PVShelter.org | News & Events

Current News & Events

PV Shelter generally publishes a newsletter three times a year (Spring, Summer, and Fall). It is one of our communication tools to inform the community about the activities of our agency.

To view the Spring 2014 Newsletter click on the "Download" link to the right.

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Spring / 2014

The 30th Annual Mother's Day Run is Coming Up!

Many thanks to all who participated in our Mother's Day Run. Link to results.

Here are a couple memories from last year's Run:

Watch Mav'Riks ham it up.

Watch Carlos Ponce sing a Las Mananitas song.

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We Love Our Sponsors!

The Mother's Day Run is sponsored by many wonderful local businesses and individuals! Major sponsorships have come from:

Granite Construction

S. Martinelli Company



The Richard and Mary Solari Charitable Trust, The Foot Doctors, Whole Foods, KWAV, California Giant, Fitz Fresh, Lakeside Organic Gardens, FoodMaxx, McSherry & Hudson, Charter Business, Rotary Club of Watsonville, Peter and Betty Michelozzi, Joan Lane, Marjorie Bourret, The Running Company, C & N traactors, Marty Franich Ford, Thomas P. House-Attorney, Pho Tran Noodles, Branciforte Auto Repair, Don and Diane Cooley, Green Waste Recovery Inc., Taylor's Office Supply, Accusplit, Hutchinson & Bloodgood-CPA's, Luann Lauesen, Jan and Jerry Finney, Monument Lumber, Bill Bachan, Madelyn Winterbourne, Julian Grantz, Watsonville Coast Produce, and Mas Mac Inc. Additional sponsors will be listed in the next few weeks.

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Winter 2014

Cara y Corazón - Living with Faith and Heart

A very big part of what happens at Pajaro Valley Shelter Services to help homeless families become stable again is the case management services. Families are not only linked up to many community resources, but required to participate in workshops, classes and programs that begin the hard work of changing behaviors that have been barriers to stability. Mandatory participation in courses offered by Cara y Corazón is one of these.

The Watsonville Cara y Corazón affiliate regularly offers an 8-12 week support program which the Shelter's resident families are required to participate in. It is based on the work of Jerry Tello, an internationally recognized authority in family strengthening, therapeutic healing, cross cultural issues and motivational speaking.

The philosophy of Cara y Corazón is a culturally-based family strengthening approach that assists parents and other members of the extended family to raise and educate their children from a positive bicultural base. Many bicultural families in our community face the challenges of bridging the two cultures when parents have grown up in an Hispanic culture and the children are growing up in an American culture.

Cara y Corazón offers a course in Spanish and one in English. In their sessions, participants speak about their upbringing, the hard parts and the good parts. They re-engage with the good things that happened in their lives, their values, family traditions and holiday rituals that were important. Many of the PVSS residents have reported that this has been a great experience, being able to talk about things they never could before. They find new ways to develop quality time with their children and find forgiveness for times in their lives which were hurtful. After taking this course many PVSS residents, both men and women, have commented about being able to better discuss their emotions, to talk about deep woundings in their lives and about beginning the healing process. They have expressed the ability to feel the warmth of family where they couldn't before. All these steps are part of the path to personal and family stability for residents in the Pajao Valley Shelter Services programs.

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Winter / 2014

Happy Christmas at The Shelter Services!

Christmas at Pajaro Valley Shelter Services is always a big deal! Community members come out in force during the holidays with monetary donations large and small to the Shelter Services. Donations like these help the Shelter Services maintain its operations throughout the year. This year there were quite a few very generous donations such as this $10,000 gift from Marisella and Dick Pexioto (pictured above), owners of Lakeside Organic Farms.

And there is a bounty of donated gifts from individuals, churches, schools and groups such as Narconon and Salesian Sisters to help families enjoy Christmas. Staff receives, sorts, organizes and package the gifts for each family to make sure their needs and wishes are fulfilled, no small task! Then there are the meals, the cookie and gingerbread house making and decorating, trimming the donated Christmas trees, group activities, family photograph taking, and of course a visit from Santa!

The Shelter Services is deeply grateful to all of those community members who gave and gave to make this a very special Christmas for all the families in the emergency shelter and transitional housing programs.

We wish to especially thank: Geneva Mehl, California Giant, Satellite Dialysis, Mukti For Social Development, Suzie Yost, Orion Telescopes Binoculars, Salesians School, Soroptimist International Watsonville Chapter, Holy Eurcharist Catholic Community Church and Marilyn McConnell, PV High School Latino Club, Z Chiropractic, Dorie Rose, Volunteer Center of Santa Cruz County, Belmont Notre Dame Nuns, Hospice of Santa Cruz County, Community Foundation of Santa Cruz County, the Barr Family, and Green Valley Christian Church.

Here are some Christmas pictures from the Shelter on our Facebook page. "Like" us and stay current with the Shelter Services here, too!

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Winter 2014

Donations to PVSS Matched by 20%!!

We've raised nearly $13,000 in matching funds and an additional $1,000 in "bonus bucks" for raising the most donations in November!! Thanks to the Monterey Peninsula Foundation and the AT&T Pebble Beach ProAm Golf Tournament, Pajaro Valley Shelter Services once again benefits from their "Birdies for Charity" fund match program. This year, between November 1, 2013 and February 28, 2014 all donations made through this program will be returned to the Shelter Services with a 20% match!! So please consider making your donation really S-T-R-E-T-C-H by usiing the link below. 100% of your tax deductible donation will go to Pajaro Valley Shelter Services and none of your personal information will be used for any other purpose than to support the Shelter Services.

Click here and follw the instructions on this secure link to make your donation and add a 20% match for PV Shelter Services!
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Fall 2013

30th Anniversary Kicks Off with Mahalo!

Over a hundred people attended the Mahalo! event, including over a dozen former board members for a board reunion, donors and families from the Shelter programs. The event started with the reunion and glimpses of the Shelter's history laid out in a photo gallery.

Former board member and niece of co-founder Sister Marie Veronica Wagner, put together extraordinary, fun and colorful decorations. Former board member Jan King organized a "$20 for $20" raffle in which everyone who donated $20 received a gift valuing at least $20. There were over fifty donated prizes most of which far exceeded the $20 value. Pono Grill provided a geunine Hawaiian buffet and there even was a Tiki Bar, tended by board member Dick Frodsham.

The Island Breeze Band played great music and Sister Susan Olson (co-founder and former executive director), performed the Hukilau raising over $400 for the Shelter Services!

Click here to see Susan's Hukilau hula!

Attendees left with smiling faces, commemorative wine glasses and lots of little goodies from the tables.

Pajaro Valley Sheltere Services thanks these sponsors for making this wonderful event so fun and successful: Carol and Kirk Schmidt, Jan King, Art and Mary Jean Wagner, Peter and Bewtty Michelozzi, Tina Lau and Tom Charron, Lee Cliff, Janet Bell, Robert and Beverly Montague, Jan and Jerry Finney, Louis and Nadine Branciforte, Barbara and Chris Westover, Our Lady of Help, Aneita and John Radov, Ron and Gingi Kinninger, Imura Japanese Restaurant, Laura and Marc Grossman, Dick Frodsham, Larry Favor, Ann and Dobie Jenkins, Suzie Yost, Ken Schipper, Chase Renois, Betsy Stone, Delores Rodriguez, Danielle Garland, Corinne and George Cursi, Dorothy Burbank, Hugh Voris, Margaret Morales, AV Coyle, Suzy Hunt, Jo Covone, Sr. Maria Romero, Diane Robey, Kimberly Ferm, Randy Ragsdale, Teri Olson, Beatrice Morris, Geneva Mehl, Jeffry Jones, Sharon Barrett, Sr. Margaret Hoffman, Julie Conway, and Ogarita Carranza.

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Summer 2013

30th Anniversary Starts with a New Logo

With the commencement of Pajaro Valley Shelter Services' 30th year it seemed appropriate to honor the occasion with a new logo. The design represents all that Pajaro Valley Shelter Services stands for. You see a homeless family provided with shelter and embraced by loving spirit, defined by the heart. Underneath the shelter is the foundation: represented by the words "Building the skills for self-sufficiency". This IS the foundation of the Shelter Services' program and wherein lies the success of participant families. It refers to the caring case management and advocate services provided to each individual family, and the hard work each family has to do to gain stability. Many thanks go out to Schipper Graphpic Design Studio for their help in designing this logo and the 29th Mother's Day Run logo!

So just what HAS Pajaro Valley Shelter Services been up to for the past thirty years besides assisting about 80 families a year?

Download the 30 Year Milestones and find out more!
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Summer 2013

Bruce Woolpert Scholarship Fund Established

In deep appreciation for the dedicated and long-time support that former CEO of Graniterock Bruce Woolpert brought to the Watsonville community, including Pajaro Valley Shelter Services, the Shelter Services' Board of Directors established the "Bruce Woolpert Giving Back Scholarship". Mr. Woolpert passed away suddenly last year but his tremendous legacy lives on in the many lives he touched. He was a firm believer in the importance of education and although the details of the scholarship have not been finalized, it is expected that the annual $500 award will go to a young achiever from the Shelter Services program toward their educational pursuit. See our Honors page for more information about Mr. Woolpert.

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Spring 2013


Spa Day is an annual day of service provided by the Soroptimists of Watsonville. Every year, Soroptimist members come and provide hair cuts, facials, massage, make-up, nails and lunch for residents in the Shelter. This is such a special day for residents who feel nurtured and extra special, when their lives are normally stressful and uncertain.

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Spring 2013

Thank You to Many for a Beautiful Easter Celebration

There were many folks 'behind the scenes' helping families in both the Shelter and Transitional Housing Program feel joy this Easter! It started with gifts of school supplies, games and cupcakes brought on Saturday by Shoreline Community Church of Monterey, to celebrate past birthdays of Shelter residenrs. Then Sunday was a full on Easter celebration with thanks going out to Sherri Glaum of Glaum Eggs for donating eggs, to the Soroptimists of Watsonville to help make Easter baskets and work with residents to color eggs, to Troop Leader Rachel Mason and local Girl Scout Troop #10424 who helped decorate eggs and make baskets, and to Notre Dame Elementary for also making baskets for residents. What an incredible outpouring of love and caring!

Thank you all for your giving spirit and generosity to others less fortunate in our community!

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A Second Emergency Shelter Serves More Families

For nearly thirty years Pajaro Valley Shelter Services has operated an Emergency Shelter on Brennan Street for women and children, serving over a hundred people every year. The Brennan Street shelter has been limited to women with no male children over 12 years old. Although the Tranistional Housing Program accepts families there have still been families with males over the age of 12 needing emergency sheltering. In response to this need, Pajaro Valley Shelter Services staff developed a program to help by opening space in the housing unit at Beach street as an Emergency Shelter Annex. The Annex provides the short term interim safe space for families with males over 12 to begin to get back on their feet. The same program rules that have helped so many families, saving money and participating in case management services, apply.

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Spring/Summer 2012

Residents Eat Up Nutrition Workshops!

Pajaro Valley Shelter services does way more than just provide sheltering for its resident families. And the Case Management program of PVSS goes way beyond making sure residents receive counseling, or job skills to get them back on their feet! The approach to helping families become self-sufficent again is much more holistic: the WHOLE person is helped! Whole person in this sense includes everything from emotional well-being to physical well-being. These efforts by PVSS are, in part, an effort to address the rise in obesity and diabetes, particularly in children.

Thanks to grants from the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur Mother St. Joseph Fund, and Second Harvest Food Bank, PVSS residents are learning new healthy skills and these skills are paying off! Residents are not only receiving nutritious foods, but are taking workshops on how to read labels and purchase healthy foods, and on how to cook healthy in their dietary and ethnic choices.

Residents have really taken to this program, no doubt already feeling the differences in their well-being. And they are even making recommendations to staff about what foods to buy for the Shelter!

Helpful Links

For more useful information about Santa Cruz County check the following:

Santa Cruz County Government

Santa Cruz Library System

Santa Cruz employment