I’m Fred Skeen, and I’m a case manager at Hospitality House. My job is to assist guests with qualifying for social services benefits, medical care referrals, and eventually housing. We want to guide our guests to transition from homelessness to self-sufficiency and housing.

I want to share with you all the story of a client that I will call Sally. Sally has been a guest at our shelter off and on for the past few years. She has experienced several cycles of substance abuse and then sobriety again. She is often quick to rebound and find employment and even seek out her own housing options. However, after completion of a treatment program and living in a recovery residence, she later relapsed again and was unable to stay in that residence. Sally then came back to Hospitality House for support. We were there for her in her moment of need with wraparound case management services. After a short “re-start” stay with us in our Outreach Dorm, she was again able to gain traction and secure re-entry into a residential treatment program and their supportive housing services. Sally subsequently secured a new job and is doing well again.

We will always be there to assist Sally in the future, as long as she needs us. We will not lose hope for her because we have seen many recoveries, and most are usually only achieved with a strong support system, and most of all, perseverance. At Hospitality House, we believe in our guests and we thank our donors for helping our guests on their journeys back to housing.

This month we are celebrating 15 years of services! Hospitality House’s efforts to launch began in winter 2004 and by June 2005, we became an officially recognized 501(c)(3). Today, hundreds of lives have been touched and even more have homes. We are here today because our little community believed we could do better, and together, we are doing more every day to help local individuals and families in Nevada County.

Ticketholders rejoice! After the cancellation of the 14th annual Empty Bowl benefit for Hospitality House, ticketholders finally have an opportunity to safely collect their beautiful artisan bowls and take the spirit of the event home with them. Bowl pick up will take place on Friday, July 10, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 840 E. Main Street in Grass Valley (formally Bread & Roses Thrift and More), next door to Sierra Cinemas. See hhshelter.org for full pick up details and instructions. A big thank you also to our artists in the community for making Empty Bowl possible every year as well as our wonderful business sponsors.

Normally at this time we thank all the cook groups who came and cooked over the last week, but to keep our shelter safe, our cook groups are supporting our meals by donating financial support and food, and Chef Chris is safely cooking all meals instead. We’d like to thank Unitarian Universalist Community of the Mountains, St. Mt. St. Mary’s Academy, Unity in the Gold Country, Meals by Heals, Peace Lutheran Church, The Home Team, and Seventh Day Adventist for all their help. To everyone who donated our most needed items last week, thank you as well!

Now down to the nitty gritty needs of the shelter for this week…

  • Adult coloring books
  • Colored pens and pencils
  • Any crafts that can be done by one person
  • Deodorant
  • Shampoo and conditioner, regular sizes
  • Men’s and Women’s razors
  • Men’s body spray
  • Takeout food containers
  • Disposable gloves, size XL
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Paper masks
  • Bleach
  • Men’s and Women’s underwear

Anyone who has upgraded their personal assist devices, and have old ones just lying in their dresser drawer, please consider donating these gently used items:

  • Diabetes test kits (Glucose meter & test strips)
  • Hearing aids, any condition
  • Eyeglasses, any kind
  • Earplugs

Please drop off urgent items to Utah’s Place, located in Brunswick Basin, past the DMV, at 1262 Sutton Way. For a tax receipt, please ring the doorbell and wait for someone to come outside to assist you. We greatly appreciate the community’s help at such times of certainty. If we all stick together, we’ll get what we need. Thank you!