InnVision Shelter Network (IVSN) has been accepted into the FastSigns MetamorphoSIGN contest! FastSigns is donating $5,000 worth of new signage to the nonprofit with the most votes between August 20 and August 31.
The unification of InnVision and Shelter Network last month, along with our new logo and expanded area, means that IVSN could really benefit from the subsidized signage for our buildings and vehicles.
To help InnVision Shelter Network win $5,000 for new signage vote online! It’s super quick and you can vote every day until the 31st.
How to Vote:
1. Click Here to be directed to the contest site.
2. Register to vote by filling in your name, city, and email address.
3. Once logged in, on the left side under “Search Entries”, type in “Burlingame” and click “Search”.
4. Under the InnVision Shelter Network entry, click the red “Vote” button.
3. Vote for InnVision Shelter Network once a day until August 31st.
Thank you so much for your support!
InnVision Shelter Network recently held an art contest among the children and youth living at our transitional facilities. Over 45 young artists submitted artwork in two categories and 10 participants won gift cards for their outstanding pictures. We were overjoyed by the quality of all the pictures and choosing winners was a tough task. Below are the winning pieces.
Congratulations to all of the artists!
Last week InnVision Shelter Network’s Summer Splash Camp partnered with local nonprofit Harper for Kids (HFK) to engage children living at IVSN with off-site educational opportunities. Harper for Kids, a nonprofit organization founded by former WTA player Peanut Harper and her husband Tim, is committed to cultivating, inspiring, and developing leadership skills and healthy character development in children by providing education and enrichment programs and activities.
Last Sunday IVSN families were invited to a book reading hosted by the Bank of the West Classic and HFK at Barnes & Noble in San Mateo. HFK’s co-founder Peanut Louie Harper and WTA pro Sloane Stephens read from legendary UCLA Coach John Wooden’s children’s book, “Inch and Miles: The Journey to Success” which Peanut also collaborated on. IVSN families and children enjoyed the reading and hearing from Peanut and Sloane.
And on the following Monday Harper for Kids sponsored tickets for children in IVSN’s Summer Splash Camp to attend the Bank of the West Classic Tennis Tournament at Stanford University. The kids were introduced to Coach Dick Gould, a famous tennis coach who has worked at Stanford for the past 38 years, as well as Vania King, Wimbledon doubles champion from 2010 who has been on the tennis pro circuit since she was 16. Campers also got to watch a tennis match and received bracelets and towels as gifts before leaving. After the match campers discussed the theme of the event- the “Pyramid of Success” model created by Coach John Wooden celebrating good sportsmanship, hard-work, dedication, and being healthy.
On Saturday IVSN campers had the opportunity to cultivate their own tennis skills during the Harper for Kids Inch & Miles Sportsmanship Tennis Festival. Children went to the Pacific Athletic Club to learn to play tennis with Peanut Harper. The kids learned five more aspects from Coach Wooden’s Pyramid of Success; they worked on cooperation, hard work, fitness, skill, and team work. Although it was every campers first time playing tennis, they had a great time and loved the new sport!
“The strong collaboration between nonprofit partners, financial donors, and volunteers has delivered programs and opportunities that engage school-aged children and provide them with experiences they would otherwise never have access to,” says Lewis Eggleston, a Children’s Services Coordinator at IVSN.
IVSN helps Steve Carey get back on his feet and give back to those in need.
Steve Carey grew up with an entrepreneurial spirit like so many in the Bay Area. At age 12, he started working as a newspaper delivery boy. He graduated from Mills High School, San Francisco State, and University of San Francisco. In the late 1980′s he launched his own mortgage finance company and by the early 1990′s he owned several properties and lived an idyllic life in a home with a picturesque view.
But in the mid-1990′s with the influx of competition from Wall Street, Steve’s mortgage business was wiped out. By 1999 he was filing for bankruptcy, surrendering his house and car, and moving to an apartment in San Mateo. Although he had downsized, Steve had steady work until the economic downfall in 2008.
When the recession hit in 2009, Steve’s income plummeted. He struggled to keep up with rent, but couldn’t. He was forced to give up his home and moved into a motel room, asking friends and family to help pay the bill. When their good will ran out, Steve became homeless, living in his car with his cat, Thelma, at a rest stop on highway 280. He turned to alcohol to numb his painful reality.
One morning, Steve woke up at San Mateo General Hospital after suffering an alcoholic grand mal seizure. His car was impounded, his cat was gone, and he did not have a dollar to his name.
A hospital social worker referred him to InnVision Shelter Network’s Maple Street Shelter. On the taxi ride to the shelter, Steve recalls being nothing short of terrified. It had been decades since he had last slept in a communal room with a group of people and he was expecting the worst.
“I couldn’t have been more wrong,” Steve remembers.
Soon after arriving at InnVision Shelter Network, he met with his case manager, who suggested a six-month, daily in-house drug and alcohol program. For the first time in his life, Steve acknowledged his drinking problem and entered treatment. His hope for a better life was coming back.
Keeping with his entrepreneurial spirit, Steve started a telemarketing business – right there at InnVision Shelter Network. He recruited four other people from the shelter as “employees,” and soon started making more than $1,000 a month.
Steve saved his money, committed to sobriety, and moved into permanent housing. Not long after graduating the transitional program, Steve was hired by InnVision Shelter Network as the property manager at the Vendome, a permanent supportive housing facility in downtown San Mateo. Steve now spends his days caring for the former chronically homeless and giving back to the organization that helped him regain self-sufficiency.
“Yes, InnVision Shelter Network provided me with food, clothing, and a roof over my head, but it was so much more than that,” said Steve. “I walked out of the shelter a much better person than when I walked in. Not just a better person than that man sitting in his car with his cat, but a better man than I had been all my life.”
It is my pleasure to announce a pivotal moment in our agency’s growth. As of July 1, 2012 InnVision the Way Home and Shelter Network have united as a single nonprofit dedicated to ending homelessness. InnVision Shelter Network is now one of the leading shelter/housing and supportive service providers in Northern California, supporting over 20,000 homeless men, women, and children annually.
The unified organization represents 64 combined years of serving homeless families and individuals across the Silicon Valley and San Francisco Peninsula. As a newly-combined agency, we will expand upon our work to end homelessness efficiently and effectively through our “Beyond the Bed” client service model – a proven methodology that has historically delivered a 90% success rate in returning program graduates to permanent housing and self-sufficiency.
The consolidation of Shelter Network and InnVision yields a robust organization with a $16M annual budget that incorporates both agencies’ best practices, multi-faceted programs, and extensive community partnerships. We are deeply grateful for Christine Burroughs’s leadership as the CEO of InnVision, and we look forward to her continued guidance as she transitions to retirement.
The integration of InnVision and Shelter Network brings significant benefit to the entire community and to our clients, including:
- Improved Client Outcomes to successfully and permanently end homelessness for thousands of families and individuals;
- Increased Capacity to serve even more clients – including numerous homeless Veterans and families – on their path back to self-sufficiency;
- Financial Strength with a broad portfolio of real estate assets and a healthy balance sheet to support the organization’s ongoing success; and
- Consolidated Operations that will increase efficiencies and maximize the impact of every donor dollar.
Integrating Shelter Network and InnVision to deliver these benefits will require significant financial investment from the community. As such, we invite you to unite with us in working to end homelessness by making a contribution to the Leadership Fund – a $6.5 million initiative to fund the unification, as well as capital projects, programmatic innovations, and community initiatives to expand and improve client services. To learn more, visit www.ivsn.org.
We look forward to sharing more about our vision for the new organization at two upcoming events: The Benefit Breakfast (traditionally hosted by Shelter Network) on October 4, 2012 at the Burlingame Hyatt Hotel, and the Silicon Valley Gala (historically the InnVision Fall Gala) planned for the spring of 2013.
To learn more about our consolidation, please visit www.ivsn.org. Please note that both Shelter Network and InnVision’s current websites will continue to exist for some time for the convenience of our clients, donors, and volunteers.
Thank you for supporting our mission to serve homeless families and individuals in the Silicon Valley/Peninsula community on their path to self-sufficiency. We look forward to your continued partnership as we embark on the next phase of growth as InnVision Shelter Network.
Please feel free to contact me if you want to discuss our consolidation and/or future plans. Thank you for your continued support.
Karae M. Lisle
CEO, InnVision Shelter Network
Lily (right) and Javier (left) with three of their sons
Last year, Shelter Network began a partnership with the LA-based non-proft A Good Night Sleep to provide brand new mattresses to dozens of formerly homeless families and individuals in the Bay Area.
While Shelter Network provides comprehensive supportive services that help homeless people return to permanent housing, many families are unable to fully furnish their new homes – either because of lack of funds or inability to transport larger furniture. Countless formerly homeless children and their parents sleep on floors or cots for months or even years after moving into permanent housing.
A Good Night Sleep, founded in 2010, is committed to ensuring that every formerly homeless individual has a bed to go home to. The organization supplies beds and bedding essentials to people making the transition from homelessness into permanent housing.
Shelter Network received 50 new beds from A Good Night Sleep last year, and recently received a second donation this spring. These beds were all given to individuals and families who have recently graduated from Shelter Network’s programs and are furnishing their new homes.
Lily, Javier, and their four sons were recipients of some of the beds received this year…
Just a few years ago, Lily, Javier and their family lived comfortably in their own home, with Lily working as a parent liaison at a local school and Javier employed in construction. “Our life was perfect,” Lily recalled, and like many families at Shelter Network, she never imagined they would become homeless.
But as the recession sunk in and construction jobs quickly dried up, Lily and Javier faced harder and harder decisions. Unable to keep up with their bills in the following months, they were forced to leave their home and move in to a small storage facility. But soon after they moved in, paint fumes from an adjacent unit began making the boys sick. With the family’s health in jeopardy, Lily and Javier decided to seek help.
The family moved into Shelter Network’s Redwood Family House. Lily said, “The staff treated us with respect and we learned so much from them.” Both Lily and Javier took advantage of every opportunity offered, including workshops on life skills and career development and even going back to school to take college classes in the evening.
The children also excelled at Shelter Network. Over one summer, 15-year-old Ignacio started a soccer camp for other children at Redwood Family House while his older brother, Jorge, maintained good grades, played football and worked as a teacher’s assistant. Program Director Ashley Hartoch recalls her experience with the family: “They were all incredibly driven and a delight to work with.”
Through hard work and dedication, Javier secured a full-time construction job, and after four months at Shelter Network, Lily and Javier saved more than $4,000. They moved out of Redwood Family House and into their new residence in Menlo Park. In May, the family received beds from A Good Nights Sleep to help furnish their new home, and Lily recently graduated from Cañada College with a degree in Human Resources, Community Health, and Family Development!
Thanks to Shelter Network’s supporters and A Good Night Sleep, Lily, Javier and their boys have beds to come home to every night.
Sophie Factor presents her Shelter Network display
Twelve-year-old Sophie Factor of Mountain View and the seventh grade class at Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School in Palo Alto chose to donate nearly $1,000 to Shelter Network in honor of the students’ Bar and Bat Mitzvahs.
Fourteen years ago, the Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School started their “Avodah La’Olam” program, which raises about $30,000 each year to support 30 local, national, and international non-profit organizations.
As part of Avodah La’Olam – which means “work for the world” – each member of the seventh grade class plans and participates in fundraising efforts, and then chooses one organization that they believe is doing important work. Each student does research on the organization’s mission, programs, and finances and presents their findings to their peers. Then the class collectively decides how the funds will be allocated to the organizations.
This year, Sophie Factor chose Shelter Network as her nonprofit organization. She presented the donation to Shelter Network during the school’s annual Celebration of Tzedakah. In her presentation, Sophie said that Shelter Network is one of the best organization’s around and that “they really know how to help those who are homeless right here in our community get housed and self-sufficient.” Sophie is looking forward to volunteering at Shelter Network when she turns 13!
Cheeto (center) with his speech
Inspired by the comforting power of animals, Riley’s Place provides a special space for children in need. The organization provides opportunities for children facing life threatening illness, disabilities, or homelessness to spend time with gentle therapy animals. Riley’s Place is a valuable partner of Shelter Network, giving children and their families a much-deserved break to play with animals, as well as build self-esteem, foster resiliency, and promote a sense of control.
Last week, a young boy living at Shelter Network, Cheeto (Eliceo Candejas), spoke at the Riley’s Place fundraiser about how the partnership with Shelter Network had a profound impact on his experience at Shelter Network’s transitional housing site, Haven Family House. Here is his speech that brought down the house:
Hi, my name is Cheeto. Thank you so much for letting Riley’s Place visit me at Haven Family House. The first time Riley’s Place came, I felt happy and excited. I only had one pet dog in my lifetime, so when I met the animals I felt good because of what they did and they seemed excited to see me. I think the animals made the kids feel special and happy.
We get to see the animals once a month. The only animals we normally see at Haven are bluebirds and squirrels. When the animals leave the kids feel lonely. My favorite animal was Sara the therapy dog. I liked her because she gets to have fun, we get to feed her, and brush her hair.
The first time I felt Robin the bunny’s hair, it felt like a pillow. I remember the miniature horses, Henry and Kapono. I liked looking at the site because I loved the horses, and I liked how they helped the horses that got hurt in accidents.
The animals make me feel excited and happy. I think that is how the other kids at Haven feel too. I felt sad when I had to leave Haven because I had lots of friends. Animals help people’s sadness and make them feel good. Thank you, Riley’s Place, for helping me and the kids at Haven.
For the second year, Shelter Network is offering Summer Splash Camp for our clients’ children. To learn more and get updates on our campers, please visit our Summer Splash Camp Blog.
Published May 1, 2012
Balitang America TV
By Henni Espinosa
DALY CITY, Calif. – Julie Soeganda and her family just could not seem to catch a break. She was laid off in 2009 as a library assistant for a law firm and has not found a full-time job since. She and her children lost their home. But the nonprofit organization, Shelter Network, came to their aid, giving them free temporary housing.
She said, “What do you do? You come to the community for help and they give you this opportunity to get back on your feet.”
Filipino-American Renato “Ray” Satorre is active in the Shelter Network, becoming the first Filipino to hold a board member position for the group, helping through monetary ways and through volunteer work.
He said, “God has given us a gift. And this gift, we have to share it them — share it in a positive way.”
Shelter Network said community leaders like Satorre have kept the organization alive.
Maria Duzon, spokesperson for the group said, “Shelter Network has been a community support organization, founded 25 years ago. Even from the start, community members have come together to meet the needs of families who are homeless and need support.”
Satorre, a 62-year old Manila-born Pinoy, has always been active in community work. This former student leader holds one of the highest appointed positions for a Filipino in California, as State Planning Commissioner.
He also became the first Filipino to become president of the Daly City Host Lions Club.
Amiel Leano is the president of Leo’s Club, a youth arm of the Lion’s at the Westmoore High School. He said it inspires him to see a fellow Filipino like Satorre lead a group that’s known for charity work. He said, “To see someone there, you can see that you can get there and you can do something, show something of yourself.”
Satorre, who was voted Citizen of the Year in Daly City last year, said being a leader is a calling — a commitment for life.
He said, “In the end, you have to know that you did what you had to do to help others live a better life.”
TFC and Balitang America are honoring successful kababayans in North America through its ongoing series called “The Filipino Champions: Mga Pinoy na Maipagmamalaki.” If you know anyone who deserves to be featured, e-mail us at email@example.com. Write The Filipino Champion in the subject line.