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The WVCS Blog
West Valley News & Notes

A Message from the Interim Executive Director

Sujatha Venkatraman

I am so honored to have the opportunity to lead West Valley Community Services as the Interim Executive Director. When I started at the agency fifteen years ago, WVCS was 35 years old. Over these fifteen years, we went through a significant transformation, including a name change from Cupertino Community Services to West Valley Community Services. Today, we are a critical safety net for west valley regions and support the most vulnerable members of our community. Over these years, WVCS has grown into a healthy, thriving organization, both operationally and fiscally. The agency has grown from offering essential services to an agency advocating for systems change to fight hunger and homelessness.

We have much to celebrate and reflect on as we approach this new year. We have created and expanded many programs and services in the last fifteen years. We started a senior transportation program, Reach Your Destination Easily (RYDE), to help support the needs of our seniors and give them the independence to go to their doctor's appointments, attend an event, and hang out with their friends. One of our most important initiatives was to go where our community is to serve them in addition to serving those who can come to us. We started our mobile operations Park-it market to cover the entire west valley region. Today, we are serving two community colleges, two senior and family affordable housing units, and three schools in the west San Jose and Los Gatos neighborhoods. We expanded our market operations to help meet the demands and create a shopping experience for clients.

We started two unique programs to support the unhoused community: a job development program that offers jobs, onsite job training, and housing for two unhoused individuals; and the Tenant-based rental assistance program that provides housing and supportive services to unhoused families. We formed the Lived Experience Advisory Committee ( LEAC), which allows community members and current clients to have conversations, take action on issues that impact their lives, and eventually advocate for system change.

All this work was possible because of the dedication and passion of WVCS staff, board, and volunteers, who have shared a common goal of improving the lives of those we serve. The support from my stellar team and the community gives me the energy and motivation to lead this work as interim Executive Director. Together, we will continue to provide support, resources, and a sense of hope to those facing the most challenging circumstances in our community.

During this time, I am committed to carrying forward the legacy of service that has been at the heart of our organization from the beginning. We will build on our progress and address any challenges that may arise. I will focus on building solid partnerships with community organizations, continue to ensure our core services meet our community's needs, maintain financial stability, and work with community leaders to bring policy changes in our efforts to fight hunger and homelessness.

I also want to thank our supporters, donors, and community partners for positively impacting our communities. Together we will continue making a difference.

In partnership,

Sujatha Venkatraman

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