04/09/2022 – Welcoming Event – Marin County
Upcoming Welcoming Event – Marin County
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On Saturday, April 9th, Welcoming Home will again be at work, this time fully furnishing the apartments of four formerly homeless neighbors in Marin. Read about the individuals we’ll be helping below.
Donation Drop Offs will be on Saturday, April 9th, between 9:30 and 11:00 at St. Luke Presbyterian Church, 10 Bayview Dr., San Rafael, off of Pt San Pedro Road. Covid protocols will be in place
Roberta lives in Home 1. She was was referred to us by Marin Housing Authority’s Odyssey Program. Roberta became hearing impaired as a young child, and lost significant vision in high school. Despite these challenges, she was able to become an educator for visually and hearing impaired children, as well as a Special Ed teacher. She married and had two children, and went through a divorce about eight years ago. The following year, she suffered a traumatic head injury, which led to neurological issues. She lost custody of her kids and became homeless: moving between family, friends and associates, as well as in and out of hospitals. A couple years ago her vision worsened. She now has a social worker who is very supportive and feels thankful to have a place of her own.
Donna lives in Home 2 and was also referred to us by Marin Housing Authority’s Odyssey Program. Donna is a 55-year-old Marin County native, a mom and grandmother, who spent nearly three years without a home to call her own. Last year, she finally moved into her own apartment, but spent much of the year in and out of the hospital with health issues. She never really moved in and made it home. The apartment is sparsely furnished with donated items at the end of their useful life. The living space, which is shared with her caregiver and grandkids when they visit, is literally empty; there is no dining table or chairs or lighting. Donna fondly remembers the days when she had her own belongings, a tidy home, and her health. She loves bold colors, reds and blues and likes to cook. She is so excited about having the simple basics in the kitchen, comfortable beds, and a place to share family meals and finally feel at home.
Sheila lives in Home 3 and was also referred to us by Marin Housing Authority’s Odyssey Program. Sheila attended Redwood High School. She has only seen her father twice since her parents divorced. She suffered through an acrimonious divorce, losing her house and custody of the children. She became homeless at age 32. After 22 years on the streets and a few months in a shelter recently, she finally got her own apartment. After she survived an attempt to hurt herself, Sheila realized she had something to live for and turned back to her childhood faith. She has realized she wants to help others who have had the kind of traumatic childhood and abusive marriage she did. She plans to volunteer with Homeward Bound, and says “I am eternally grateful and calm for the first time in my life right now and reflecting that I am off the streets at last.” She added, “I want to thank everyone who is helping me get a second chance at life. Much love to you and bless you.”
Colleen lives in Home 4. A highly talented and interesting person, Colleen began her career at a soda fountain and later at a bakery. She then trained as a cosmetologist, running a successful beauty salon for 16 years with her husband, traveling abroad to attend classes in the Sassoon method, while raising two children. She then switched to working in an antique store, where for 10 years she identified, researched, and sourced pieces for the store. Then, unfortunately, life took a bad turn and Colleen became homeless, living in her car with her bird for four years until she was able to buy a trailer. But as Corinne’s many years of standing for long periods and lifting heavy furniture began to take a toll, she soon had to use a walker. She is so delighted to be able to move out of the trailer and into her own forever home.
We were able to give each of the four individuals a “starter kit”, including a new bed, new sheets and towels, temporary folding table and chairs, a couple of floor lamps (there is no overhead lighting in the apartments) and some basic kitchen items, all donated by previous donors, to keep the residents going until we are able to fully furnish and equip their homes on April 9th.
Please see the list below and donate what you can to help these formerly homeless neighbors get a fresh start and to replenish the starter kits for the next set of families/individuals referred to us. Cash donations are always welcomed to cover the cost of new beds, a second moving truck and movers and any needed items that aren’t donated.
With much gratitude,
The Welcoming Home Team