A Fun Filled February

March 2, 2022

Chocolate Covered Strawberries & Pretzels

This past Friday (2/25), Partnerships for Families in Commerce gathered with families through zoom to celebrate Valentine’s Day. We provided families with the materials needed for the family bonding activity. Everyone came together virtually and covered strawberries and pretzels with different chocolate. Families even got creative and added sprinkles and drizzle to their pretzels and strawberries. The activity concluded with the families sharing the tasty treats they created.

-Stephanie Arciniega, Penny Lane Centers

This is what some families had to share:

“My girls and I loved it so much. They were able to get creative with how they decorated and they were so proud eating it all after knowing they did that! I love being able to do something fun like that with them and making the awesome memory with them”

“What I enjoyed the most was being able to spend quality time with my oldest daughter and she was so happy. She even made more pretzels to share with friends from school. Watching her how happy she was filled my heart with so much happiness”

“My kids enjoyed making the chocolate strawberries. My oldest daughter Joy enjoyed it the most. I took her to Walmart over the weekend to buy more supplies to make chocolate strawberries again. Thanks again for allowing us to participate”

Project Pop-Drop Event

On Saturday 2/26/22, Penny Lane’s Transitional and Permanent Supportive Housing Programs received “The Drop.” Our wonderful friends over at Project Pop Drop (Insta @projectpopdrop) stopped by with several carloads of donations. Our clients were provided with food, snacks, clothing, and undergarments. This gracious donation helped our Transitional Homeless Youth Program, youth exiting foster care, low-income families, First-5 Children’s Program, and our veterans.

The event itself was a Saturday afternoon delight, filled with smiling faces and giving hearts. Our parking lot was filled with donors ready to deliver supplies in form of their signature “Drop Assembly Line.” As upbeat music played through our speakers, a line of balloons set the tone for donors to dance as they brought joy to our clients. Donor’s dancing to tunes of Prince, Justin Timberlake, Bruno Mars was a great way for us to start our weekend, please take some time to visit http://www.projectpopdrop.org/ to make a difference.

Special thanks to The Snyder Family, Mr. Jeff Korrell, Sharon Korrell, Kathy Huck (@about_my_Father), Tisha B. Janigian (@sheishopela), Bea Italia (@beaitalia53), Anni Aceian (@aceianbuilders1), and Jason Potell (@jasonpotell), Asdourian Family, Mo Freeman, Cigrid Zeyala, Sally Bayram, Lori Hutcherson, Nick and Alex Momjian. If we missed anyone who participated, thank you! We appreciate all you do for our families.

Project Pop Drop is an organization created by the Platinum International Products and Services team. Platinum sells office supply products, which fuel Project Pop Drop. Their team does a monthly Pop Drop the last week of every month. They bring food, clothing, medical supplies, beauty products, toys etc. They feature different missions, community programs and philanthropy driven organizations. They are thrilled and humbled that they have helped facilitate feeding over 90,000 meals per month with their program. They are proud to say that starting in 2015 they have gone national! They believe every movement starts with local leadership. We can all help make a difference and impact our communities. This is what life is all about. #GIVEANDRECEIVE, please join them. Join the movement!

Once again, a big THANK YOU to everyone who came out this past Saturday, our hearts are full!

-Shiva Berjis, Penny Lane Centers

Imagine Village II Begins Construction in the Antelope Valley

As you may have heard, we closed on our construction financing for Imagine Village II a few days before Christmas and we have begun construction!  The video illustrates the start of the grading prior to forming and pouring the foundation slab.  The building is an 80-unit large family project with half of the units for permanent supportive housing for families and youth who are homeless of which a portion are impacted with mental illness.  

Sun Commons Update

Sun Commons is 68% complete.  The windows are in, and we are installing the building electrical, plumbing, and mechanical systems and those are followed directly by the addition of insulation and drywall.  Rain and Covid made appearances at Sun Commons in January and early February, but our construction team at Bernards navigated those challenges well.  Abbey Road and Penny Lane are impressed with their ability to revise the construction schedule to make up any lost time.  Abbey Road and Linc Housing have begun our initial lease-up discussions with our Property Management Team, Penny Lane’s Housing Services folks and our public lenders to ensure that each unit’s income requirements and tenant selection criteria is met.  This is a complicated overlay based on the requirements of each of our funders.  We hope to have all our final sign offs in late August/early September and begin moving people in.  We will be making a flyer soon with the income requirements for the general affordable units and we will also be providing information on the special needs units for homeless families and homeless youth, a portion of which are folks who are impacted by mental illness.

-Maura Johnson, Abbey Road Director of Housing

How to Raise Non-Racist Children

On Monday, February 7th Penny Lane Centers joined Community action Partners of Sonoma County in their monthly “Community Conversations on Race”.  The topic of the evening was how to raise anti racist children.  Judy Grant of Penny Lane Centers, along with Katie Watts-Whitaker of CAP discussed the difference between being non racist and antiracist, practical steps parents can take to help raise anti racist children and the various resources that are available to families to promote antiracism.  One of the things Judy shared is that it is never too early to address these issues with our children.  From modeling behavior to having discussions in the home.  Our children are capable of understanding what is fair versus what is not and, as such, they are capable of taking action by embracing our differences.