Mutual Housing California is proud to be awarded AmeriCorps VISTAs through NeighborWorks America. Our mission is to develop, operate and advocate for sustainable housing that builds strong communities through resident participation and leadership development. And it falls directly in line with AmeriCorps anti-poverty focus. VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America) was founded in 1965 as a national service program to fight poverty in America. In 1993, VISTA was incorporated into the AmeriCorps network of programs.
Today, more than 40.6 million Americans live in poverty. AmeriCorps VISTA taps the skills, talents and passion of more than 8,000 Americans annually to support community efforts to overcome poverty. Since 2009, Mutual Housing California has hosted 24 year-long and summer NeighborWorks VISTAs.
Each NeighborWorks VISTA has helped us build and expand a variety of anti-poverty programs within our 19 multifamily communities serving nearly 3,200 resident members (recent demographics). Examples include expanding computer literacy programs, developing financial capability programs, researching volunteer management systems, and building greater capacity for our green leaders program. Our green leaders program utilizes educational material that our VISTAs custom assemble for Mutual Housing resident members to encourage maintenance of a healthy sustainable home. The material includes tips on energy conservation, water conservation, recycling, and how to improve indoor air quality.
Meet our current VISTA
Name: Gerardo Ramirez
Hometown: Manteca, California
Service Term: August, 2017 to August, 2018.
Title: Green Leaders Program Associate
- Promote green education at Mutual Housing communities.
- Build upon the sustainability program developed by previous VISTAs.
- Create an investment in green initiatives/issues among residents and staff.
- Develop green training program that prepares youth resident members for various summer internship opportunities with community partners in the field of sustainability.