The City Center is a bridge between homelessness and success for families with children

The City Center’s Year 2 fundraising drive is about to kick off. They must continue raising funds for The City Center to purchase their own home. Historically, 53% of their monthly costs were for rent, so buying the converted motel in downtown Ventura has been a big priority. Board member and longtime supporter of The City Center, John Exell, said, “The City Center program has proven success – we have seven years of not one graduate of our program returning to homelessness, a testament to our unique program. Our program is difficult, with many tough goals set, but we provide mentoring and counseling to help our residents become self-sufficient and thrive”.

The requirements for graduation from The City Center are:
– Be completely off government subsistence programs
– Have a full-time income-generating job
– Have a savings account
– Reliable transportation
– Be 100% debt free

Jim Duran, Executive Director of The City Center says, “The City Center goal-based program keeps our residents and children on track. They all have a “tiny home” or room just for them and their children, which allows the family to stay together. Being unhoused is a difficult path for anyone to take, but for homeless moms, dads, with children, it is horrible. No child should be homeless. The residents in our bridge program, which transitions folks to a healthy, supportive lifestyle, often go on to be counselors and help others. We are so proud of all of them.”

They recently held  The CAKE event which was a day of photos, filming residents and their children, and discussing The City Center’s impact on their lives. In addition, there was a giant cake for the families to celebrate Year One’s fundraising result and gratitude for the Ventura County community stepping up to help.

Coming up on August 18, at 5:30pm, is a rare opportunity to see The City Center, meet families and talk with them at a “sponsor a room” event, which asks community members, faith-based organizations, and businesses to help.    To help house more homeless families and children please  donate by visiting

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