January 24, 2014
I reached out to Art and Mary Olvera when my best girlfriend needed flooring. She had previously contracted with a flooring company, and through many missteps, they never finished the project. She was without flooring in the hallway, her bedroom and master bathroom. After mustering the nerve, I emailed Art and explained the situation. He responded that he'd get back to me when some funds had been raised. At first I thought maybe he was blowing me off. But I was thrilled to get his email a couple weeks later saying they were ready to get a contractor out to Marion's house to estimate the job.
Since then, we've had dinner with them at Denny's (where a portion of your tab will go to their non-profit Life Goes On). Their positive, can-do attitude is amazing, not to mention their generosity. Marion is thrilled with her new flooring, and we are all so grateful. Consider going to their website to see what they're accomplishing and maybe make a donation to these kind people so they can continue to help those in need.
June 3, 2013
I wish to commend your organization! We were at a loss how my mother would be able to return to her home without required safety items and being on a fixed income. The railing that was installed to the front door is not only safe, it is stunning! The quality and appearance is exceptional! Your organization also found a pull bar for the tub. Since the home is a mobile, there wasn't any structure to attach pull bars. You researched for a pull bar that fits the tub itself.
Our hat is off to you both, your contractor Steve and crew. All of you were understanding, compassionate, on time, and excellent communication. My mother is thankful to be back in her own home thanks to your organization.
We pray Life Goes On will continue to be of service to all. You are an asset to the area.
May 1, 2013
Art is a good friend of mine who I met through Joni and Friends. Him and his crew are doing great things through his non-profit. Check out the INTERVIEW.... see below, If you know of anyone who may need assistance on accessing their home or modifications within their home, let me know and I will forward to Art and get them on the list (or call Art).
If you are interested in making a contribution feel free to contact Art. His group REALLY helps people, they get in there and get the job done and seriously make a difference. In the last 3 years since I have been involved they have completed several "life changing" projects. Just had to pass this on cause I know you guys can relate.
Alyssa Singh – Imani Care International
February 26, 2013
Dear Art & Mary,
I don’t know if you remember me but I was a student in Bruce’s class this summer when you came to share. I have not forgotten about you guys and you have been such an inspiration to me as I have ventured down the road of starting Imani Care International. Though our causes support very different populations in different countries, we both share a grassroots approach to helping people by restoring their dignity and giving them hope to go on. My New Year’s Resolution was to support other nonprofits/charitable causes by collecting up my small bills ($1s, $5s) each month and making a donation, one per month.
February is Life Goes On – fitting as it is a month of love and compassion, and Art & Mary – you are two of the most loving individuals I have ever met! It’s not much but I wanted to support what you are doing in a small way. I love getting your email updates and I hope you continue to have all you need to help many more families.
Love & Blessings,
P.S. – We got business cards... yay! Still awaiting our 501(c)(3) status...
Tamra Coates Testimony
January 22, 2013
I saw the wonderfully written article about Life Goes On around Christmas of 2012. I immediately called the provided number and spoke to Art and Mary. I described my sister's situation and her need for their services. In about two weeks time I met their contractor at my sister's house. Within one week , I received a call from Art who stated he had the necessary funds for a ramp. From the request to the completion it took less than one month.
My sister is very happy with her new ramp. I planned to call Art and Mary to thank them, however Art beat me to the call. He wanted to ensure we were satisfied and hoped to set up a time to meet my sister. I doubt if I would get that kind of friendly follow through from a paid contracting service let alone from an agency who sought the necessary funds, designed and built a ramp that will last for a long, long time, all for free for my sister. Thank you to Life Goes On, Art and Mary.
Faces of Christmas: Art and Mary Olvera
December 23, 2012
GARY KAZANJIAN/THE FRESNO BEE
Art and Mary Olvera, both 43, operate Life Goes On-Home Improvement, a company that helps people with physical disabilities.
The basics: Art and Mary Olvera, both 43, operate Life Goes On-Home Improvement Inc., a Fresno nonprofit that modifies homes of the elderly and people with disabilities. Art is the CEO. Mary works full time as a legal secretary and helps with the nonprofit in her spare time.
What they do: Working with a contractor, the Olveras rely on donations and discounts from businesses to widen doorways, make shower modifications, and install ramps and grab bars. They started the nonprofit in May 2009. They have completed 10 projects and have five more in the works.
Why they do it: Art has been a quadriplegic since 1988 when he was injured as a passenger in a drunken-driving crash. He handled billing and payroll for a company until he was laid off in July. That allowed him to work full time on the nonprofit projects. "I needed some substance in my life," he said. "I guess it took me being pushed out of my job to get to this point."
The turning point: About six years ago, the Fresno couple lived in a condominium where they asked to have their parking stall assigned on the end of a row of vehicles so Art could enter their car more easily. The Olveras said they were told they had to pay for the cost of a disabled parking stall. "We go to concerts and baseball games where we always run into obstacles, but that was the kicker for me," he said. That inspired the Olveras to help others.
Details, details: The Olveras reach out to rehabilitation centers to identify people who are returning to their homes and in need of modifications. "Everybody says, 'How do you do it?' " Mary said. "I say, 'How do we not do it?' This is what lights my fire."
What others say: Bruce Whitsitt, who met the Olveras when he was teaching a class at Clovis Adult School on starting a nonprofit, said Art has used his experiences and struggles to help others. Whitsitt said the Olveras complement each other. "With him, there's this quiet determination," he said. "She's very vivacious and positive."
How you can help: Anyone wanting to donate can call the Olveras at (559) 313-4313 or visit their website at lgo-hi.com.
March 15, 2012
The purpose of this message is to record the assistance and extraordinary kindness which Life Goes On and Denny's Restaurant (Kings Canyon and Clovis in Fresno) have shown us.
January 20, 2012 was seemingly just another day to me. About 8:00 p.m. I pulled my shoe off after the day's work and noticed a small cut on the bottom of my toe. Thinking it was just another small wound and nothing to be overly concerned about, I just ignored it. January 25, 2012 found me at Community Hospital emergency room with half of my left foot severely infected. My very life was in jeopardy. I was immediately taken to surgery. A few hours later, I awoke to find most of my foot had been amputated. My wife and daughter were thanking God for sustaining my life.
I spent over a week recuperating in the hospital; then another five weeks at home in bed. I am a self-employed math tutor. Without being able to function, we had no income from my work.
About the end of November, 2011 my wife had noticed a Life Goes On flyer at Denny's Restaurant; Kings Canyon and Clovis. She felt the need to write their information down. After my surgery she contacted Life Goes On. Art and Mary were wonderful, as well as was Steve, their contractor.
We had nothing to pay toward obtaining a sorely needed wheelchair ramp at our home. David Rios, the general manager at Denny's took donations in our behalf as did others. Life Goes On gathered these and built our ramp.
The best quality materials were used and the workmanship is superb. It is truly a blessing and a reflection of the passion Life Goes On has for helping those in need.
We are honored to offer this as a testimonial. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.
David and Carole Dzerigian