Two nonprofits join forces to provide homes and gardens
FOOD Share and Habitat for Humanity of Ventura County are seeking volunteers and donations for a one-day home build event on Aug. 15. There are 140 volunteer spaces, to work either at 315 Cooper Road in Oxnard or at 145 Ojai St. in Santa Paula.

Bonnie Weigel, CEO of FOOD Share, described how the event goes beyond helping the future residents of these Habitat houses. “The idea is to give someone a home, but also build long-lasting community,” she said. “We will be teaching our clients to garden. Growing food is a way of giving back to the environment and making fresh produce available for everyone.”

Volunteers of all skill levels are needed to build two duplex homes. The event runs from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., but morning or afternoon shifts are available. Lunch will be donated by Bobbi’s Mexican Food in Camarillo.

“If you only have an hour to work, or a few food items, everything still helps,” Weigel said. “By taking care of neighbors, we are taking care of ourselves.”

Habitat for Humanity of Ventura County is the oldest California chapter of the ecumenical Christian housing ministry, which has affiliates worldwide. The chapter has built 47 local homes with the help of more than 52,000 volunteers. FOOD Share collects and distributes food year-round to more than 150 partner agencies throughout Ventura County. Its programs feed more than 41,000 local people each month.

Both organizations are seeking $25 donations to continue serving low-income families in Ventura County. To donate, go to foodshare.com or www.habitatventura.org. To volunteer at the build sites, call Matt Gilling at 485-6065 or e-mail mattg@habitatventura.org