Our Grounds is a non-profit corporation that runs a vocational training site and coffee shop for adults and adolescents with intellectual and cognitive disabilities.
Adults have an opportunity to learn and be employed in an educational and inclusive environment. Trainees will learn skill sets from therapists, restaurateurs and other professionals in our community.
Vanessa Vila: President
Vanessa Vila was born and raised in Miami, Florida. She and her husband have been married for three years.
Ms. Vila earned her undergraduate degree in Elementary Education at Florida International University in 2010. She then went on to complete her master’s degree in Science of Occupational Therapy at Barry University in 2013.
Ms. Vila has worked for over 12 years serving children, adolescents and adults with disabilities. First, as a special education teacher in the private school setting and now as an Occupational Therapist. In 2016, Ms. Vila started Fun Foundations, LLC providing occupational therapy services and social skill services to children, adolescents and adults with special needs in Miami, FL. More recently, working in the field with transitioning teens, she realized the enormous need for employment and training oppertunities for adolescents and adults with special needs in Miami. This inspired her idea for Our Grounds.
Eric Huertas: Vice President
Eric Huertas was born and raised in Miami, Florida. He lives in Miami with his wife of three years. Eric graduated from Florida International University in 2012 with a degree in Hospitality Management.
Mr. Huertas has worked in restaurant management for over 10 years. Previously, Mr. Huertas worked with Matchbox Food Group. Throughout his 9 years there, Mr. Huertas helped open five new restaurants as part of the management team. More recently, Mr. Huertas opened his own restaurant in Miami, FL , Local Pie.
Throughout his career, Mr. Huertas has volunteered his time helping other restaurateurs achieve their goals. While working with Matchbox Food Group, he contributed to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
Juan Carlos Vila: Treasurer
Born in Cuba, Juan Carlos studies of veterinary medicine were interrupted when he had an opportunity to move to this country at the age of 19 years old. Juan Carlos has since then lived in Miami-Dade County. He has been married for over 20 years and has four children.
Mr. Vila has over thirty years of experience in the green industry. Most of his experience was as the owner Vila and Son, Inc., an award winning, state wide landscaping company with over 705 employees. More recently, Mr. Vila is Chief Operations Officer at Visual Scape, Inc.
Mr. Vila’s passion for community and volunteer work have led him to work on local and international projects. Juan C. Vila has been an Executive Director of the Latin Builders Association in Miami, FL for over 10 years. In the past, he was a chairman of Florida International University’s Honors College Advisory Board. At an international level, Mr. Vila was chosen to participate in the Joint Civilian Orientation Conference of the United States Department of Defense (JCOC) where he traveled abroad to visit troops and accompanied them in community building missions.
Alexandra Sirven: Secretary
Alexandra Sirven was born in Long Island, New York and moved to Miami, Florida at the age of 5. Ms. Sirven attended high school at Westminster Christian and graduated as a member of the Spanish and Science National Honor Society.
Currently, Ms. Sirven is pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Biology, with an interest in pre-med, at Florida International University where she has been on the dean’s list for the past three semesters.
Ms. Sirven has done more than a year of volunteer work at Miami Children’s Hospital catering to the needs of patients throughout their stay. Additionally, she has extensive work experience at West Kendall Obstetrics and Gynecology where she has worked every summer since 2013 as an administrative clerk, receptionist, and front desk.
Dr. Viviana Sirven: Director
Dr. Sirven lives in Miami, Florida with her husband and two children. Dr. Viviana Sirven was born in Cuba and obtained her bachelor’s degree from the University of Miami. She received her medical degree from the Universidad Autonoma de Centro America. She has been practicing medicine in South Florida since 2002.
Dr. Sirven treats both pediatric and adult patients in her state of the art facility, Sirven Associates Allergy and Asthma Center. She is a member of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology and The American Academy of Pediatrics. Last year, Dr. Sirven was a co-chair of the West Kendall Women’s Auxiliary Council in Miami, FL.