Matsumoto.

Nakano-Matsumoto said the Charitable Foundation grant will support the WVCS Comprehensive Emergency Assistance Program (CEAP), a program which provides one-time financial assistance to prevent homelessness, hunger and utility disconnection for individuals and families experiencing unexpected financial setbacks.

WVCS also has the Haven to Home program, which provides supportive services and stable housing to homeless individuals and families; 30 homeless persons have been moved to permanent housing. The WVCS Transitional Housing Program houses 12 homeless men and six single mothers with a child. The program provides them with skills so they can secure permanent housing, find and maintain employment, and enhance income opportunity. WVCS likewise owns and operates Vista Village Apartments Complex, a permanent housing for low-income households.

Nakano-Matsumoto said the agency is in great need of volunteers to pick up, carry, as well as distribute food to the homeless. She added that they are short on food items. She said Second Harvest Food Bank, one of the groups with whom WVCS partners, is low on food items, so the agency has had to seek other partnerships to support its food program. 

“It is such a rewarding feeling for all of our District members to be able to share with others in and around our local community. Naomi always fills us in as to where the money will be going. . . .always to great causes. We are so happy we’re able to send consistent contributions to this worthy cause,” Miller, who also serves as SILVAR’s 2012 president-elect.

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