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December 2, 2011

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December 2, 2011

I have been privileged to serve on the Board of Directors for FESCO for the past eleven years. During this time, I have personally witnessed the agency's growth, unfailing support, and deep commitment to serving very low income and homeless families with children in our community. One of the biggest differences between FESCO and other shelters is that FESCO not only offers homeless families food, clothing, and temporary housing, it also offers mental health counseling, parenting classes, and links to community resources that lead families to a self-sustaining life. One of the greatest inspirations of my involvement with FESCO is knowing that homeless families with children are able to stay together during a time of difficult transition and move beyond the inequities of our social system. I am deeply grateful for FESCO's dedicated staff and outstanding leadership of our Executive Director, Cate Steane, who strive to fulfill FESCO's mission and vision to end family homelessness in our community.

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Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

November 30, 2011

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November 30, 2011

its my 1st time being in a shelter, but the environment at where i and my kids choose to stay at was not really like a shelter for me is like a home. the staff are great and my overall being in a shelter for the first time was excellent.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

yes

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

nothing

November 29, 2011

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1 previous review
December 26, 2009

I have been privileged to serve on FESCO's all-volunteer board of directors for the past 14 years. I have served as Board President and on several committees. In 1996 I created FESCO's original webs... more

November 29, 2011

As a grassroots organization with substantial volunteer support, FESCO has been able to do amazing things in our community with very modest finances! Hundreds of formerly homeless families are now productive members of the community thanks to FESCO. As an example, last year 83% of our families who stayed more than two weeks moved to more permanent housing.

The aim of the Family Emergency Shelter Coalition (FESCO) is to enable homeless families with children to move toward self-sufficiency. FESCO provides both short-term emergency housing and longer stays in transitional co-housing, as well as food, support services, and education. It does all of these things and more with a caring and skilled staff and volunteers.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

over 16 years of involvement as a volunteer, as well as visits to the emergency shelter and co-housing units to talk with residents.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

The need is so great that the best change would be for FESCO to grow much larger to be able to house and serve many more families.

More feedback...

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

How did you learn about this organization?

I was marginally involved in the early efforts to form the FESCO coalition in the mid-80s. About a decade later, I became a volunteer boardmember and have stayed involved ever since.

What is this organization's top short-term priority?

Raise more funds.

What is its top priority in the long run?

Obtain more secure sources of long-term funding such as endowments.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

December 26, 2009

I have been privileged to serve on FESCO's all-volunteer board of directors for the past 14 years. I have served as Board President and on several committees. In 1996 I created FESCO's original website and have been maintaining it over the years; look for FESCO at www.fescofamilyshelter.org.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

FESCO - the Family Shelter is unique among programs for the homeless in the Bay Area in that it provides emergency and transitional housing and support services for families with minor children -- including families with single-parent mothers or fathers.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Dedicated, hard-working, and capable.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Provide housing, food and support to many more of the homeless families in our area. FESCO's has always enabled families to work toward self-sufficiency and continues to support them when they do achieve that goal.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

November 28, 2011

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November 28, 2011

I came to FESCO at the Banyan House two years ago. My two children and I had been sleeping in our car and then in a very uncomfortable shelter that made us leave at 9am every morning. This made it hard for me to find employment with having to get my children ready and off to school and no time for myself. I was accepted into Banyan House and had my own room. I was able to make use of the resource room to seek employment and get myself ready for interviews. I was able to give my children the warmth and comfort of a home away from home. They were happy at Banyan all of the staff were so nice and helpful. Antoinette helped us to get into housing and in just 8 months we had a permanent place to live and I found a really good job as an administrator for a small but successful company. My family will forever be grateful to all of the people that make Banyan the warm and loving home that it is. It is with the structure and consistency of the House that we got on track in our lives. Thank You FESCO.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My own life

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Nothing

November 28, 2011

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November 28, 2011

I have to say that this was one of the most organized places I have ever helped. First, let me say that the work of the shelter manager Larissa is outstanding. She made my experience so pleasurable, that I have asked other friends and family to help out this organization. I know she may not have realized what a impact that she had on me that day, but I will continue to support any organization that has staff members like her. Thank you FESCO for all of the help you provide to those in need!

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

November 23, 2011

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November 23, 2011

Hi I would just like to say thank you FESCO because you helped us so much. When my dad died I didn't know what we were going to do and hearing so many things about shelters I didn't want to put my kids in that kind of position, but we lost the house and didn't have anywhere to go so I called FESCO and told them we were in a motel and didn't know what was going to happen The Hayward Family Shelter part of FESCO took us in and after that everything got better. We followed the rules and the staff was great they helped us get back on our feet. We saved our money and moved out and my son got a job through the youth program which FESCO helped get my son into. FESCO has always been supportive and continue to help us when needed. Each and everyone of the staff members helped us and my hats go off to everyone of them because they do care about people and want to help but you have to do your part too and I get that now and how important team work really is. I see someone on the street that doesn't have anything and I stop and give them what I can because FESCO helped me and I never thought I would be able to help some one else. I appreciate it. I love each and everyone of them I carry them in my heart and take them with me whereve I go. My kids and I enjoyed being a part of FESCO.
So thank you very my FESCO Family, Sarah, Mr. Clarence, Evelyn, Naomi. Thanks to all you guys we have been able to reach self sufficiency, And Larissa is a big part of it, she goes way beyond to help us out!





The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

all areas of my life

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

none

November 8, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

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November 8, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

My name is Hector Maciel and i stay at FESCO shelter. When we first arrived to the shelter everything was clean and organized we were really impressed with how nice the place looked and how comforatable we felt. The staff immediatly helped us and took us to our room were we were going to stay. The room was clean and nice, it had the feeling of being at home. We were so welcomed my kids started to want to play and werent so shy anymore. Within a week of staying at FESCO we were started looking for housing and apply for jobs because the staff were so friendly and eager to help us and so easily to communicate with. This experience has been a good life changing experieance for me, my wife and my kids. We are so happy and very fortunate to be in this program, it has made me very happy and greatful to know that there are people that care and understand how challenging life can get especially when you don't have any place go or who to ask for help. THANK YOU FESCO for all the great work you guys do!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

working as team to achieve my goals

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

n/a

November 7, 2011

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November 7, 2011

I want to thank FESCO'S BANYAN house for being there for me and my family when I was facing homelessness. I had been incarcerated and lost custody of my children. I was re-unified with my children after I completed a live in drug program, but had to be in a place that was approved by Child Protective Services. I got employment and was renting an apartment in a drug infested area in Oakland. My Child Welfare worker was concerned not only for my children but for me being in that enviornment. I also could not afford the rent anymore and had to leave. My chldren and I were homeless for awhile and my Child welfare worker applied for us at Banyan and we were accepted into the program.The place is wonderful, it is quite and warm and the staff treat us with dignity and caring. Antoinet has applied for housing for us and I pray that we get approved into permanent supportive housing. We would be able to chose our own place in a good neighborhood and be safe and never have to worry about being homeless again. Thanks to all of the wonderful people that keep FESCO open and work so hard to help all of it's clients.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

all of the help that my family has been given, School clothes, tutoring, and great food and positive attention

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Change nothing but hope that good people help to keep this organization around for the people that will need it in the future.

November 3, 2011

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November 3, 2011

I came to FESCO/ Banyan House from a homeless shelter with my four year old son. I am very grateful to have a nice place that I feel safe in. Staff is very helpful to me. Antonette has been wonderful! She helps me on a daily basis with resources and informative information. She has been a very positive influence to me and my child. I am extremely happy and grateful to be working with Antonette! Thank you :) FESCO for being there for us

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

as a client

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

make it a longer program

November 2, 2011

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November 2, 2011

The economy has affected all people. I have gone thru two forclosures in two years. This is what brought me to FESCO. Looking for affordable house is hard with out the help of knoweledgeable people. Being at FESCO had given me time to look for a place I can afford. The staff had lots of knoweledgeable information if they did not have answers they took the time to find out what was needed. If I needed someone to talk too they took the time to give me the suport I needed. I was placed in a room with several other people going thru the program. The people I was put with where well screened to where I felt safe being in a room with them. Not having to worry about food or where I was going to lay my head at night gave me plenty of time to think about the things that where important. Getting my child to school and making sure she had a good lunch and support when she needed it. I know I can find the support I need at the Family Emergency Shelter Coalition! Thank You to all the staff! What a pleasure spending time with this organization!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Everything!

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes needed

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