VIP’s Statement on George Floyd and Police Brutality

The last few days have been heartbreaking for those of us at Valley Improvement Projects. In late 2008, years before starting VIP, our co-founders also started “Modesto CopWatch,” a group with the goal of ending police harassment and abuse of our local community members, especially young men of color who we had witnessed be routinelyContinue reading “VIP’s Statement on George Floyd and Police Brutality”


VIP Presents the Stanislaus County Social & Environmental Justice Forum – June 22nd!

Valley Improvement Projects is proud to present the 1st Annual Stanislaus County Social and Environmental Justice Forum Schedule 9-9:30am – Check-in, light breakfast provided 9:30-10am – Welcome and Ice-Breaker 10-10:45am – Panel 1: Environmental Justice in Air, Water, and Land Use Summary: Substantial portions of Stanislaus County are in the highest percentile for drinking water,Continue reading “VIP Presents the Stanislaus County Social & Environmental Justice Forum – June 22nd!”

VIP Honors Co-Founder and Local Organizers at First Annual Community Empowerment Dinner

On Friday, March 23rd 2018 Valley Improvement Projects (VIP), a grassroots organization that builds community on social and environmental issues based in Modesto, hosted the first annual Community Empowerment Dinner where they presented the “Emiliano Amor Mataka Award,” named in honor of a VIP co-founder who lost his life in a car accident in 2015.Continue reading “VIP Honors Co-Founder and Local Organizers at First Annual Community Empowerment Dinner”

VIP Protests Lenient Plea Deal for ex-Sheriff

“Justice for Rita! Jail for Abbey!” On Tuesday, June 28th, VIP members and several other members of the community protested the decisions of Stanislaus Judge Ricardo Cordova and District Attorney Birgit Fladager to NOT send corrupt Sheriff Kari Abbey to jail by dropping her murder charge and giving her a ridiculous plea-deal of probation, communityContinue reading “VIP Protests Lenient Plea Deal for ex-Sheriff”

In Memory: Emiliano Amor Mataka 1980-2015

“The greatest philanthropists of all time are not the Rockefellers, the Carnegies, the Gates or the Buffets, they are the nameless, everyday people who display the best of humanity daily, with the fewest of resources and with extreme grace. The poorest people give the most, don’t think you need monetary wealth to make an impact.Continue reading “In Memory: Emiliano Amor Mataka 1980-2015”

VIP Featured in ‘Stanislaus Connections’

Valley Improvement Projects was recently featured in Stanislaus Connections, the semi-monthly publication of the Modesto Peace/Life Center. Check out for more information about the Peace/Life Center in downtown Modesto. You can read all the back issues of Stanislaus Connections at Read the latest edition featuring VIP and information on the Peace/Life Center’s Homeless ID ProjectContinue reading “VIP Featured in ‘Stanislaus Connections’”

V.I.P. 2015!

After closing down the Valley Improvement Projects Community Center for Social & Environmental Justice in late 2014 V.I.P. volunteers have been working to determine the best way forward and ensure we stay true to our mission statement of improving the quality of life of underrepresented and marginalized residents of California’s Central Valley by promoting social andContinue reading “V.I.P. 2015!”

After a Year, VIP Community Center Closes Its Doors, Organization Will Struggle On

It’s been almost exactly one year since the Grand Opening of the Valley Improvement Projects Community Center for Social and Environmental Justice. Valley Improvement Projects, as a concept, began about two years ago with several friends, not co-workers or business associates or colleagues, but first and foremost friends. These friends envisioned an organization that providedContinue reading “After a Year, VIP Community Center Closes Its Doors, Organization Will Struggle On”

V.I.P. Featured in Modesto Bee’s Q&A

Valley Improvement Projects was recently featured in the Modesto Bee’s “Monday Question and Answer” column. Check out the article here (or see text below):   MONDAY Q&A: Modesto nonprofit takes on social, environmental issues By Erin Tracy etracy@modbee.comJune 29, 2014 By Erin Tracy The_Modesto_Bee Six Stanislaus County residents with different visions but the sameContinue reading “V.I.P. Featured in Modesto Bee’s Q&A”

Your Donation Can Help V.I.P. Stay Open!

ATTENTION V.I.P. SUPPORTERS!! We are currently awaiting future grant funding and may NEED TO COVER ONE MONTH OF RENT on our own and hopefully with HELP FROM YOU!! OUR GOAL IS TO RAISE $900 BY JULY 1ST so that we can KEEP V.I.P. OPEN until we receive expected grant funding in July. ANY SMALL ORContinue reading “Your Donation Can Help V.I.P. Stay Open!”