Thursday, November 18, 2010
COMMUNITY HUMAN SERVICESYear Founded: 1969 | Paid Staff: 80 | Budget: $3,680,943 | 658-3811 | www.chservices.org
The Big Idea: GLBTQ folks, and those living with or affected by HIV/AIDS, need a supportive environment in which they can discuss common challenges. But there aren’t a lot of places like this in Monterey County, especially for low-income residents. Community Human Services’ CATS (Counseling and Therapy Services) program offers mental health services for those with HIV/AIDS and GLBTQ individuals, couples and families. It’s asking for funding to help support these services, which are available to low-income community members and those receiving Medi-Cal. The program offers one-on-one counseling and drop-in groups at CHS locations in Seaside and Salinas. Counselors are trained to deal with mental health issues specific to the HIV/AIDS and GLBTQ communities, including alienation, fear, coping with loss or violence, discrimination, gender confusion and the challenges of raising children.
Safe House: “We help people make profound changes in their lives in a manner that is respectful and confidential, while also being professional and affordable to vulnerable people in need.”
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY MONTEREY COUNTYYear Founded: 1989 | Paid Staff: 1 part-time | Budget: $32,000 | 422-4828 | www.habitatmonterey.org
The Big Idea: Habitat for Humanity has three potential projects building homes for people in need on deck for 2011, but they won’t be able to fund any of them without financial help. First, there’s potential Marina Redevelopment Agency property. If Habitat can obtain it, the group will update, repair and landscape the properties so it can move families in next year. Second, the nonprofit’s bidding on vacant land in Marina and planning to build two homes on it in 2011. Finally, it’s trying to turn the housing market crash into a positive for needy families by looking for reasonably priced foreclosures to purchase and repair.
Home Builders: “Monterey County is one of the least affordable housing markets in the entire U.S. Over 50 percent of residents cannot afford to buy their own homes. Habitat assists a mix of households in the 60-percent to 80-percent range of Monterey County median annual income based on family size.”
HOSTELLING INTERNATIONAL – MONTEREY HOSTELYear Founded: 2000 | Paid Staff: 8 | Budget: $260,000 | 649-0375 | www.montereyhostel.org
The Big Idea: Locals know the Monterey Hostel as Carpenter’s Hall. The nonprofit wants to make it a community showcase for sustainability. To do this, is needs to hire a part-time grant writer to find funding for several maintenance projects: treating termite infestations with orange oil, replacing single-pane windows with double-paned, repairing water damage in walls, fixing plumbing issues, doing preventative maintenance, installing solar panels and performing a comprehensive energy audit. The hostel also hopes to hire a part-time volunteer and program coordinator, which would allow it to reach out to local schools and organizations and coordinate volunteer projects, programs and events.
Tolerance Through Travel: “The Hostel offers a unique opportunity for the community to experience world cultures without leaving home. So many nationalities and backgrounds staying together under one roof provides a wonderful environment for creating programs that demonstrate the value of other cultures, fostering tolerance and understanding.”
NATIONAL COALITION BUILDING INSTITUTE MONTEREY COUNTYYear Founded: 1993 | Paid Staff: 1 | Budget: $28,000 | 373-4606 | www.ncbi.org
The Big Idea: Get ready to celebrate the first annual Generation Diversity Day. This project will recognize and honor high school students for their social justice/diversity awareness work. Students from participating National Coalition Building Institute Monterey County schools will design and implement social justice projects to make their schools and communities safer and more culturally competent. Projects could include coordinating a Diversity Day or a Martin Luther King Day of Service, or a variety of other social-justice activities. Those who volunteer 15 hours or more will be recognized at an NCBI event honoring the youth, staff, volunteers and NCBI alumni who made these projects a reality.
Voice for Change: “NCBI is the only local organization that addresses systemic problems of discrimination and prejudice by training leaders to take action in their schools, workplaces and organizations. In our school programs, students and advisers, trained in the NCBI model, lead diversity workshops for their schools.”
THE SALVATION ARMY MONTEREY PENINSULA CORPSYear Founded: 1895 | Paid Staff: 42 | Budget: $3.3 million | 899-4911 | www.tsamonterey.org
The Big Idea: Start early: that’s good advice for most things in life, and wise words suggested by The Salvation Army’s childhood development center director, who has asked that schools identify youth with behavior issues at an early age. To help with this early intervention, the nonprofit wants to employ a licensed therapist to work with children, their parents and teachers. It’s simple, but effective: intervene early to avoid dealing with more serious issues later, like dropping out, getting involved in gangs and participating in crime.
Saving Souls: “When a person asks for help, we do all we can to attend to their needs. We have established a program for homeless families by providing emergency and transitional housing to help them to become self-sufficient and transition into permanent housing. We educate and mentor youth, and provide a safe environment for them to learn and have fun.”
SHELTER OUTREACH PLUSYear Founded: 1998 | Paid Staff: 18 full-time, 15 part-time | Budget: $1,235,000 | 384-3388 | www.shelteroutreachplus.org
The Big Idea: Safety-net programs – like the emergency shelters and transitional housing provided by Shelter Outreach Plus – that rely on state and federal funding have taken a big hit in recent years. Shelter Outreach Plus needs financial help to keep its services intact since the funding sources, most critically the domestic violence funding, have been severely reduced or eliminated. The nonprofit provides 40 emergency shelter beds. They’re at a 99 percent occupancy rate every night.
Fresh Start: “After years of abuse, ‘S.’ reached out to her children’s school, which contacted Shelter Outreach Plus, where she was moved into their confidential emergency shelter. She was assisted with obtaining a restraining order and began her immigration process. ‘S.’ applied and moved into Homeward Bound transitional housing. There, the single mother of four children ages 4-11 continues to receive counseling, has now obtained her visa and is looking for work.”
THE VILLAGE PROJECT, INC.Year Founded: 2008 | Paid Staff: 2 | Budget: $216,000 | 392-1500 | www.thevillageprojectinc.org
The Big Idea: The Village Project is an African-American family resource center that offers a host of educational and supportive services for residents. It is seeking funds for a new music enrichment program, because many of the kids receiving services don’t have access to music lessons. Learning to play an instrument and read music increases math ability; it also improves confidence and may uncover an otherwise hidden talent. In addition to offering the classes, The Village Project will perform pre – and post-tests to chart the youths’ progress and advancement both musically and academically.
Weekday Warriors: “Our unique approach to working with our clients – whom we call ‘warriors’ – is one that celebrates the various cultures from which our warriors come. It utilizes the strengths, worldviews and modes of life functioning embodied in those cultures to effectively carry out our work with them. Our greatness lies in our ability to implement this innovative approach to service provision.”