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First Tiny Home Village for Homeless Youth in California Coming to Victorville

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$1 Million to Help End Youth Homelessness in Old Town 

The Family Assistance Program received $1 million donated from The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians to help with a solution to end youth homelessness. This money will be used in the expansion of the Family Assistance Program’s current youth drop-in and community center in Old Town Victorville, located on the corner of 6th and C Street. This expansion will add 20 beds to create an emergency shelter, a commercial kitchen, and a tiny home village with 14 tiny homes. This will be the first tiny home village created exclusively for transitional age youth that is experiencing homelessness in the state of California.  

Many complain about the homeless population in our community, but The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians is investing in the solution to the problem. “I am excited that the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has recognized the need for youth specific services and is  supporting this innovative project. If we do not end youth homelessness, we will not stop the  pipeline of people who have had their childhoods destroyed by housing insecurity. This project will set these young people up for a lifetime of successes.” says Darryl Evey, the executive director of the Family Assistance Program. This project will connect homeless youth with emergency services and our other transitional programs that include wraparound care in a part of our community that truly needs it. Family Assistance Program is currently providing homeless youth services through their youth drop-in centers, youth shelters, and transitional homes. This project will provide housing to any youth experiencing homelessness aged 18 – 24.  

“We are deeply honored to support the Family Assistance Program and their first ever Tiny Home Village to help combat homelessness for the young adults impacted in Victorville,” said Chairman Ken Ramirez. “Our youth are the future and no young adult should ever have to experience not having a roof over their head. Investing in infrastructure that will provide future generations with the necessary  resources to thrive is a top priority for San Manuel.”  

“I am incredibly excited to see the increased services and tiny home village that will assist our most vulnerable youth population at the Family Assistance Program in Victorville. Youth homelessness is a critical issue that non-profit organizations like the Family Assistance Programs are tackling head-on. The generosity of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians and their commitment to bettering our community is unmatched.” –Assemblymember Thurston  “Smitty” Smith 

For more information about how you can become involved in being a solution to homelessness, please visit our website or email Angela Sorrell – angela@familyassist.org.

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Members of Riverside Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson’s Bipartisan Forum urge support of SB 1338

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Bipartisan Group of Riversiders Give CARE Court Stamp of Approval

How much longer can we humanely avert our eyes, ignoring the mentally incapacitated people languishing on our streets?  In a recent poll conducted by Suffolk University, 90% of respondents believed that the U.S. is facing a “full-blown mental health crisis”, and in a California Health Policy Survey, Californians’ identified their top priority policy as ‘ensuring people with severe mental health disorders can get treatment” (2020).   

Californians have an opportunity to address this seemingly bottomless crisis. The Community Assistance, Recovery, and Empowerment Act (CARE), also known as Senate Bill 1338, empowers family members, first responders, and behavioral health providers with an avenue to petition a civil court on behalf of a loved one or community member that is incapable of caring for themselves. This potentially allows families and local communities the ability to initiate a CARE plan to provide behavioral health care, including medication, housing, and other services, to adults with psychotic disorders and people who lack medical decision-making capacity. A critically important part of the plan is the appointment of both a public defender and a personal advocate to help guide participants and ensure individual rights are protected.  

Californians across the political spectrum agree that it is time to make a bold commitment to transforming our broken mental health system to help our state’s most vulnerable residents and we have an opportunity to do so now. Arguably, California has not seen meaningful mental health reforms since 1972, partially because we continue to allow a quest for perfection to negate a commitment to incremental progress.

As diverse members of Riverside Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson’s Bipartisan Forum, we urge you to join us in supporting this legislation.  Please contact your state representative this week (https://findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov) to urge a yes vote on SB 1338.

In October 2021, Riverside’s Mayor, Patricia Lock Dawson, convened a group of 14 community members with differing political ideologies to help drive solutions for the crises amongst those in homeless situations with serious mental health conditions. The group felt passionate that state-level mental health reforms were needed, including tools that would allow families to compel their family members with psychotic and addiction disorders into treatment.  The CARE Court legislation (SB 1338) is a step forward in this direction. 

Members of Riverside Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson’s Bipartisan Forum are: Dr. Cheryl-Marie Osborne Hansberger, Chani Beeman, Steve Johnson, Ana Miramontes, Rico Alderette, Tisa Rodriguez, Chuck Avila, Sheila Kay Riley, Ruben Ayala, Janice Rooths, Keith Sklarsky, Ana Lee, Dr. Regina Patton-Stell

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Inland Empire Community Foundation Announces $589,500 to 40 Nonprofits from Community Impact Fund

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Grants will be used to strengthen work that prioritizes diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI)

Inland Empire Community Foundation (IECF) announced that 40 nonprofits received $589,500 in grants through its Community Impact Fund, designed to support and expand the capacity and effectiveness of organizations working to advance racial, gender, and economic equity for residents in the Inland Empire.

In keeping with the Foundation’s focus on grantmaking through an equity lens, grants from the Community Impact Fund will be used to strengthen work that prioritizes diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Unrestricted grants between $5,000 and $20,000 were given for general operating costs and to support efforts that enable an organization to carry out its mission effectively. To be eligible for a grant, each organization had to demonstrate a commitment to practicing and institutionalizing diversity, equity and inclusion in governance, staffing, organization practices, and collaborative relationships.

The 2021/2022 Community Impact Fund grantees are:

  • A Coming Of Age Foster Family Agency
  • Academy for Grassroots Organizations
  • Assistance League of San Bernardino
  • Bear Valley Community Healthcare District Foundation
  • Bezerk Productions
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Inland Empire
  • Boys & Girls Club Of The Hi-Desert
  • Boys & Girls Club of the San Gorgonio Pass
  • Breast Cancer Solutions
  • Brightest Star Inc.
  • Camp of Champions A & M, Inc.
  • Caravanserai Project
  • Cathedral City Senior Center
  • Child Advocates Of San Bernardino County
  • Consortium for Early Learning Services
  • Cove Communities Senior Association
  • Desert Rose Trauma Recovery
  • Empower You Edutainment
  • Faith in Action of San Gorgonio Pass
  • Feed My Flock Ministries
  • First Christian Church of Ontario, CA
  • First Tee-Coachella Valley
  • Fox Riverside Theater Foundation
  • Friends of the Desert Mountains
  • Garner Holt Foundation
  • Giving 365 Inc.
  • Gracious Heart Resource Family Agency
  • Inland Empire Community Collaborative, Inc.
  • Inland Equity Community Land Trust
  • Janet Goeske Foundation
  • Making Hope Happen Foundation
  • Mountain Counseling & Training, Inc.
  • Operation New Hope
  • Ophelia’s Jump Productions
  • People’s Collective for Environmental Justice
  • Positive Young People Inc.
  • The Arts Area
  • The Empowerment Center
  • The Hole in the Wall Inc.
  • Voices for Children

“So many of our students are first generation college graduates and the majority are BIPOC [Black, Indigenous, and people of color], but I saw a disparity in where the money was going,” said John Machado, art history professor at Chaffey College and founder of The Arts Area, a CIF grantee. “What I was seeing was that a lot of these students were giving up on their dream.”

The CIF grant will support arts programs that encourage diverse, equitable and inclusive arts opportunities. This includes Curious Publishing’s BIPOC fund which will cover the costs of printing books for five artists.

Celia Cudiamat, Senior Vice President of Grants and Community Impact, said, “Practicing equity and inclusion requires commitment, diligence, intentionality, and patience over a sustained period of time. This is a joint, on-going journey for IECF as well and we look forward to learning from our grantees over the coming year.”

IECF accepts competitive grant proposals from nonprofit organizations who work to make a difference in the lives of Riverside and San Bernardino County residents throughout the year. Nonprofits interested in applying in 2023 can check the IECF website for guidelines and giving periods.

The 2023 grant schedule and instructions on how to apply will be available in February 2023.

The CIF is funded by generous donations to IECF in support of unrestricted giving. The CIF allows IECF to respond to emerging needs and build the capacity of nonprofits in the IE. Individuals who wish to invest in the Community Impact Fund, or to a community cause or issue that is particularly meaningful to them, can contact IECF to see how their donation might make the biggest impact. For assistance, contact Brie Griset Smith, Senior Vice President of Charitable Giving at 951-241-7777, ext. 111.

Access Photos Here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/4HYNiRSinXkgLzpn9

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James Tate, Corona, reaches 100 gallons in blood donations

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James Alan Tate, 58, of Corona, first donated blood over 30 years ago with LifeStream.

On Friday, Dec. 17, Tate reached his lifetime blood donation milestone, becoming a 100-gallon donor at LifeStream Blood Bank’s Riverside Donor Center, 4006 Van Buren Boulevard.

Tate shared that when he first started donating blood, he would do so intermittently until he realized how important blood donations were for the community.

“From that point forward, I decided to donate as much whole blood, plasma and platelets as I could each year,” he said. “Donating has turned into my life’s passion. Over the years, LifeStream has become my second family.”

Tate and his wife Nancy have lived in Corona for 33 years, where he worked in the aerospace industry. They have one son, Austin. Tate said that through the years he has made many incredible friends through blood donation.

“As long as there are people in need, God willing, I will donate as many life-saving donations as I can.”

LifeStream is a local, nonprofit blood bank that provides blood products and services to more than 80 Southern California hospitals.

For more information, call 800-879-4484 or visit LStream.org.

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