Local KKXX radio show Chico Now, recently had our very own Tom Tenorio, CEO, on as a guest. Vince Haynie was the gracious host of the show and we appreciate his interest in what we are doing here in the community. He was interested to learn more about our Esplanade House and other CAA programs.
You can listen to the podcast by clicking here, or read the transcript of the interview below.
Best Kept Secret in Town?
Vince Haynie: I would like to welcome Tom Tenorio, CEO of the Community Action Agency of Butte County. What would you like to talk about today?
Tom Tenorio: We are excited about just telling more people about what the Community Action Agency is, and what we're doing. Because sometimes I still hear the idea that we're the best kept secret in town, and I am tired of hearing that. So I just want to take advantage of every opportunity to be able to help folks to get more up close and personal with the CAA, as we're known.
"At Butte County CAA we provide hope to people struggling with poverty to become more self-sustaining by meeting tangible needs in the areas of energy savings, affordable food, and housing."
That's why I wanted to start off with some of the things that people tend to want to know more about, which are the services that we provide to the community.
Feeding Butte County, through our North State Food Bank
Tom Tenorio: There are on average 1 in 8 adults, 1 in 4 children, who are food insecure in our communities that we serve. We receive the millions of pounds of food from various sources, both locally and regionally, and get it into the hands of hungry families. That's our North State Food Bank.
Currently, we have what we call tailgate food giveaways, in various parts of our six county service area. And we look for partners, whether it's businesses or other groups who want to help contribute in some way in regards to these food giveaways whether that be through volunteering or contributing to the food that we are able to give away. Because then they get a chance to really see up close and personal the families that are having the food insecurities and put a face to what food insecurity looks like.
Lowering Energy Bills, One Home at a Time
Tom Tenorio: Through our Energy and Environmental Services, we're weatherizing homes, making them more energy efficient. Our services on average lower energy bills by 25%-35% per month for those low income household's energy uses. Let's face it, dollars are not as plentiful as any of us would like.
Cost of living in California is generally high. So every little bit that we can to try to bring those costs of living down, helps. That's what weatherization does inside of a house. Our program seals up your home and provides energy efficient upgrades to appliances; which then in turn helps make your home more livable and more comfortable, especially for our seniors.
Our programs also provides some repairs that are much needed. For instance, we've replaced heaters, A/C units, windows, doors, etc. It just depends on what the diagnostics are that reveal what the need is. You can find out more information on how to apply to our Weatherization or Home Energy Assistance Programs by clicking here.
Reuniting Families through our CAA Esplanade House
Vince Haynie: So the residents of the Esplanade House, is it families always? It's not single individuals?
Tom Tenorio: Correct! Our other big program is our Esplanade House program, it's a transitional shelter program for homeless families here in the city of Chico. We do get folks from other areas as well. What's great about this program is that it provides an opportunity for families that are really at risk and who have really suffered from a lot of fragmented issues, to be able to be safe in an environment that provides support services to them, while also being able to conquer some changes that they're going to need.
It's really been heralded as a great program, not only from the folks who go through the program, but also from the supporters. This is not the kind of thing that we can do ourselves but we engage a lot of partners, a lot of collaborators. All because they believe that families are our future, kids are our future, and they want to make sure that we are in a position to provide them with another chance at being able to be the family that they can be. This is what we're committed to doing. So it's a combination of our food services, energy services, shelter services, and we have even more too!
Find out more information about all the things we do for our community by clicking here or how you can get involved to better your community as well!
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Since 1967, the Community Action Agency of Butte County has been serving the needs of the region in alignment with the charter of the National Community Action Agencies overarching goal: To alleviate the causes and conditions of poverty by whatever means necessary in your community. As Butte County CAA, we provide hope to people struggling with poverty to become more self-sustaining by meeting tangible needs in the areas of energy savings, affordable food, and housing. Connect with us to find out how you can get involved.