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April (left) surprised her sister Jenifer (with Saint John's CEO MIchele Steeb, center) by travelling from the Philippines to witness Jenifer sing for our 600+ Party for Change guests!

A Sister’s Story

If you’ve ever been in a support-person role (and most of us have), you know how difficult it is to navigate the obstacles, emotions, logistics and, in most cases, unfavorable circumstances associated with the person you are trying to help. Add to that the frustration and heartbreak of doing everything you know to be physically, financially and emotionally possible, and still your loved one flounders. The family and friends of…

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Turning the Tables

Ten times per year, we hold our popular Guest Chef Dinners at Plates Café, where 200-250 members of our community gather in support of our program to enjoy a delicious meal-with-a-meaning, prepared and presented by a local “guest chef” with the help of our Employment Training Program participants. Each fall for the past three years, we’ve turned the tables with a “Reverse Guest Chef Dinner,” where together with the support…

Councilwoman Ashby

CONGRATULATIONS TO COUNCILWOMAN ANGELIQUE ASHBY AND SIERRA HEALTH FOUNDATION PRESIDENT & CEO CHET HEWIITT, OUR 2018 CHAMPIONS OF CHANGE!

It is our great pleasure to announce the recipients of our 2018 Champions of Change awards, Sacramento City Councilwoman Angelique Ashby and Sierra Health Foundation President and CEO Chet Hewitt! The award, now in its second year, recognizes those who exemplify Saint John’s core values: Love, Courage, Effort, Gratitude, Respect, Community and Growth. Please consider joining us, if you haven’t already reserved your ticket, at our November 3 Party for…

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A Giant Hip Hip Hooray for Allstate Agent and Saint John’s Volunteer Zachary Wandell

Recipient of the 2018 Ray Lynch Community Service Award! Sacramento Allstate agency owner and community volunteer extraordinaire Zachary Wandell has been awarded the prestigious 2018 Ray Lynch Community Service Award, and we couldn’t be prouder! The award is Allstate’s top national honor commending an agency owner or financial specialist for giving back and supporting people and organizations in their local communities. The award, established in 2000 in memory of Allstate…

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From the Mouths, and Eyes, and Ears, of Babes

More than three million children witness domestic violence in their families each year. Three million. Think about that for just a moment, and your heart hurts. The things they’ve seen, the things they’ve heard, the travesties they’ve endured, for most of us this is simply unimaginable. 47 percent of the children that arrive at Saint John’s suffer from anxiety or depression as a result of their homelessness, and more than…

Dr. Olliver Jean Rogers

Real Change Becomes a Reality

We are so very proud to announce that one of our favorite supporters, volunteers, and yes, a former Saint John’s client, Pastor Olliver Jean Rogers, earned her Doctor of Philosophy in Christian Counseling from the Pacific Northwest Seminary on September 20th! Way to go Dr. Rogers! Olliver earned her pastoral ministry from the Church of Transformation in Leesville, Louisiana in 2008 after 11 years of sobriety from a debilitating cocaine…

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Time to Get Out Your Purple Purse!

For the third year running, Saint John’s will be participating in the Purple Purse Challenge, a 31-day national campaign that unites nonprofits in a competition to raise funds for life-changing services to help domestic violence survivors. Sponsored by the Allstate Foundation, one of our strongest supporters, this fundraising effort is held each year throughout the month of October, recognized nationally as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Some eye-opening, heart-wrenching statistics that…

Graduate & Class Representative Julianna M.

Julianna’s Story

Julianna came to Saint John’s straight from treatment on September 18th, 2017, as there was no other place to go. Coming from a life of domestic violence and addiction, her partner was incarcerated for attacking her in her seventh month of pregnancy. And because of her addiction, CPS took custody of her children, and gave her little to no hope that she would ever get them back. Reunification, they told…

Alumnae Lucy G. Photo courtesy of Brenda Bisharat photrography.

Lucy’s Story

Suffering from depression and PTSD, Lucy was lost – to herself and to her children – and ended up self-medicating, and self-destructing, with drugs and alcohol. After finding the strength to enter rehab, and celebrating six-months sobriety, she knew she needed more. Finding Saint John’s was her salvation. “Saint John’s changed everything for me,” observes Lucy. “Life is still scary at times, but now I can deal with it. Saint…

Alumna Lupe S. ~ Photo courtesy of Brenda Bisharat Photography

Lupe’s Story

Living couch to couch and abusing drugs, Lupe knew she had to make a change, but she faced unforgiving stigmas in her traditional Mexican family. She was at the point where she was going to lose her kids. I was sick and tired of being sick and tired! Lupe faced her fears and stood up against the threat of her family disowning her. I just said, “This is where I…

On November 4th, 2017, Mandy and her children shared their story at our annual fundraiser Party for Change.

Mandy’s Story

I met with Mandy at Saint John’s and was immediately overwhelmed by the feeling that everything would be OK. Mandy’s quiet strength and honest gaze just made me feel safe. What’s remarkable is how far she’s come in just a short amount of time. It was a little over two years ago on Christmas day that this beautiful mother of six children was balled up in the corner of a…

Photo courtesy of Brenda Bisharat.

Jamie’s Story

Jamie was worried that her abusive roommate and want-to-be suitor would soon turn on her young daughter. She was repeatedly turned down at shelters because her abuser was not her partner, until she found Saint John’s. “Saint John’s changed my life,” says Jamie. “When I walked in, I thought it was beautiful. I knew it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.” While in the program, Jamie lost her daughter’s father in a…

Jennifer R.  - Saint John's Alumna. Photo courtesy of Brenda Bisharat.

Jennifer’s Success Story

Following the death of her beloved mother and having her son survive a stabbing that left him permanently blind in one eye, Jennifer found herself homeless at 40 years old, and suffering from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). She became agoraphobic — afraid of stepping outside– and afraid of even letting her daughter walk to school by herself. Jennifer and her young daughter resorted to wandering the streets of Sacramento, sleeping…

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Saint John’s – A Symphony of Moving Parts

When Catia Saraiva-Munoz discovered Saint John’s Program for Real Change in her quest to partner with a community-based non-profit, she was more than impressed by what she found. “This is not a typical charity that provides food and shelter to the homeless,” explains Saraiva-Munoz. “This program delivers tangible results. It addresses all of the many facets that lead to homelessness including unemployment, mental health, parenting skills, addiction, domestic violence and…

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Erika’s Success Story

There is a Walmart parking lot in North Sacramento where Erika and her 12 year-old daughter Gabby spent some nights. They had free Wi-Fi and Erika would let Gabby play on her phone to pass the time. Homeless off and on for almost five years, every day was an exercise in survival. Erika and Gabby would slip into the bathroom at Walmart to wash up, hoping none of the store…

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Maria’s Story

She remembered it like it was yesterday – the events of that night forever seared into her memory. Maria, a former addict, thought she was finally getting her life together. After living crammed in a van with family members for four months, including her sister and the father of her child, she had finally scraped up enough money to get an apartment. Unfortunately, the sense of relief she felt was…

Adrianna Kathleen Granlund

Adrianna’s Story

If nothing ever changed, there would be no butterflies – Anonymous I had the pleasure to sit and chat with Adrianna, a graduate of Saint John’s Program for Real Change, and soon came to realize that she is an incredible example of how to overcome adversity through perseverance and faith. My first thought, upon hearing her story, was that it would have been easy for Adrianna to give up. A…

Wendy

Wendy’s Story

“It started with the electricity being turned off,” says Wendy, a mom of two and a resident of the Saint John’s Program for Real Change. Within one month of the lights going off, Child Protective Services (CPS) showed up at the kids’ school even though they were both showered and fed. What could have precipitated such a swift response from CPS? When I sat down with Wendy to discuss how…

Kaira (left), after receiving her high school diploma -
 another step towards real change!

Kaira’s Story

As we begin a new year I would like to invite you to meet someone who has given me a completely different perspective on my life. And this is by no means a temporary effect, it is daily. I think about her daily.  When I visited the program at Saint John’s in December I had never been to the facilities. I had been to the fundraisers and was incredibly touched…

Natisha

Natisha’s Story

“I had a happy childhood,” Natisha began. It was an upbringing she shared with two half siblings, her mom and her grandmother – both functioning substance abusers, a habit Natisha would seemingly inherit years later as she veered away from her happy beginnings down what was soon to become a dark path. At 18, following her high school graduation, Natisha got a job, married and flirted briefly with crack cocaine….

Simona

Simona’s Story

Jan. 2016 – Simona had hit rock bottom—emotionally and financially. The crash was painful. Over the course of 16 days, she had left an abusive boyfriend and watched her father take his last breath. Then she did what she had always thought was elusive, she stopped drinking. Simona finally faced herself brutally and honestly. She wanted change and is now five months (as of Dec. 2017) into Saint John’s Program…

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The Red Door Stories-Sabrina

At just nineteen young years of age, Sabrina found herself sleeping under a bridge, alone in the cold, and pregnant. Born into a world filled with alcoholism, drug abuse, and violence, she had never known a life without utter chaos. And now, she too was bringing another new life into that same dark place. As a child, she vividly remembers her father chasing her mother through the house, screaming at…

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Sheila’s Story

Sheila, a 54-year-old native of Hawaii, has long been haunted by her younger brother’s untimely death at 18—something for which she blames herself. She has cowered under a shadow of whiskey and methamphetamine—a darkness that took control of her life for nearly 40 years before she found Saint John’s Program for Real Change. Sheila’s self-destructive behavior began in her teens. As a young addict, she dropped out of high school…

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Perseverance with Lilly C.

After 30 years shooting heroin with her husband, Lilly found a higher power in Jesus and was sober for 17 years before relapsing with alcohol. Because she was in and out of jail for 10 years for stealing to support her addiction, much of the time Lilly’s four kids were left in the care of their grandmother. Lilly had no idea how damaged she was inside; she never believed she…

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Experiencing Gratitude with Jessica L.

Born to a family of addicts, Jessica began to drink heavily after her brother passed away from an overdose. Shortly thereafter, two cousins were shot and killed in separate incidents, all leading to an addiction to meth, add the loss of her job and her home, and an abusive relationship. She began to sell meth to support her habit, ultimately landing in jail for possession. “Saint John’s gave me the…

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Pursuing clarity with Jackie T.

  “I learned how to address my issues; Saint John’s helped me to find myself and I gained confidence.  I was so inspired by the stories of the other women.” Addicted to meth and alcohol, Jackie started using at the age of 13.  Moving through her addiction from Las Vegas to Riverside to Sacramento, she ultimately lost custody of her children, suffered from domestic violence and depression and ended up homeless. …

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demonstrating tenacity with Grace J.

     “Saint John’s taught me how to peel back the layers so I can heal – that’s just what I needed.” A meth addict for 10 years, Grace found herself homeless and lost her children to CPS. After her first stint at Saint John’s several years ago, Grace was clean and sober, earned her GED, was on her college’s honor roll and on her way to a better life…

Cynthia

CELEBRATING CYNTHIA B.

“Saint John’s taught me that I’m responsible for my own life. I never grasped that before. I learned to take charge.” Cynthia’s spiral into 28 years of addiction began at the age of 12. She bounced from one abusive relationship to another until her former boyfriend posed a serious threat to her relationship with her son. That day, she said “enough is enough.” Saint John’s was the perfect place to…

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CELEBRATING EMILY L.

“Saint John’s taught me to never give up on life. The hope everyone gives you as they share their story, give their advice – it brightens that spark you lost.” For years, Emily lived on other people’s couches, battling a vicious drug addiction. Her wake-up call came when Child Protective Services took her children away. That’s when she turned to Saint John’s. She maintained her sobriety and became the first…

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Celebrating Cornisha H.

        “You have to want something different to happen in your life.  Until I came to Saint John’s, I didn’t know I had options.  I’m not walking on eggshells anymore.” Cornisha was afraid to leave – afraid she wouldn’t be able to take care of her two children on her own, and afraid she’d have no other option than to go back to the abusive relationship she…

Contact us

916-453-1482
email us at:
info@saintjohnsprogram.org
2443 Fair Oaks Blvd, #369
Sacramento, CA 95825-7684
Mailing address only.
Not a physical location.
Nonprofit, 501(c)(3)
(Tax ID: 68-0132934).

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