Interview of Helen Alvarez
by Brian A.
Q: What is your full name?
A: Helen Cecilia Alvarez
Q: Were you named after anyone?
A: Yes, my middle name, after St. Cecilia. St. Cecilia was killed for being a Christian.
Q: Where were you born?
A: Edwards Air Force Base, California (Almost in the elevator!)
Q: What are your parent's names?
A: Kent and Marthe Methmann
Q: What countries/states/cities did you grow up in?
A: USA - New Mexico/Arizona/California/Europe-France. My dad was in the military, so we traveled a lot.
Q: What do you remember about the house you lived in?
A: When I was 4, we moved to Carpinteria. The first house we lived in was on Concha Loma St., right across from the beach. I remember the beach most. We loved to go to the beach, BBQ hot dogs and play in the sand. The first school I went to was Main Elementary School.
Q: What do you remember most about you childhood?
A: Growing up in Carpinteria was a lot of fun. We spent countless hours, climbing trees, playing in the park, building forts, collecting pollywogs in the creeks, playing on the beaches, and building sand castles.
Q: What is your background?
A: Raised in Carpintera. Attended all schooling here. Went to SB City College. Majored in Business. Worked in accounting for 15+ years. I have two boys, Brian age 10, and Eric age 12. They go to school in Carpinteria, participate in all sports; baseball, basketball, & football. They are my greatest joy.
Q: Tell me about your family?
A: I was the second of four kids. Two brothers, one sister. When I was a kid we had lots of pets; dogs, bunnies, birds, chickens, guinea pigs, hamsters, snakes, mice and fish. My dad worked in the medical field; he was the first male nurse in Santa Barbara County. He received his training in the Navy and Air Force as a medical assistant, mostly riding in an ambulance.
Q: What is your family background, personal history (grandparents, great grandparents, relatives) and their roles in the community?
A: My father's side of the family is from Germany. They run a fur factory and it is still in operation today, it is called Methmann . My mother's side of the family is from Morocco. They are French and speak fluent French.
Q: Are there some other people that have contributed to your success as a community leader? How have they influenced you?
A: I worked for the Carpinteria Boy's and Girl's Club for four years as the Arts & Crafts Director. This position gave me the opportunity to get to know the local children. Working closely with the kids not only opened my heart to their needs, it also helped me grow with this community. Working at the Club, brought me together with local business people, volunteers and parents. Together we helped raise some very special children. Today, I work in the Carpinteria Unified School District, at the District Office. Although I do not work with the children directly, I can, however, continue to watch them grow. I see how vital programs like these are to the children as well as the rest of the community. Without after school programs, our children would be on the streets, getting into who knows what.
Q: Could you describe your profession to me? What do you do at your job?
A: I am the District Clerk. I am responsible for answering the phones, greeting people at the front counter, and helping out with various duties around the office.
Q: What is your address and phone of your business?
A: Carpinteria Unified School District
Q: Describe the activities in which you are currently involved?
A: I like to cook, sew, paint, walk, talk, but most of all I like to go for motorcycle rides! I also like working with my church. We go on missionary trips. I like to go on these trips. It gives me a very good feeling, working with people in need. We help them medically, by offering free medical treatment (a doctor in Mexico leads our group). We also offer free eyeglasses for those with vision problems. At the same time, we ask them if they know Jesus, and would like to have a personal relationship with Him. The response is very overwhelming. I get to see miracles happen, like the one's in the Bible. Through our team we help heal the sick, and the blind get sight! We see lives pulled together, where there is little food, and little hope.
This page was written by Brian A.
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