Resident receives Phoenix Award from BHR

One of our residents who recently moved into her own home received the Phoenix Award from BHR! BHR is Behavioral Health Resources in Olympia, WA. BHR is a multi-county provider for mental illness and addiction recovery services. They offer therapy, outpatient treatment, psychiatry, crisis management, medication management, and many other services.

As BHR states, “The Phoenix Awards are designed to celebrate those who have used their strength to rise from the ashes of mental illness and addiction, and, those who have helped them do so. By honoring and celebrating the achievements of these special people in our community, we hope to reduce the stigma associated with mental illness and/or addiction and to promote the understanding that mental illness and addiction is treatable. Sponsored by the BHR’s Community Mental Health Foundation and hosted by Olympia Federal Savings, this event celebrates lives made healthier through the skills and generosity of our community.”

Congratulations Arin. We are so proud of you!

Here is the nomination our Program Manager Raul Salazar wrote about Arin:

Arin Long was one of the original residents of Quixote Village.  She was a resident when the village was just a tent camp.  She moved into Quixote Village on December 24, 2013 and was a resident until June 30, 2017.

Arin had a long history of drug use, which was a major part of her life when she came to Camp Quixote.  Many traumatic events in her life contributed to this addiction.  As soon as she transitioned from the camp to Quixote Village, staff began working with Arin to provide her with the services needed to overcome her addictions.  Arin struggled with the process of getting clean and sober, as many people often do.  It was not easy and she was on the verge of losing her housing at Quixote Village on a few different occasions.  Staff never gave up on her and Arin never gave up on herself.  Despite going through not only her addiction to drugs, but also the loss of a close friend, Arin made the decision to enter a 60 day in-patient treatment program.  She completed the program with flying colors and returned to Quixote Village, where her housing unit was being held for her.

Upon her return, Arin began to involve herself in activities that would benefit her and others in various ways.  She received her high school diploma through South Puget Sound Community College, she paid off existing court debt to renew her driver’s license, she attended regular recovery meetings, she obtained employment, and she purchased a vehicle.  Arin also became a member of the Quixote Village Resident Committee.  A group of residents that are voted onto the committee by other residents.  The committee assists staff with daily tasks, provide guidance to new residents, and plan various resident social events.  Arin was a major contributor to the committee.

After all her success, it was clear to staff, that Arin was ready for life beyond Quixote Village.  Although staff would have been happy to have Arin stay at the Village for much longer, she made the decision to move out and share a rental home with her significant other.  Arin moved out at the end of June, 2017 and has continued to maintain her successful ways.  She is excelling at her job and is enjoying the life she has created for herself.  She maintains regular contact with Quixote Village residents and staff.  It should be noted, Arin has been clean and sober for over two and a half years now.

Arin is a great example of what can be accomplished when someone obtains stable housing and access to services.  She is also a great example of hard work and determination.  Although the process was difficult, Arin never gave up.  She believed in herself and what she could accomplish.  Quixote Village staff appreciate the opportunity to nominate Arin Long for an annual Phoenix Award.  We believe she is very deserving of this honor.

Raul introducing Arin at the Awards Ceremony

Arin telling her story

Arin receiving her award from Lowell Gordon, past BHR Foundation President

Arin receiving her award

The crew.

Arin and her significant other Adam

 

 

 

 

 

We are so proud of you Arin!

Our crew! From left: Raul, Tim, Adam, Arin, Jimi, Paulie, Anne, and Jaycie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adopt A Tiny House

We are SO excited to announce our new fundraiser, Adopt a Tiny House! See our flyer below. You can contact us at 360-338-0451 for more info. It takes a Village!

 

 

 

Life Skills 201 Graduation!

                                           Marie giving her graduation speech

Hello everyone! I had the pleasure this Tuesday, July 25th, to witness five of our residents graduate from the Life Skills 201 Program at the Peace Center. Our residents went through a seven-week course packed with real life learning. Here are some of the things they learned:
– Budgeting (food budgeting, different ways of making a budget, envelope system)
– Saving
– Do’s and don’ts of credit cards and payday loans
– Life priorities (wants v. needs)
– Nutrition (chalked full of healthy recipes they can make from our produce in our garden)
– Fitness
– Resume building
-Goal setting
– Time management
We are SO extremely thankful for the staff and volunteers at the Peace Center for providing such a friendly and fun atmosphere. The Peace Center is part of Capital Christian Center. They are a resource center with a full food bank, workshops, and a plethora of educational workshops. We are so honored that they came to US and asked our residents what they wanted to learn. I was lucky enough to be able to attend all of the classes and see each Life Coach and resident learn from each other’s lived experiences. It was a beautiful thing! The Peace Center is planning on doing another Life Skills 201 Program in September/October. We hope for more residents and community members to join in!

                                                            Well deserved treat!

                                             Mike giving his graduation speech

                                                         Jimi receiving his award

                                                        Mike getting his certificate

 

Orting Updates

Hello all,

We have partnered with Community Frameworks, the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs, and Puget Sound Veterans Hope Center to create a tiny home village in Orting, Washington. The village will be the same set up as QV. Yesterday I went to go visit the area. WOW, was I impressed! The land was beautiful. It was quiet and serene. The pictures below do NOT do it justice. It had not one but TWO baseball fields and even a trout pond!

I then went to a community open forum in Orting with our partners. We presented our “case” on building affordable housing for Veterans at the Old Soldiers Home. We had great feedback and support from the community. Our very own resident Jimi gave a powerful speech about his journey from Camp Quixote to the Village. Two veterans from the Hope Center told their stories about how the Hope Center and Tacoma Mission has helped them. They will hopefully be two of our first residents in Orting!
There were some reservations from a few community members, mostly about crime and fear of drug use in their neighborhoods. We hear this one a lot. Although it is a concern to a lot of neighbors, it has proven to be nothing but the opposite at the Village and other permanent supportive housing facilities. We spoke to them about their concerns and gave them an open invitation to come to QV to see how things are here.
Overall, I would say the community open forum was successful. It was great to see all of our partners coming together in order to house homeless veterans. We still have a long way to go and may have some bumps in the road but all I can say to that is bring it on!

 

Walking into the field and admiring the landscape. From L to R: Jimi (QV resident), Sean (Executive Director), and Joe (Board Member).

Raul (Program Manager), looking for some trout.

Fishing Pond gazebo. Can you imagine hanging out here – let alone living here?!

Ted (Panza President) speaking with Alfie (Director of Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs).

 

 

Jimi (Resident) speaking with Community Frameworks

Orting Community Forum watching our PBS video.

Raul talking to the audience about Quixote Village

Yes, There is Progress!

If you have driven past the Quixote Village site recently, you might have thought,  “What’s going on? Nothing’s happening!”  Well, appearances aside, a lot has been going on, but behind the scenes.  Get this: the site has been leased to us by Thurston County (for one dollar a year for 40 years, thank you very much!), it actually falls within the jurisdiction of the City of Olympia, and the City of Tumwater, which is right across the street, actually provides some utilities.  Which resulted in some confusion about who gets to charge us for what that has taken some time to work out.  But word came down Tuesday that we are good to go, and additional excavation will begin next Monday (look for the clouds of dust!).  Meanwhile, our contractor has been assembling materials for the cabins and community building and making all the other arrangements that need to be done at this stage.

And, thanks to Camp Quixote resident/graphic specialist Jon Colt, we have a construction banner, acknowledging the major players in making Quixote Village happen, posted at the site:

Next time you drive by, things should be jumpin’!  Give a toot on your horn to show your support!  More, anon.