Camden Cares Boot Campaign - California
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Camden California kicked off our first year of working with the Camden Cares Veteran Boot Campaign on December 7th, and was very excited to give back to our veteran Ralph Sarabia and his family. Ralph served two tours in Iraq, and has suffered some issues from his service but despite this, Ralph is going back to school and is earning his Masters in social work in May of 2018. He is very dedicated to his veteran community, is a counselor for combat veterans and has a shoe charity called ‘Project Foothold’, where he donates hundreds of new shoes to homeless veterans and families.
One of the veteran's wishes was to have a safe area outside, where the kids could play and they could enjoy a space together as a family. With a little organization, preparation and teaming up with some very generous landscape partners Camden got to work!
Prior to the December 7th event date, our Regional Landscape Director Ernie Paez and our landscapers were hard at work getting the area ready for us.
Once Camden got on the scene, we went right to work. We were assigned to our teams and it was GO time!
It was so wonderful to look around and watch everyone with smiles on their faces. We were all having a good time, but we were also working hard together as a team to give back to this very deserving veteran. It was clear from the early hours of the event, that this day would be special. As we completed our tasks, we also played with the veteran's children. We got to chat with Ralph and his wife Jody as we went about the day. His children were excited to help in the process and were very proud to be "little helpers" as they dumped mulch into buckets. It was a great experience for me that I will never forget and I'm thankful that Camden allows their associates the opportunity to have these experiences.
But what did other Camden associates have to say about California’s 2017 Camden Cares Veteran Boot Campaign?
Liesl Ayres “It always feels so great to give back to the community and participate in Camden Cares events. The Sarabia family was wonderful, humble, hardworking—even their children helped with the landscape project! I was so impressed with Ralph and his family that it made this experience all that much more meaningful. I feel privileged to have been able to give back to this family. Getting to meet and spend time with the people our efforts directly affected was incredible—something I’ll never forget. The Sarabia’s being the wonderful people they are, just made it all that more special.”
Kelli Retzer “It was such a great experience to be a part of this volunteer event and to see the project unfold from start to finish. It was so rewarding to see the direct impact our work had on the Sarabia family. The look in Jody’s and Ralph’s eyes and the smiles on their children’s faces showed how grateful and appreciative they were.”
Lindsay Green “Camden is just such an amazing company that cares genuinely about helping the right people. What we did for the Sarabia family was so heartwarming and I am grateful to have been part of such a great project!”
Claudia Mazzatta “Meeting and getting to know the Sarabia family made the event very personal. They’re a great family and I’m glad we got to provide a service to someone who has done so much for our country!”
The Santa Ana winds were strong on December 7th, and there were alot of dirty faces and bodies by the end of the day but there were a lot of smiling faces and feelings of accomplishment. I left that day feeling that I had helped an awesome family but I had also grown a little closer to my Camden family.
Camden had some amazing partners working with us on this year’s Camden Cares Veteran Boot Campaign and we really appreciate their generosity and truly making a difference in the lives of our veteran and his family. This upgraded area of the veteran’s home will not only be an area that he and his family can be proud of, but they will also be able to enjoy this safe area as a family for years to come.
Camden thanks our very generous partner Landgraphics for their gift of landscape materials in the 2017 Camden Cares Veteran Boot Campaign. This has made such a wonderful impact on the Sarabia family and we couldn’t be more grateful to have you as a partner on this project. This family is so deserving, and already enjoying this beautifully landscaped area of their home so we thank you again for your wonderful support.
Another big thank you to our very generous partner Mission Landscape, for their gift of landscape materials in the 2017 Camden Cares Veteran Boot Campaign. Your generosity has given the family an area to connect as a family and take in the beautiful landscape together, and we truly appreciate your team working with us. You really have made a difference in the life of this veteran's family!
Last, but certainly not least. A huge thank you to another generous partner Nieves Landscape, for not only providing landscape materials but also providing the man hours that it took to complete this very rewarding experience. In addition to the materials you donated a crew for 4 days, and we all thank you so much for all the time you put in to making the Sarabia’s family landscape look fantastic! This upgraded area of their home is already getting so much use from the family, between kicking around the soccer ball on the new sod or practicing the newest gymnastic routine. Thank you for truly making a difference!
Having Ralph, Jody, Jeremiah, Uriah and Gracie Sarabia in our group photo really closed out the event on a wonderful note! As many times as the family thanked Camden for all of our help and contributions, it was really us thanking them for their hard work, dedication and service to our country. It was a great way to start our first year with the Camden Cares Veteran Boot Campaign and we are definitely looking forward to another successful campaign in 2018!