Janice was a homeless, single woman who had nowhere else to go when she came to InnVision’s Georgia Travis Center (GTC). The InnVision case manager she met with upon her arrival went about meeting her immediate needs. Janice was given a place to stay at InnVision’s Commercial Street Inn (CSI), short-term stabilization housing for women and children, across the street from GTC. She had many health issues that needed to be addressed; she was missing a number of teeth and has very poor vision. She now has prescription glasses and is in the process of getting dentures.
Through the GTC classes and workshops, she has gained new Internet and computer skills. Our case manager recommended Janice for the City of San Jose’s Project HOPE Work2Future program , a 4-6 month office skills training program. Upon completion, she will be assisted with job placement. InnVision has extended her stay at the CSI until she finishes the program and obtains employment. Soon she will be able to support herself in stable housing and stay off the streets. With the tools and skills she has gained through GTC programs and her vocational training, she will be able to better handle any future emergencies. She has worked hard at getting ahead and has a bright future.
Irma has been a student in our English as a Second Language program at Georgia Travis Center (GTC) Family Place for two years. She and her husband are low-income parents of two children. They live in a small duplex unit shared with other family members. Although Irma's husband had a steady job he was recently laid off due to staff changes. He has found a new job but is barely able to support his family. A few months ago Irma expressed interest in looking for a job to help out her husband, but she was concerned her English skills were not strong enough to pursue a job of her own. After a few months encouragement from her classmates and family, Irma decided to apply for a job at San Jose School District in the food services department. She came in one morning with her application in hand and wanted to ensure she had filled it out correctly. Within a few days she received a call from the district asking her to come in for an interview. Irma now works for Bachrodt Elementary School where her two children attend school. Irma continues to attend English as a Second Language classes and participates in other Family Place classes that include Nutrition, Parenting, and Computer skills.
While Irma was attending classes, her youngest daughter Rosina was enrolled in the Child Development Center. When Rosina first came to the program she was very shy and did not want to socialize with other children. This concerned Irma, but after a few months and positive-based skills learned attending Parenting classes Irma was able to help her daughter overcome her shyness and fear. This helped Rosina prepare her for her first year as a bilingual kindergartner.
Although Irma grew up in an environment where education was not an option, especially for females, she has gained tremendous self confidence through InnVision programs. This is most apparent during home visits where she employs the skills and knowledge learned through InnVision programs. Irma is learning how to use positive discipline methods and communication skills with her family.
Julius L is a 53 year old male who found himself unable to work after a 30 year history of employment in the Bay Area due to his increasingly severe medical and mental health issues. While Julius had a successful career in the landscaping and irrigation industry, his severe health problems left him unable to attend to the physical and mental demands of his job. After losing his job in 2004, Julius found himself homeless and unable to obtain any benefits due to the bureaucratic hurdles. When the Opportunity Center opened in 2006, Julius was lucky to be one of 25 clients approved for subsidy and moved to the OSC. With help from InnVision case management, OHP and Stanford Disability law Clinic, Julius filed for SSDI benefits and obtained a General Assistance Loan while he waited. After a long and grueling process which included his case manager testifying in front of a judge on his behalf, Julius was granted his SSDI benefits this past July. Today, he is truly self-sufficient and continues to live and prosper in the Opportunity Center community – without the rental subsidy program. At a recent Stanford Disability Law Clinic event, Julius shared his experience with law students interested in the project. He told them, “If it wasn't for these guys here [InnVision and Stanford Disability Law Clinic] I’d still be on the streets.”