“Transforming Lives and Building Communities”
50 years and counting
This organization has done some amazing work over the years, but it was truly time for a radical change to prepare GRIP for NEW challenges that face Homelessness and Hungry in West County and beyond. I have been blessed with great staff some, who have been here almost since the early beginnings. I have also brought on board a few new additions that will prove to be valuable members of the new team. My Board has been amazing. Change is not easy but when you have even just a few hard working and passionate people who are committed ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE. Don’t forget this is an organization that was founded by some of the most powerful faith leaders who have set the path for this. So, what have we accomplished already? Let’s start with a Forensic Audit and upgrade to the Finance Department–this is a critical element to any transformation. There has been a totally revised Case Management System put in place to support our residents in our Shelter Program, as well as, a new cook to improve the variety and nutritional options of the food we serve. We designed a Donation System that will track all in-kind donations, so we might provide a year-end report and document for taxes. We revised the entire Personnel System and I met 1-on-1 with all 22 staff and consultants to solidify the vision. We also did a major cleaning of all offices and the dining hall from top to bottom and the shelter benefited from needed building repairs and upgrades. We have a volunteer IT Director who is upgrading our Website and technology in every department, and did we pull off one of the most successful Harmony Walk events right in the middle of all the changes? Yes, we did!!come to the Greater Richmond Interfaith Program (GRIP). I am thankful to the Board of Directors who made the courageous decision to make me part of the team to literally “Transform Lives and Build”. I hit the ground running on August 21, 2017 and had the privilege of working with former Executive Director Art Hatchett and Interim Director, Louise Bourassa.
Without a doubt one of our biggest accomplishments in 2017 has been the completion of repairs and rental of our NEW Veterans Apartments. This was a donation from the West County Housing Corporation, a small group of hometown heroes. This project, with the support of our On-Site Property Manager, will house a total of 8 Veteran families and we will offer case management and other services to support them.
With all that has been done in 2017 already we could not have gotten a better Christmas gift than the award from Contra Costa County to expand our services and open the CARE CENTER for homeless residents in West County.
The priority vision for us will be to provide better quality services to homeless families, expand and diversify our funding by offering a new donor campaign that will allow individuals to make the least of these a payroll deduction. We will keep our hands on the pulse of new solutions to one of the fastest growing problems in communities across the country. We win because we have FAITH and believe in a better America.