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A Publication of San Gabriel Valley Habitat for Humanity | Issue 6.6

June 2013

Small Bites for Big Dreams Raises Over $33,000! INSIDE PAGE 2 Message from Board President Small Bites for Big Dreams Raises Over $33,000 (Cover story continued) PAGE 3 Youth in Action A Brush with Kindness, Temple City New Employees PAGE 4 Congratulations, Jon!

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(L-R) SGV Habitat Executive Director Sonja Yates, Rouchka Family Representative Bill Browne and Assemblymember Ed Chau

The fundraising goal for Desiderio is closer thanks to the successful 2013 Small Bites for Big Dreams Fundraiser! On Sunday, May 19th, over 300 generous supporters gathered at the University Club in Pasadena to celebrate the work of San Gabriel Valley Habitat. The event generated over $33,000, all of which is designated for the highly anticipated Desiderio Build in Pasadena. Attendees sampled a wide variety of delectable food and drink while listening to live musical entertainment provided by Jennifer Dyer and Friends. Special thanks go to Jim Babcock and Denise Villalovos. Jim, the event MC, did an excellent job in engaging guests throughout the event with his humor and vivaciousness. Denise, Small Bites auction chair, organized the smoothly run silent and live auctions that produced strong results for the Desiderio cause. In addition to the food, entertainment, and auctions, Greg and Gia Alparaz, SGV Habitat homeowners, shared their journey and experiences to homeownership with the audience. Small Bites guests listened as this couple shared how the opportunities SGV Habitat provided them have impacted the lives of each of their family members.

SGV Habitat posthumously recognized Charles Rouchka, an extraordinary benefactor whose contribution will enable three of the nine homes at Desiderio to be designated for veterans and their families. Rouchka family representative, Bill Browne, was in attendance to receive a

Thanks to long-time supporter, Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, Pasadena, CA.

A Message from the President Board of Directors Nicolas Alparaz, Gregory Barsamian, Thomas S. Bunn III, Ann Dougherty, Donald W. Goodman, George Hernandez, John Mac Lean, Paul McAnnally-Linz, Andrew Pittroff, David Reaume, Herb Rim, Elaine Wilkerson Staff Sonja L. Yates, Executive Director Damien Allen, Director of Construction Sayaka Ota, Accountant Catalina Velez, Office Manager Elizabeth Ramirez, Fund Development Coordinator Marty McBride, Volunteer & Family Services Coordinator Linda Bermudez, Faith Relations and Youth Coordinator Steve Solis, Marketing & Social Media Coordinator ReStores Bill Anderson, Director of ReStores Eric Bridges, Azusa ReStore Manager Micah Hillis, Pasadena ReStore Manager Matt Vincent, Azusa Restore Assistant Manager Brittné Anderson, Restore Admin Assistant Walter Rea Jr., Driver Craig Chew, Sales Associate Manny Flores, Sales Associate Erik Kristiansen, Sales Associate Don Meeker, Sales Associate Phillip Pasos, Sales Associate Josh Rosa, Sales Associate Michael Springs, Sales Associate Jon Henning, Sales Associate Brian Ewing, Sales Associate Carlos Hernandez, Sales Associate

Dear Friends of San Gabriel Valley Habitat for Humanity, We continue to be so blessed at San Gabriel Valley Habitat for Humanity! On Sunday, May 19, 2013, we were fortunate to have over 300 supporters attending the Small Bites for Big Dreams event at the University Club in Pasadena. The venue was perfect, the food and drink donated by our sponsors was fantastic, and we enjoyed live music and lively bidding on the silent and live auctions. What a wonderful event! We raised over $33,000 for the Desiderio Homes. I want to thank our event chair, Diana Rafeedie-Nofal, and her committee for all their dedication and hard work to make this event a great success! At the event, we were able to recognize posthumously one of our generous benefactors—Mr. Charles Rouchka, who donated his home to our affiliate to be used for the benefit of veterans. Mr. Rouchka was represented by his nephew, who accepted the

plaque inducting him into our Legacy Society. We also are in escrow to sell an apartment building which was acquired by JP Morgan Chase Bank in foreclosure and was generously donated to our affiliate. This sale is expected to generate $640,000 towards one of our next builds. Stay tuned for more great news that will allow us to expeditiously pursue a three-home build in Glendale that can be started prior to beginning the build at Desiderio. There is such a need for affordable housing in our area, and our goal is to be constantly building. With the generous support we have been receiving, that goal is soon to be a reality! Very truly yours,

Don Goodman Board President

(Cover Story Continued) plaque honoring the gift of their uncle’s home and celebrating his induction into the affiliate’s Legacy Society. The Rouchka family presented SGV Habitat with photos commemorating their uncle’s 22-year naval career and his burial flag.

Diana Rafeedie-Nofal, Chairwoman for the second year of Small Bites for Big Dreams, is a staunch and able ambassador for SGV Habitat’s affordable housing cause.

(City of Pasadena) Mayor Bill Bogaard, Diana Rafeedie-Nofal (Event Chair) and Sonja Yates (SGV Habitat Executive Director)

Great Music provided by Jennifer Dyer and Friends

Delicious food! Special thanks to StoneFire Grill

Angel and Jeff Throop

Her enthusiasm, commitment, organization and hard work, together with tireless efforts from the Small Bites Committee, truly paid off. The event was lauded by attendees and the Board of Directors. SGV Habitat sends a big THANK YOU to Diana and her committee for all of the time they invested to make this event a huge success!

To view more photos from our event, visit our “Events: Small Bites for Big Dreams” photo album on Facebook at

Youth in Action at SGV Habitat Youth United will kick off the summer and welcome new members with a Cars for Homes door hanger campaign in La Cañada. Cars for Homes is a nationwide initiative to transform vehicles that are idle or no longer needed into dollars to build and repair affordable homes. From September through October, Youth United will lead a Houses for Hope campaign.

Participating schools will compete in a loose change drive for the chance to star in the next SGV Youth United YouTube Video. Youth United leaders ambitiously set the goal to have 25 participating schools at the next Shantytown event. Planned for March 2014, the students envision an event overflowing with participants and excitement. They hope that their combined experiences at previous Shantytown events will help make the 2014 Shantytown even more successful. Another goal of the Youth United committee is to diversify its leadership board with representation from youth throughout the affiliate’s 31-community service area. At the recent planning session, Youth United gave a warm welcome their new Youth Programs Coordinator Linda Bermudez, reflected upon past activities and created goals for the remainder of 2013. Youth United grows Habitat for Humanity’s future leaders!

Temple City Brush With Kindness SGV Habitat is happy to announce the second Brush With Kindness (BWK) project jointly sponsored by Temple City and SGV Habitat. About the Program: Habitat for Humanity’s Brush With Kindness (BWK) is a locally-operated program serving low-income homeowners who struggle to maintain the exterior of their homes. The program assists communities as well as families and neighborhoods. How We Do It: • Groups of volunteers help homeowners with exterior maintenance. This typically includes painting, minor exterior repairs, landscaping, weatherization and exterior clean-up • Habitat selects partner families based on income, need and willingness to partner • In addition to volunteers, Habitat uses donated materials and makes no profit • Temple City has approved funding to be used to help six (6) qualified, low income homeowners to improve the exteriors of their homes Eligibility • Applicants must be low-income homeowners in Temple City • Household income must be no more than 80% of Area Median Income per HUD 2013 guidelines • Homes must be owner-occupied • Applicants must complete and submit the Repair Program Application • Scope of work must match project & program resources (up to $6,000 per BWK project)

• All able-bodied homeowners and residents of the home are required to work alongside volunteers • Homeowners are expected to be cooperative partners with San Gabriel Valley Habitat for Humanity staff and volunteers Applications are available at and Eligible families must apply by June 30, 2013 Income Limits: 1 person household . .......................... $46,400 2 person household . .......................... $53,000 3 person household . .......................... $59,650 4 person household . .......................... $66,250 5 person household . .......................... $71,550 6 person household . .......................... $76,850 7 person household . .......................... $82,150 8 person household . .......................... $87,450 Results: • Helps families to live in safe and wellmaintained homes • Keeps homeowners in their homes and protects their financial investments • Restores the homeowners dignity and pride of homeownership Why It Matters: The program is designed to revitalize the appearance of the neighborhood, encourage connections within the community, and most importantly, help preserve affordable housing stock. For more information, email Damien Allen at or call 626-387-6899.

Welcome to New Employees Elizabeth Ramirez Liz, part-time Fund Development Coordinator & Grant Writer, joined our team in February. A native to the San Gabriel Valley, she has been involved with many civic organizations, with responsibilities for fundraising and planning and implementing community events. Liz currently works part-time at a masonry construction company and brings to Habitat a rich background in project management and community relations. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Business from Whittier College and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of La Verne. She has always had a passion for volunteering in the community and is an avid believer that everyone has a responsibility to help shape strong communities. A huge fan of outdoor activities, Liz can be found scuba diving near Catalina Island or hiking in our local mountains when she has free time. Linda Bermudez Linda, part-time Faith Relations and Youth Programs Coordinator, joined our team in April. She is a graduate of UCLA and is currently enrolled at USC as a graduate student, studying for her Master’s in Public Administration. Linda is excited to use her skills here at San Gabriel Valley Habitat to strengthen relationships with our current faith-based partners as well creating new ones. She is already building a core of students for next year’s Youth United Leadership Committee. Linda is actively involved in the political community in her hometown of Azusa. She aspires to “Be the Change,” is passionate about educational issues and loves to motivate youth to become civically engaged. Aside from her social work and community involvement, Linda enjoys the life of fitness—running, hiking and spending time enjoying nature.

Congratulations, Jon!

Photos: (L) Proud Habitat homeowner, Saundra Crockett celebrates with her son, Jon. (R) Saundra and Jon pictured with his family following graduation ceremonies

Congratulations to Jon Arnold, son of Saundra Crockett who purchased her Habitat home in 2010. Jon graduated from Glendale High School on June 4, 2013. Pictured above in his cap and gown, Jon is proudly wearing a medal that he earned for completion of Glendale High School’s “Construction Academy,” a construction training program designed for young people who like to use their hands to create projects. Jon plans are to serve our country by

enlisting in the Air Force and joining the Security Forces Pararescue Trainee Program. Jon’s mother acknowledges that San Gabriel Valley Habitat played a big role in supporting her son, “Moving into a Habitat home was a huge transition in a positive way. We were living in a cramped apartment and Jon had little space to do homework and read. We didn’t even have a dining area where we could have dinner together.” A single mom of four kids, Saundra also didn’t have the

San Gabriel Valley Habitat for Humanity, Inc. 400 South Irwindale Avenue Azusa, CA 91702

2013 June Newsletter Your donation today will help a Habitat family tomorrow!

Please email us so we can update your e-mail for our mailing list: Habitat Builder is published bi-monthly by San Gabriel Valley Habitat for Humanity Inc. 400 S Irwindale Ave., Azusa, CA 91702. Periodicals Postage Paid at Pasadena, CA. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to SGV Habitat for Humanity, 400 S Irwindale Ave., Azusa, CA 91702. Tel: 626-387-6899 Fax: 626-387-6890

support of community living at her former apartment complex. All of that changed when she and her family moved into their new Habitat home. “Jon was able to have his own bedroom!” Saundra said excitedly. “That was a huge positive change in Jon’s life since he lived with two women, his little sister and me.” Back during the construction of their new home, Saundra and her family made friends with many amazing volunteers that she and her family still keep in touch with today. During that time, Saundra and Jon also got to meet their new neighbors. “They’ve been a real blessing,” Saundra shared. This sense of community gave Saundra and Jon and the rest of their family support for personal, educational and career goals. New graduate Jon still has some testing and interviews to complete before he enters military service. He is keeping in touch with his recruiter and is ready to serve our country. Please keep Jon in your thoughts and prayers as he takes these significant new steps into adulthood.

Habitat Builder Newsletter - June 2013