“Preserve a Home” program offers a hand-up to 12 VC homeowners

Together, Habitat for Humanity volunteers, neighborhood residents, and local businesses and cities are changing the face of neighborhoods and the lives of the families who live there. 

Since Habitat for Humanity of Ventura County launched its Preserve a Home program in 2011, 12 home preservations have been completed in Ventura County; five “Brush with Kindness” projects, five minor repairs, and two major repairs. The homes are located in Camarillo, Fillmore, Oxnard, Piru, Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, and Ventura.  Following the well-established Habitat for Humanity model, homeowners and family members contribute Sweat Equity hours and work in partnership with Habitat staff and volunteers.  The following homes were the first to be worked on in the Preserve a Home program.

Rose Mary Nastasi – Piru
The exterior of Rose Mary’s home received some TLC thanks to a group of passionate and dedicated volunteers. On day one of “A Brush with Kindness”, Pastor Marty Milligan and volunteers from Christian Church braved a very hot July day as they removed weeds, dug a trench, installed a new drain, spread mulch, and prepped the house for paint. The following day, the hot weather returned as did the volunteers from Christian Church, along with new volunteers from Intuit. Demetrio Silva and Noe Saravia, Habitat for Humanity homeowners, cooked and served a delicious “carne asada” lunch for the homeowner and volunteers! Helping people repair and maintain their homes aligns with our core mission of making decent, affordable housing available to families in need.

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Kathy Vargas, Fillmore 

Kathy Vargas, a self-employed woman with limited income, has been caring for her elderly mother in a very small home in Fillmore. Her exterior siding was in need of repair and paint, major clean up was needed in the backyard, along with minor landscaping work in the front yard. Through Habitat’s “A Brush with Kindness” program, Kathy and her mother worked side-by-side with volunteers, completing the majority of the yard clean up. Volunteers from the Moorpark Women’s Fortnightly Club and CLEAR group sanded and scraped old paint off the walls to prepare for a fresh coat of paint.  Volunteers from CLEAR, Pepperdine, and Habitat’s Wednesday Crew completed the landscape work. A very special thank you to Kathy’s neighbors who donated pavers and roof flashing material for the cause.


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Donna Steele , Thousand Oaks 

Dona is a retired, single homeowner, and mother of four adult children.  She is also a two-time cancer survivor with limited mobility.  When Donna was referred to Habitat by Senior Concerns of Thousand Oaks, the house was in need of substantial landscaping, yard clean up, and minor exterior repairs.  Volunteers removed weeds, bushes and hedges were trimmed, the front lawn was mowed, and a broken sprinkler system was replaced.  A fresh coat of blacktop was also poured over the worn driveway.  As part of “Serve Day” at California Lutheran University, CLU students completed all landscape work.  The home was prepped and primed for paint thanks to a group of regular volunteers as well as the CLEAR group.  Volunteers from the Delta Tau Delta Fraternity, the Pepperdine Women of Public Policy, and Faith Lutheran Church dug in and finished the remaining work.


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CLU students lend a hand!