Active Adults Are Backbone of Local Nonprofits

Lea Rosenberg sorts puzzles on June 5 at the Yolo County SPCA Thrift Store in Davis.

(From Press Release) – Older Davis residents give more time, funds

Leaders in the nonprofit sector agree, if it wasn’t for the support of Davis’ active adults, things wouldn’t be the same.

Davis residents 55 and older contribute more time and money to area charities than those who are younger or in surrounding communities. Highly educated and filled with life experiences, they also provide thoughtful and valuable insight.

“They’re the backbone of our support,” said Ray Bautista, who coordinates more than 600 volunteers for the Yolo County Food Bank, which distributes more than 4 million pounds of groceries to those in need.

“Seventy to 80 percent of our long-term volunteers — meaning six months or more — are over 55. They are the ones who stick around and provide consistent support on a regular basis,” Bautista said.

They also give more than their time. “Most of our donations come from Davis, and most of those are from older adults.”

Tracy Fauver, executive director of Yolo County CASA (Court-Appointed Special Advocates for children), echoed that sentiment. Of the organization’s 135 volunteers, 50 of them are 55 or older. Specially trained volunteers advocate for abused and neglected children in the foster system.

“The majority of our volunteers are from Davis,” she said. “Davis is the number one area in Yolo County that provides us with volunteers.”

However, many active adults who want to stay in Davis are frustrated by the limited housing options, especially if they want a quiet, single-story, ADA-accessible home. Most housing in town is geared toward college students or young families.

“If we don’t plan ahead to ensure housing for those active adults, we could lose this precious resource of time, talent and treasure,” said Dave Taormino, a longtime Davis real estate developer and proponent of the West Davis Active Adult Community.

Lea Rosenberg, 70, volunteers extensively with the Yolo County SPCA and Sutter Davis Foundation board. An active member of Soroptimist International of Davis, the Davis Odd Fellows and Rebekahs, and University Farm Circle, she was named Volunteer of the Year by The Davis Enterprise three times, and Davis Citizen of the Year in 1991.

She said she supports the idea of appropriate housing for active adults. “If it’s getting seniors out of their big homes into a community that they want, I think it’s great.”

“It’s Important to have the older generations there to mentor the younger ones and keep the tradition going,” Rosenberg said. “Once people retire, they can’t wait to find something else to do — a board to join, a new adventure in their life — to give back to Davis.”

Fauver said that’s a generation we need to support. “We try to reach the younger set with things like the Big Day of Giving, but if it weren’t for our senior donors, we’d really struggle to be as effective as we are and serve as many kids as we do. Without a really vibrant community of folks 55 and older, I think a lot of nonprofits would suffer.”

Bautista said lack of housing for active adults would have a ripple effect. “Our consistent volunteers are from Davis, and that definitely would go down if we saw some of them leave. If they moved to Dixon or Vacaville or Sacramento, we’d lose a donation base and a big part of our volunteer base. It would definitely make an impact, because with any kind of nonprofit, retirees and people around that age give the most.”

Enter the maximum amount you want to pay each month
Sign up for


About The Author

Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board.

Related posts

47 thoughts on “Active Adults Are Backbone of Local Nonprofits”

    1. David Greenwald

      They didn’t pay for it.

      Like I said last time, I think these are valuable even though you know that it’s coming directly from the developer.

        1. David Greenwald

          It’s important for the community to understand the project and to understand the perspective of the developers. Them getting these out early will facilitate that. So I think it’s a good thing. I think the readers here are smart enough to parse the articles and ask important questions and raise potential objections. I see more information as a good thing – not a bad thing.

        2. Keith O

          David, I’ve noticed that you often list notices and some releases on the back pages of your blog.  How does this advertisement qualify for a front page view?

  1. Matt Williams

    What this article does not answer is the following:

    1. — Will active adults with current ties to Davis actually make the decision to move from their current residence to one of these residences?

    The existence of active adults in a community, and the high level of activities they participate in the community does not necessarily translate into a willingness to make the financial decision to change their residence.  Bottom-line, this article talks about theoretical demand for the housing proposed, but it doesn’t address the issue of whether theory will become actuality.  If there isn’t actual demand, then the residences will end up being sold to people who aren’t currently part of the Davis community.

    2. — The land use footprint of this proposal is very inefficient.  The senior community at URC is three stories tall.  That means each acre of land in the complex supports three times as many seniors as this proposal.

  2. Dianne C Tobias

    As a prior critic of the DV not listing bios or author identification for articles, I am glad to see ‘press release’ associated with this article however I think it would be more informative to allow  readers to evaluate content to list the identity of the press releases when the DV published them. What do you think?

    1. Tia Will

      Hi Dianne

      Agree. I personally would support the statement of press release + the identity of the sponsor of that release. I do not believe that it is necessary to label as advertising.

    2. David Greenwald

      I’m fine with doing that.  Advertising implies we got paid for it, so I won’t label it as such unless we did.  But I will have more of a label at the bottom.

  3. Howard P

    Given the door to door distribution of flyers the other day in Mace Ranch, you should assume the same cast listed there… I could could scan ours, but have no clue how to “upload” it here…

  4. Alan Miller

    I read the headline with the word “Active Adults” and immediately thought:

    “This isn’t another one of those ads by the developers of that senior housing project being disguised as a ‘senior life in Davis’ article designed to build a perceived-demand in the community to justify their project, is it?”

    It was.

    I then experienced the involuntary regurgitation of a small portion of last night’s dinner.

  5. Alan Miller

    BTW, there is no author listed.  All it says is “press release”.  It has to be press-released from someone, or some organization.  Given that it is a thinly-veiled ad disguised as a public-interest story, it should at least have the name of the organization that released it.  Or did God himself do it?

  6. Eric Gelber

    Other things the press release doesn’t answer:

    What is an “active adult”? What adults does this exclude? Are the housing needs of non-active(?) adults less of a priority?

    Active adults apparently want “quiet [meaning families with children and students are not welcome], single-story ADA-accessible housing.” Are there not younger adults and other families who want and need the same features?

    Affordable housing and accessible housing are in short supply throughout the community–even for those who don’t have as much time to do volunteer work with nonprofits. Segregated, exclusionary housing is not the way to address those needs.

      1. Eric Gelber

        Exactly. Which would be a violation of state and federal fair housing law prohibiting discrimination against people with disabilities and housing for people with disabilities.  This is why you rarely see housing being advertised for “active adults.”

  7. Keith O

    “If we don’t plan ahead to ensure housing for those active adults, we could lose this precious resource of time, talent and treasure,” said Dave Taormino, a longtime Davis real estate developer and proponent of the West Davis Active Adult Community.

    A proponent allright, he also happens to be the developer of the proposed project.

    1. Alan Miller

      I look forward to Mr. Taormino’s future articles on solving housing issues for :

      1. Students

      2. Inactive adults

      3. Undocumented immigrants

      4. The Homeless

      5. Turkeys

      These articles will of course include interviews with charming local residents in each of these groups, who support more housing for themselves and others like them.

      . . . as built by Dave Taormino.

  8. Jim Hoch

    I I’ll support this if it means redeveloping Rancho Yolo for all people. We have way too much of the city footprint dedicated to exclusionary housing now.

    1. Howard P

      Second that, for purposes of discussion.  Not convinced as to merits, but modular housing, sometimes characterized as ‘trailers’, but they are nowhere near the same, might be exactly a short/medium term solution…

      Quonset huts were student housing on the “Aggie Villa” site, right after WWII (and, Korea), to accommodate veterans using their GI bill benefits to attend UCD.  As far as I know, no veterans died or were injured with that housing… it worked. [roughly, 1947-early 1960’s]

      Not aesthetic, but serves a need… a critical need.

      1. Howard P

        Yeah, it was ‘exclusionary housing’… fit for males, but not females… not for those ‘of means’… the latter groups were “too special” in those days, and got to live in the dorms…  we need to break down those barriers…

    2. Alan Miller

      I I’ll support this if it means redeveloping Rancho Yolo

      Why so much hate on Rancho Yolo?  I noticed this from you in the Sterling discussions as well.  Do you not like trailers in Davis?

        1. Jim Hoch

          “Rancho Yolo is a fantastic community that fills a real need in Davis.”


          The Escalade is a fantastic vehicle that fills a real need as well. It’s also hugely inefficient and seems out of place in an environmentally friendly community.


          Seems hard to advocate for both climate change action and Rancho Yolo.

        2. Alan Miller

          I don’t like walled cities much either.  It’s certainly not the only place in Davis with a poorly-though-out bike circulation pattern (I could name a few places) as far as citywide biking.  I’m curious how the density really is compared to an outlying Davis suburb, as trailers don’t take up much of a footprint.

          What it does do is provide actual low-income housing that people can afford to live in, rather than the “Affordable Housing” government subsidy/quota game that creates all sorts of inequity/inefficiency.  I find it so odd those that wish to dispose of low-income housing and replace it with Low-Income Housing.  Actually, it makes total sense when you “follow the money”.

          A tumor?  Again, this seems a bit hateful.  I am amazed on this blog the number of times that comments are made by certain commenters that basically say, “I don’t like your neighborhood — it should be changed / eliminated into something I think is better”.

          WTF People!!!???!!!


        3. Jim Hoch

          The Rancho Yolo crowd does not seem to be shy about showing up at the council and complaining that someone may ride a bike down 5th which would impair their quality of life.

        4. Alan Miller

          The Rancho Yolo crowd does not seem to be shy about showing up at the council and complaining

          And your reaction is they need to be wiped off the map?

        5. Jim Hoch

          “You dislike El Macero or Binning on the same grounds?”

          Both are peripheral and I barely notice them. I would for advocate for moving the city yards on 5th next to the Binning tract. There would likely be remediation problems on the city yard though it would make excellent housing.


          Both locations share a path through downtown to the university.

    3. Howard P

      Alan… please note my line about “for purposes of discussion”…  I believe Rancho Yolo serves a niche…  I also believe we should discuss duplicating/expanding that model elsewhere… or similar housing that would serve short/medium term needs…

      If Ranch Yolo was ‘redeveloped’ (maybe a 0.01% chance) it should be mitigated by a 3:1 replacement elsewhere in Davis City limits, as they exist. Next to similar transit lines.

      1. Alan Miller

        We have ‘stacked parking’ now, can we have ‘stacked trailer parks’?  That would eliminate the ‘inefficient use of land’ argument!

        1. Jim Hoch

          “Podium construction—also known as pedestal or platform construction—typically includes multiple stories of light framing over a single- or multi-story podium of another construction style, which may include retail as well as above- or below-grade

          parking levels. Concrete podiums are the most common, though steel podiums also exist. Although not considered ‘podiums’ under the IBC, using a heavy timber system to separate parking from light wood-frame residential units above is also gaining popularity. The upper slab of a concrete podium typically acts as both a fire separation and structural transfer slab for the framing above. If built using the special provisions of IBC 510.2, this construction approach allows increased density with additional stories, maximizing the use of smaller urban lots while benefitting from wood-frame cost and speed of construction advantages.

          Common configurations include four or five stories of residential use over retail, commercial, office and/or parking, and six or even seven stories of residential use, including the podium level(s), with subterranean parking. According to Tim Smith, four stories of residential occupancy over a non-residential podium will achieve densities similar to wrap-around. With five stories of residential units, density can increase to 100 to 120 units per acre. An additional 20 units per acre are achievable when the podium levels include residential occupancy.

          Density can be increased even further with a mezzanine, which provides additional unit square footage, allowing potential for more units. Mezzanines are popularly used in upper floor units and can add an additional five units per acre. Creative architects have been known to get as many as 165 units per acre from podium construction by also manipulating grade to incorporate daylight basements or pursuing two full levels of above-ground podium. (This is explicitly allowed under the 2015 IBC. Under the 2012 IBC, it must be achieved through an alternate means and methods request but is not uncommon in certain parts of the country.) In a presentation given at the 2013 American Institute of Architects conference, Smith said this level of density competes with Type I structures of 10 and 11 stories, but at roughly one-third the cost per square foot. “

        2. Jim Hoch

          “specified 3 stories” Howard, you are correct. Though I am counting less parking than they include and smaller units. Can we agree on 75 with lower than usual parking.

  9. Ron

    Alan:  “Actually, it makes total sense when you “follow the money”.

    This phrase sounds familiar.  Vaguely remember someone using this phrase, to describe various situations.  🙂

Leave a Reply

X Close

Newsletter Sign-Up

X Close

Monthly Subscriber Sign-Up

Enter the maximum amount you want to pay each month
Sign up for