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About Us

It is our mission to end and prevent homelessness in Santa Cruz County.

For over 25 years, Families In Transition has been serving members of Santa Cruz County by providing temporary rental assistance and case management to families who are unstably housed or at imminent risk of becoming homeless.

Our case managers work closely with program participants to identify challenges to housing stability and come up with individualized housing stability plans to ensure client success.


founders of Families In Transition of Santa Cruz County

FIT Founding Fathers & Mothers:

Bill Watts, Desiree Sanchez,

Jim Narragon, & Irma Perez


Our Staff

Board Members

Vanessa Quiroz-Carter

Board President

Vanessa Quiroz-Carter

Vanessa Quiroz-Carter was born and raised in Watsonville. She graduated from University of California, Berkeley, with a B.A. in English Literature in 2009.  Vanessa received a Master's Degree from the California State University, East Bay in 2018. She currently works as an Adjunct Professor at Hartnell Community College in Salinas. Vanessa is passionate about community engagement and has been an active community member since her youth. Vanessa recognizes the serious need for safe, affordable housing in our community and believes everyone deserves the dignity of a safe place to call home. By sitting on the Board for Families in Transition, Vanessa hopes to assist in their mission to end and prevent homelessness in Santa Cruz County. In addition to serving on the Board for Families in Transition, Vanessa also currently serves as a Commissioner for the Santa Cruz County Women's Commission, and the Parks and Recreation Commission in Watsonville.

Veronica Schultz

Board Vice President

Veronica Schultz

Born in Chile and raised in the USA, Veronica moved to the Santa Cruz area twenty years ago after graduating from Mary Washington University with a BA in Philosophy & Religious Studies. Professionally she has extensive experience in the insurance industry - ten years as an Underwriter of 501c3 nonprofits and currently as an Insurance Risk Analyst at Granite Construction Inc., in Watsonville. In her free time Veronica enjoys community service, getting her hands dirty in the garden and kayaking with her partner. 

Veronica joined the FIT Board in 2019 and currently serves as Board Treasurer.  She believes deeply in the ability of people to positively affect their communities and is honored to support FIT as a board member.

Robin West

Board Secretary

Robin West

Robin was born in Fort Ord, California and traveled around the United States as an ‘Army brat’. She moved back to the Central Coast as an adult and has lived in the area for over thirty years. Robin graduated from Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington with a BA Degree in Political Economy and from the Fashion Institute in Los Angeles, California with an AA Degree in Fashion Design. Robin has a history of working with non-profit agencies serving families with low-incomes and people with developmental disabilities. She currently works as the Student Retention Coordinator (including Homeless Student Liaison and Basic Needs) with Cabrillo College.

Robin has lived experience as a homeless mother of three children. She has been involved with the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Project and the HEAP/CESH emergency housing grant. She is dedicated to the goal of ending and preventing homelessness in Santa Cruz County. And as a Board member, has a vison of creating more affordable housing units that are inclusive, environmentally sustainable and beautiful in design- similar to the Backyard Homes Project in Los Angeles.

In her free time, Robin likes to be outdoors at the beach or hiking in the mountains, dancing to R&B music, gardening for medicinal and dye plants, being creative, and spending time with family and friends.

Mission Statement
Mission Statement

To join with other service providers in a community-wide effort to end and prevent homelessness in Santa Cruz County. Toward this end, Families In Transition works in partnership with families who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless with housing opportunities and by providing participants with referrals to employment, training and educational resources to assist them in becoming both self-reliant and interdependent members of the community.

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