Century Villages at Cabrillo Celebrates Two Decades in the Struggle to End Homelessness

Local provider of housing and services for those experiencing homelessness, Century Villages at Cabrillo (CVC), will celebrate 20 years of offering hope to thousands of individuals and families on April 12 with a CVC 20th Anniversary Dinner Gala and fundraiser.

Former L.A. County Supervisor Don Knabe, former Long Beach Mayor Beverly O’Neill and banking executive and founding Century Housing Corporation Board member Carrie Hawkins will be honored for their efforts to end homelessness in Los Angeles County. All three helped with transforming the Villages from a dilapidated Navy shipyard into the thriving community it stands as today, according to the release.

The event will also recognize the work of the more than 30 partnering nonprofit and government agencies that serve the needs of 1,500 Village residents, including veterans, families, individuals and children.

“At this important milestone in our history, we are excited to celebrate those individuals, organizations and government agencies whose hard work and dedication have played such an important role in our efforts to end homelessness,” Brian D’Andrea, CVC president, said in a statement. “Against great odds, our partners have shown creativity, passion and tenacity in developing programs and services to lift our clients out of the depths of despair and put them on a path to greater health and well-being. We are truly indebted to them.”

Founded in 1997, CVC implements a collaborative model in which many agencies work together to provide affordable child care, physical and mental health care for veterans and families, veteran case management, after-school activities for youth, a family shelter program, transitional housing for veterans, career-enhancement training and other opportunities for personal development.

CVC provided the following recent data:

  • CVC’s monthly cost of housing and supportive services was less than 30 percent of the estimated monthly cost of serving a homeless individual outside of supportive housing.
  • Its measure of housing stability — the percentages of residents remaining in permanent housing six months after moving in (99 percent) and a year (91 percent) — topped industry benchmarks of 90 percent and 85 percent, respectively.
  • Resident incomes grew more than 7 percent on average, almost double the rate for L.A. County and the United States as a whole.
  • At the same time, residents saved substantially on rent, with permanent residents averaging monthly savings of $725 over L.A./Long Beach metro area fair-market rates.
  • Pathways to Health, a bold initiative that takes a holistic approach to improving health and well-being, enrolled hundreds of residents in just the first year.

Photo courtesy of Century Villages at Cabrillo of Anchor Place by Nahid Photography.

With its continued investment in building infrastructure to ensure the safety and vibrancy of the campus, CVC completed Anchor Place last year, a five-story affordable housing development with 120 apartments, open space and recreational areas, bringing CVC’s total number of units to more than 800. Additionally, CVC remodeled its Social Hall and reopened the US VETS Career Center alongside a media center providing video equipment, a state-of-the-art editing bay and access to media training.

D’Andrea added that much of CVC’s success is owed to the City of Long Beach, “whose unified approach to addressing the issue has led to a 21 percent decrease in homelessness in the city from 2015 to 2017,” according to the release.

“Our work is not done,” D’Andrea stated. “But we know that the Villages features the unmistakable qualities of community and home. Ours is a proud, supportive and compassionate community for residents transitioning from some of life’s most difficult challenges, and a place where the immediacy of homelessness gives way to the optimism for the future.”

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Asia Morris has been with the Long Beach Post for five years, specializing in coverage of the arts. Her parents gave her the name because they wanted her to be a world traveler and they got their wish. She has obliged by pursuing art, journalism and a second career as a competitive cyclist.
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