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23 Reviews
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November 25, 2013

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Review from Guidestar
November 25, 2013

I've been volunteering at InnVision/Shelter Network for the past 8 years. I tell people that their program is one of TOUGH LOVE. You have to want to return to permanent housing - and quickly - to be a client. In order to be at IVSN clients have to be working or actively looking for a job. The shelter provides lots of help including job placement, housing assistance, life skills workshops (budgeting, cleaning up your credit report, how to have a checking account) as well as classes on parenting skills and nutrition. They also provide interview clothing, help with resume and job applications, and practice sessions on how to interview.

And guess what? It WORKS! Over 90% of the families that complete the IVSN program are NEVER homeless again -- over 90% They have a cure for homelessness. And the biggest beneficiaries are the children who return to their own, permanent home, forever.

InnVision/Shelter Network has given me a hands-on way to help the most needy families in my local community. We need lots of volunteers - come join us!

IVSN gives the families that live in their shelters ALL the help they need

Ways to make it better...

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

More apartments -- there is always a waiting list of families who need help! More volunteers who are willing to do hands-on community service - the need is great!

More feedback...

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?

2013

January 12, 2013

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January 12, 2013

For two years in a row, InnVision has helped my group of volunteers get set up to contribute holiday dinner baskets for their holiday drive. It's helped us tremendously to have a group that can connect us with the closest shelters, and provide us with instructions on how to assemble the meals that would be great for families in need. Each time it's brought us closer together, and given us great opportunities to better our community with direction and resources.

This year, we hope to take advantage of more programs available and volunteer opportunities!

More feedback...

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?

A lot

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?

2012

January 6, 2013
1 person found this review helpful

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January 6, 2013
1 person found this review helpful

I began volunteering at CSI, the Commercial Street Inn women and children's shelter, because I had a bit of free time during my senior year of high school and wanted to make a difference in someone else's life. The staff and residents were friendly and welcoming; if anyone is looking for volunteering opportunities, I would definitely recommend volunteering for InnVision Shelter Network. When I volunteer, I generally watch the kids who live there for a few hours at the shelter in the afternoon/evening. Going to the shelter and seeing the children's faces when I came to play with them is great. I hope to continue doing this for a while!

More feedback...

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?

2013

October 10, 2012

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October 10, 2012

The Shelter Network does a great job of providing interim relief to people who have lost homes and/or are trying to get their life back together. The facilities are clean, and the folks at the front office really want to help. I was there as a volunteer to serve a meal during the holiday season last year, and everyone who partook in the dinner was really appreciative! I even took my kids that evening and they got a different perspective on life that day.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Likely

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

Some

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Okay

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

It gave me a perspective on what people who don't have a home go through.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

Okay. It was good because I felt I was sharing something I had with more people. It didn't leave a lasting feeling of satisfaction because it's easy to just forget a meal. I didn't feel like I did something that made these people's lives better.

November 17, 2011

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November 17, 2011

I do Volunteer at haven Family House in Menlo Park and now I am on the support committee.i have been at this for two years now and I have learned so much.it's a joy to help out down there.Everyone really cares and you can see the difference it makes in other people's lives.

More feedback...

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

August 17, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

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August 17, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

When I started at Shelter Network 2 months ago as a volunteer marketing intern I thought that this would be a way to gain experience in my college major, as well as be something nice to do over the summer. But it has turned into a learning and life experience that I will never forget. I have been privileged enough to be let into the inner workings of this organization, and let me tell you this place is a whirlwind of activity and a well-oiled machine all in one. The work it does changes lives every single day and every day I see greatness happen.
My time at Shelter Network has been more than designing webpages and making things look pretty. It has shown me the massive impact that one organization led by passionate and committed professionals can make. Shelter Network’s staff, volunteers, donors and clients make this an inspiring place, and I am honored that I could spend my summer here. It’s been an experience I will carry with me always.

The Great!

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

I saw people come here seeking a place to stay and immediately get directed to where they needed to be. I've seen this organization adapt any problems that arise with grace and selflessness, always putting the need of the clients first.

Ways to make it better...

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

give them more money! Shelter Network uses its resources to the fullest and any penny it received is spent in a way that will maximize community benefits.

January 30, 2010

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January 30, 2010

I work at the Food Closet for only a few hours a week, but I really enjoy the work and the wonderful co-workers, and helping the people who come in for supplies. Everyone in need has their own individual story and we get to know them a bit. From the feedback I hear from many clients, the Food Closet is a very important resource for them. Some are mentally ill and homeless, others have lost jobs and are temporarily staying with a relative or sleeping in their car and hoping to get back on their feet quickly. The Food Closet is a place an individual or family can come, without shame, to get some extra food and nutrition to make it through the week. Clients may come and "shop" up to 2x per week and very often leave with a healthy delicious bag of groceries with a balanced nutritional make-up. Palo Alto is a generous community with many resources and the "larder" at Food Closet reflects that bounty. Very often we hand out cartons of whole, organic milk and yogurt, or bags of home-grown produce from neighborhood gardens. Restaurants often donate whole meals such as rice and beans or pasta with turkey sauce. We always try to keep on hand small servings of condiments such as sugar, salt, coffee, spices -- this can lend not just flavor to a homeless person's meal, but dignity as well. I've personally seen the results of this organization in... I've seen and heard the results of this organization from weekly testimony from clients. We get to know many of them and develop a friendly camaraderie as we help them make the best choices for their needs. We have one client who is pleased when we have food in jars with a certain type of screw-on lid because "the squirrels can open the others." Others are grateful for the reliability of Food Closet and the consistency of good food and groceries available. Some are diabetic and have to stay away from certain foods but still can get a full complement of groceries, while others love sweets and leave with a piece of pumpkin pie and a pastry with a smile on their face. (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

see above

More feedback...

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

the ability to be of service in my own community right close to home. I've worked at other food kitchens, but the FC is more personal and bc of its small size, allows workers the opportunity to do many different jobs such as computer registration...

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

excellent. Very fair & open-minded & good at what they do. I find the other volunteers to be like-minded individuals who also enjoy the work. It requires a certain amount of understanding & compassion and I find that all the people who work here have both

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

January 29, 2010

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January 29, 2010

I came to the PA Food Closet 22 years ago as a volunteer working a weekly two hour shift. As years passed and the organization grew and changed, I agreed to become a part of the management team. I have managed for about two years with 4 other talented and committed women who have become my friends along with so many of our clients. (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

The food we dispense is critical for many of our clients and helpful to others trying to make ends meet. Our most valuable service, I think, is meeting (serving) our clients with hospitality and respect.

Ways to make it better...

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

No comment

More feedback...

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

Coming face-to-face with so many beautiful people.

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

dedicated, warm, respectful people.

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

establish an endowment fund to be drawn upon.

Ways to make it better...

there were an allotment for consistent repair and upkeep of our quarters.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Dwindling donations as demand rises.

One thing I'd also say is that...

No comment

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

January 29, 2010

more

January 29, 2010

I volunteer with a fun, kind group of people who want to help out their community. (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

More feedback...

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

becoming more personally aware of the needs of the homeless in our community.

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

dedicated, flexible, compassionate, understanding.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

January 29, 2010

more

January 29, 2010

The need in our community is growing. I have worked here for several years and feel personally related to our group. We work well together, help each other with difficulties and leave feeling "a job well done!" (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

The wonderful attitude of the volunteers.

More feedback...

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

The diversity of the people.

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

All very giving, friendly people.

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

Feed and clothe all the needy in the area.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

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