“I think what Day One does is really listen to what’s going on in the community and we care,” says Christy Zamani, Executive Director of Day One. “That’s it. We really care. We’re the advocates for the community members that are too busy to understand what’s going on in their own backyard.”
On July 28th, Day One presents “Networking for a Cause” benefitting the nonprofit’s programs that aim to break the poverty cycle, focus on nutrition and health, and enable community members to better their lives.
“If Day One wasn’t around, I honestly don’t know if I would’ve made it,” says Claudia Morales, Day One Prevention Programs Coordinator. “I don’t know if I would’ve graduated from high school, I don’t know if I would’ve gone to college. A lot of the friends I was hanging out with, a lot of them, some of them didn’t graduate, and a lot of them now I see them and many of them got pregnant really early, many of them are still lost to this day, so I think Day One just really brought some stability into my life and it made me want to reach higher.”
Day One programs are developed taking into consideration particular strategies “that have been proven effective through research by organizations like the Center for Substance Abuse Prevention and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” Programs include providing information regarding drugs and health, offering alternative activities, and identifying problems and offering referrals and support. Other programs help teenagers and young adults acquire leadership skills, express themselves in “a peaceful, effective and socially responsible way,” embrace a healthy lifestyle, and participate in community and public service projects. Day One also teaches kids about local and state issues, about politics and the need to vote.
Programs include Youth Advocates, Block 9 bringing fun and free activities to the neighborhoods “one block at a time,” as well as “Nutrition 101 @ Muir,” “Summer Skillz,” and “Day One Friday Hikes in July.”
Jazmine de la Torre, nutrition educator: “If I can make a difference in my community, is for students to have access to healthier foods. And northwest Pasadena is a very food desert sort of place, there’s a lot of fast foods. There’s not a lot of access to activities… they don’t have access to going to places like Paseo in Old Town. I really wish that the City as a whole would be able to help us to create programs so that we could add more activities and a place for them to be in northwest, to shop and hang out with their friends.”
At Networking for a Cause, Day One brings together over 150 of the areas “reputable trusted advisors” for a mixer to encourage professionals to become involved in the community and also to build one’s business through networking.
From Executive Director Christy Zamani: “The premise of all of this is bringing people together. When we bring people together, anything is possible. So that’s our goal at Day One. Really infusing the fabric of our community and having people connect. It’s through that connectivity that great things happen.”
The location for Day One’s benefit Networking for a Cause is Maxwell House, currently headquarters of Western Justice Center and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was built by Sylvanus Marston and Edgar Marbury in 1929 for a successful and wealthy East Coast litigator and philanthropist named George H. Maxwell. The home was built on the grounds of the old Vista del Arroyo Hotel, which is now the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. Maxwell House is a 13,000 square foot “bungalow” designed in the Mediterranean Italianate style with a tile roof, stucco walls, a Palladian entrance, and elaborate architectural details.
Networking for a Cause at Maxwell House will have live music, hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar, and a silent auction. All proceeds—100%—benefit Day One programs.