Director’s Commentary With Jaime Espiritu

Our recent feature on the East Palo Alto Senior Center has generated an overwhelmingly positive response from our readers and fans. Many people have written to Peninsula Toastmasters wanting to know more. We sit down with Jaime again to find out more about the backstory of his project.

1. How were you introduced to the East Palo Alto Senior Center project?

One of the pastors at my church (Abundant Life Christian Fellowship in Mountain View) asked me to do a promotional video in order to persuade the East Palo Alto Senior Center to continue to give funding to the center. The Pastor was a volunteer at the center. I did many video projects at church with him. I first met him when he was doing a program called “Inspire U“. Inspire U is an outreach program that mixes life skills with flag football for at risk kids. I videotaped their flag football games, made highlights and created 1 minute promotional video clips that is shown during the service.

2. Do you feel a personal connection to the people at the center?

I feel a definite connection to the seniors at EPA Senior Center because the people there have no where and no family to depend on. For some, this is there only place to feel loved and for something to do. For others, some just don’t have the money to meet daily needs such as food, clothing and shelter.

3. For you, who had the most inspiring personal story?

The most inspiring story is Mrs. Grant. She is the Executive Director who personally cares for each person at the center. She constantly gives to this organization. Mrs. Grant also gives free monthly breakfast meals to anyone in the community. What struck me the most is the that she personally talks to each person who enters the center. She makes everyone feel like their personal friend.

4. What do you think persuaded the City Council to change their mind about the funding?

The council was about to cut funding at the Center . They just didn’t know what was going on there. The video definitely changes the EPA’s council’s mind  they know now the faces at the center. They heard and seen the stories for some of the members who come there everyday. They hear the voices, the facial expressions and the sites and sounds of the center.

5. Is there still an unmet need? And if so, how can people help?

There is always an unmet need at the East Palo Alto Senior Center. They always need volunteers. They also need donations to buy more food and keep the meal programs going.

On behalf of the community of which we are part, Peninsula Toastmasters thanks Jaime Espiritu for his time and applaud him for his wonderful work. Jaime’s talents truly sparkle on film. Communication is great, but action is even better. To find out how Jaime can help you produce a great video, please visit vcpfilm.com. To learn how you can help at the East Palo Alto Senior Center, please click HERE to contact the organization.

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