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The WVCS Blog
West Valley News & Notes

Making Collective Impact - The Emergency Assistance Network

Did you know that West Valley Community Services is one member of a county-wide collaborative united in the fight against hunger and homelessness?

That collaborative is called the Emergency Assistance Network (EAN), a collection of seven community-based organizations that harness their unique strengths and local roots to serve individuals and families facing food and housing insecurity across Santa Clara County.

Our member agencies collectively have nearly 5 centuries of front line service delivery experience, providing direct support and referral services to families with children, at-risk youth, seniors, individuals, and disabled adults who are extremely low-income, living on a fixed-income, homeless or are at risk of becoming homeless. The EAN is comprised of:

  • Community Services Agency, serving Mountain View, Los Altos, and Los Altos Hills

  • LifeMoves, serving Palo Alto and parts of San Jose

  • Sacred Heart Community Service, serving San Jose

  • The Salvation Army, serving San Jose

  • St. Joseph Family Center, serving Gilroy

  • Sunnyvale Community Services, serving Sunnyvale and Alviso,

  • and West Valley Community Services, serving Cupertino, Saratoga, West San Jose, Monte Sereno, Los Gatos, and the surrounding unincorporated mountain region.

The EAN offers an unparalleled breadth and depth of safety net services to low-income County residents, and as a collaborative, we have the capacity to deliver a truly coordinated network of services, including:

  • Rental or mortgage assistance to families facing eviction, preventing the devastating personal and societal costs of homelessness.

  • Emergency assistance with utility bills, enabling families to put that money towards rent and thus maintain stable housing.

  • Grocery distributions, providing nutritious food and improved health as well as enabling clients to allocate scant financial resources to other basic needs.

  • Coordinating the Transportation Assistance Program, a partnership with Valley Transportation Authority that provides thousands of subsidized VTA passes to low-income residents.

  • Comprehensive, culturally appropriate outreach and information and referral services connecting families to resources and services that can help them attain and maintain self-sufficiency.

Individual organizations also specialize in shelter services (LifeMoves), public assistance enrollment support (Sacred Heart Community Service and West Valley Community Services), and senior services (Community Services Agency).

With collective effort comes collective impact. In just the last fiscal year, our network has helped 63,287 individuals through our food and nutrition programs and provided 7,645,902 meals. In addition, through our homelessness prevention initiatives, we helped keep 4,455 families from losing their homes.

So every time an individual makes a donation to WVCS, or a volunteer spends time in our market or provides financial coaching or tax assistance to our clients, they are part of a regional movement to end hunger and homelessness. That’s collective action at work!

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