By Travis Mitchell
“Thank you! Thank You! I love you guys!” were the words of appreciation by 81 year-old John Mazzilli in May 2014 when HopeLink of Southern Nevada, Civitan Car Club Las Vegas, and Sun Auto teamed up to service his car. Mr. Mazzilli’s 1981 Cadillac Eldorado was unsafe to drive as a result of poor brakes. Because Mr. Mazzilli is on a very fixed income and unable to work, he wasn’t able to afford the repairs himself. Through the partnership between Civitan Car Club Las Vegas and HopeLink, his name was given to the car club. Then, using finances earned from their fundraising events, Civitan Car Club was able to pay for repairs through a negotiated arrangement with Sun Auto, one of a number of automotive service shops in the Las Vegas Valley that the club has recently begun working with.
“It’s going to be a great partnership” said Tom Schnitker of Civitan. “HopeLink has a number of people with automotive service needs, and our car club’s focus is to provide the resources to fill those needs”. Mr. Schnitker noted that overall, Mr. Mazzilli’s car was in really good shape, for it being a 1981 model year. “There are a few other repairs which we’ll work on over the next couple of month’s” said Schnitker. “His brakes made the car unsafe to drive, so those had to be the first priority.”
According to HopeLink and Civitan Car Club, there was a project they had hoped to complete earlier in the year. However, the needs involved in that project were just too big and the funds were not available. Mike Brown-Cestero, Civitan Car Club Las Vegas president, noted that the club is barely a year old, having celebrated it’s 1 year anniversary on June 6, 2014 and that the prior project would have cost an estimated $5000.00. He said that the club members and board of directors felt that it would have been better to buy a replacement car, but hadn’t raised enough funds yet.
To make a donation to Civitan Car Club of Las Vegas, a 501(c)(4) charity, to help further their community service cause, use the “Donate” button in the top right corner of this page.
To learn more about Civitan Car Club Las Vegas, use the “About Civitan Car Club Las Vegas” link below.
HopeLink of Southern Nevada began in 1991 in an effort to provide a support net to assist the working poor in Henderson. It has grown from an all-volunteer group to one with 13 full-time staff. Eleven of these staff members provide direct service to the community and those needing help. These committed staff members are here because they want to better the community in which they live. They each realize that difficult times can happen to anyone.
Civitan Car Club Las Vegas was formed in the spring of 2013 as the 4,024th chartered club of Civitan International, a civic organization founded in 1917 in Birmingham, Alabama. Civitan Car Club Las Vegas raises funds to perform local car related service projects. A small percentage of funds also go to support the work of the Civitan International Research Center at the University of Alabama, a world-class research facility committed to finding treatments and cures for developmental diseases such as autism, Down Syndrome, epilepsy, and many more. The club hosts a number of annual fundraising events such as their ‘Merican Muscle Car Show, Drive for Five Poker Run, annual Easter egg hunt, and more. Civitan Car Club is powered by the enthusiasm and commitment of the humble volunteer. With the collective effect of just a few hours per month, the club aims to change the world – one car at a time.
Founded in Phoenix in 1978, Sun Auto Service is a family owned and operated auto repair company. Mechanics are ASE Certified to perform vehicle repairs — from basic oil changes to transmission overhauls. Sun Auto is a proud member of the Better Business Bureau and guarantees all work in writing.