Oops! You must enter a search term greater than 3 characters.

Invite reviews

Invite friends and colleagues to share their experiences with this nonprofit
24 Reviews
1234.8755
| 1 2 3 |
Write A Review
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

January 29, 2010

more

January 29, 2010

I have been volunteering at the Food Closet for the last year and a half. I have known about it and its service to the community since its inception. Before coming to the Food Closet - and continuing to the present - I have helped raise money for the Opportunity Center and am a coordinator for the Hotel de Zink, housed at my church during the month of March.

The Great!

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

the help it gives to unhoused individuals and those in need of extra help during these difficult economic times.

Ways to make it better...

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

More feedback...

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

Sense of community with other volunteers.

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

caring, compassionate, firm, helpful.

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

give significant to unhoused individuals and families in our community.

Ways to make it better...

I can't think of anything - this is the highlight of my week!

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

Lack of donations during the economic downturn.

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

Perhaps volunteers could visit middle school and high school groups to explain the needs of this community (ex. food drives should go throughout the year, not just during the holidays; clothing needs, etc) and get them involved/engaged

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 have been volunteering here for over two years. It's a wonderful group of people to work with! Selfishly, my circle of friends has widened. Unselfishly, it makes a big difference to have a hands-on approach to the difficulties the homeless and mentally disabled face on a daily basis (lack of food, shelter, and maybe above all human warmth). (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

The growing number of clients, the fund-raisers, the positive effect of word-of-mouth.

More feedback...

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

again, selfishly, the feeling of making a bit of a difference and the terrific people I work with.

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

Committed, hard-working, community-oriented, big-hearted, smiling most of the time. Lee Schroeder, who manages the FC on Thursdays is a very hard-working and committed manager. So is Pat Keicher on Fridays. They're amazing women.

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

Serve more people, expand, never go short on supplies.

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

(Director) Lori became by savior during "stop" gave me the benefit of the doubt. The program keeps me safe, gives me support, above and beyond. Most staff is very empathic. Most fellow clients are very nice. (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

myself, fellow clients. Case management is great, support, and follow thru, patience, empathetic!

Ways to make it better...

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

More feedback...

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

empathy

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

Great!!!!

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

Make a world of difference for communities to feel accepted (mental health).

Ways to make it better...

It's as good as it could get.

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

Only issue I have is lack of sleep :(

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

January 28, 2010

more

January 28, 2010

I have had a very hard time. For several months. Then i found out that Innvision could and would help me. They have and I am grateful. (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

Many people can and have made positive changes in their lives

Ways to make it better...

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

Make roles stick more.

More feedback...

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

all the resources they have and helped me while I've done them.

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

Above and beyond. God Bless.

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

Help more people, men and women.

Ways to make it better...

I did not have fee time

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

Myself

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

More money please

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

January 28, 2010

more

January 28, 2010

In April 2001 I was mourning the loss of one of my oldest and closest friends. I needed to get out of myself, and to connect with the community doing something useful for other people. I'd walked past the Food Closet often and one day saw a sign on the door saying that volunteers were needed. Almost on the spur of the moment I walked in. I've been glad I did so ever since. By pure chance it was Friday, between 2 and 4, and so I met the Friday day managers, Sandra Dhuey and Pat Keicher. I should state that most of what I saw applies to my experiences with them and my fellow volunteers on the shift. I've seen the results of this organization in... The Food closet provides food for cooking (not meals) as its basic service. There is no doubt this is needed in our community. People we serve have frequently expressed their appreciation for the food, and even those that don't testify to its essentiality indicate it because they come back and obviously rely on what we do. I have learned that we provide other, less tangible services. Our clientele are mostly pretty marginal in terms of social contacts. They value the Food Closet (at least the 2-4 Friday shift) because it is a place to go where they are treated with respect, where they are known, greeted, and asked after, and where they can get information on a wide range of other services e don't provide but to which we can refer them. I know this is true because of the way people act, because they return at the same time, and because on a questionnaire we asked several people said they liked to come to the Food Closet because "nobody treated them like they were low-lifes." Several clients have said that to me too. The staff were... I deeply admire Sandra and Pat for their qualities as excellent managers. Not every volunteer is equally good at every task, and Sandra and Pat do a very good job of making sure everyone can handle the variety of jobs needed by making best use of each of our particular abilities. When they go on vacation, we formally have a substitute manager, but I think they must find it an easy job because in fact all the long-term volunteers can work our shift with minimal oversight because we all have our jobs, can do others' if necessary, share the cleanup, and have confidence in making the decisions volunteers need to make, because we've had confidence put in us. We are a team. I bet these two women, Sandra and Pat, could be making good money somewhere, but their managerial skills wouldn't be either more needed or more appreciated! Even more important, I respect them for their relationship with our clients. They have decades-long acquaintance with some of them, and are regarded with respect and often affection. Skills usually considered part both of social work and psychological-social work are often necessary for dealing with our clients, for both volunteers and managers. The managers relate to our clients with humor, tact, patience, and compassion. The volunteers were...Long-term: I'd say all are doing good work and always to the best of their abilities, which range from good to superb, at various jobs, as is true in any organization I think. Some of the volunteers have actually blossomed remarkably themselves, in terms of their social abilities and developing skills to deal with a sometimes-difficult clientele. Mid-term (months to a year): I'd say generally well-meaning and reliable. We had one first-rate high school volunteer for a couple of years who had good organizational abilities and developed them during her time here. We also had one first-rate student volunteer from China. She was especially helpful in working with our numerous elderly Chinese clients with limited English. When she went home to Beijing she left us an array of hand-printed signs in Chinese to which I still direct my clients quite often. One thing I'd also say is... Occasionally, better communication from above-the-managers level to volunteers. My one irritation - which is pretty minor, and 1 in 8 years is pretty minimal- concerned a recent change in regulations. We put some in for hygienic reasons during swine-flu season, which our clients understood and appreciated. But we were also told to ask for identification from everybody. Neither they or I were told why - I asked and no one seemed to know - and some of the clients were offended and I found it embarrassing to demand ID from people I've known for 8 years. I'd have liked to see a more flexible policy where volunteers were asked to get ID from anyone they didn't know. As I volunteer I'd have liked a good explanation for the ID requirement, and one I could have given the clients, like the one about the swine flu regulations. (Entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

See first section

Ways to make it better...

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

I think managers and boards could answer this question better.

More feedback...

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

I enjoy being able to assist people, many of whom I've come to know and respect over the years. I enjoy the other people on my shift: my Day Managers, Sandra Dhuey and Pat Keicher, and my fellow volunteers, especially the long-term ones.

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

See first section

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

From my point of view in this organization, my wish list would be: - MORE FOOD. Serve more people. -Somewhat larger office-counter space -Be able to serve hot drinks to clients in winter - I'd like to have an enclosed space - New shelving

Ways to make it better...

Personally, I couldn't have asked for a better experience

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

Same as above, I would guess it's not having enough money.

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

See first section

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

January 28, 2010

more

January 28, 2010

As someone who does a lot of research on poverty, I like coming here because it reminds me of the faces behind the statistics. (entered by GreatNonprofits staff member on behalf of reviewer)

The Great!

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

gratitude from some clients.

Ways to make it better...

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

provide a caseworker here once or twice a month. Not everybody is comfortable going to the opportunity center.

More feedback...

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

getting to know the clients, comradery with others volunteers.

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

fun, caring, reliable, smart.

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

provide more casework to connect people with resources, services, crisis intervention.

Ways to make it better...

someone provided the Chinese-speaking clients who live at Lytton Gardens with a checklist in Chinese (and our rules).

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

pulling in more donations (food + cash)

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

provide periodic orientations for FC volunteers about all services available at op center.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

December 29, 2009

more

December 29, 2009

My daughter and I have volunteered within the children's programs,including Summer Camp, Family Bingo Nite, etc. We've also provided donations of warm clothing, new toys and teen gifts for the Holiday Toy & Teen Shoppe, where we volunteered thru the National Charity League. We've loved helping InnVision the Way Home and always feel appreciated! It's truly a wonderful organizatiopn!

The Great!

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

volunteering onsite where the children learn and play. We've also participated with my NCL philanthropic group in collecting school supplies, costumes, new toys, etc. knowing the items would go directly to the families in need.

Ways to make it better...

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

suggest they seek better ways of branding. InnVison should be a household name to assist with funding!

More feedback...

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

I know we've directly made a difference.The happy smiles of children and moms say it all! I've also met a woman, who with the help of InnVision, has changed her life for the better for herslf and young son. She's even the room mother in her child's class

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

...exceptional! Positive,energetic,and appreciative!

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

help generations of families and individuals...find the way home!

Ways to make it better...

...experience could not have been better. This is an exceptional organization!

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

funding for all of the many programs...there are over 20 sites!

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

more outreach and PR could go a long way.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

December 6, 2009

more

December 6, 2009

I have been volunteering at the Opportunity Center, which is a program of InnVision's, since I was 12. The Opportunity Center is an apartment building of sorts, that provides housing for once homeless and at risk families and singles. The Center helps these people achieve stability through counseling, medical care and assistance with job searches. The Center also has washing machines, dinners and an after-school care program for the families' children. In addition, there is a Drop-In center for the homeless that cannot be housed in the Center. The Drop-In center allows homeless people to use telephones, email, television, laundry machines and other appliances that make life easier for these unlucky folks, and hopefully get them off the streets. The Opportunity Center is the perfect representation of InnVision's mentality and goals. InnVision strives to equip homeless people with the tools to get off the streets, or at least achieve stability.

Photos

The Great!

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

seeing once homeless families move out of the Opportunity Center and live self-sufficiently.

Ways to make it better...

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

I think they spend a lot of time perfecting their programs, but they have a difficult time sufficiently fundraising. They would be able to achieve even more if they had more funds.

More feedback...

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

How I was accepted as a legitimate volunteer even at my young age

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

Kind and interested in doing their job

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

Set up another program to help the homeless, and get even more people off the streets

Ways to make it better...

I can't think of anything

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

Funding

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

This is an excellent organization!!!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

December 6, 2009

more

December 6, 2009

I am a regular, weekly volunteer at Innvision's Food Closet in downtown Palo Alto. I hand out food to clients, register clients and prepare and organize food for distribution. I enjoy interacting with clients and the challenge of trying to be a bright spot in what can be a very discouraging time in their lives. It is great to be part of an organization which maintains enough structure and rules to make it sustainable both in terms of serving clients and getting donations and yet still realizes the support role its people can playin interacting with the clients

More feedback...

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

THe balance they strike between "following rules" and maintaining a friendly and generous tone in serving their clients.

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

THe managers of the Friday shift are wonderful warm, understanding, yet authoritative people. THey have built a loyal staff, most of whom have been there for years, largely due to the joy of working for these managers

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

Filter by reviewer role:

Support This Nonprofit

Help this nonprofit get more reviews

5 tips for getting reviews

5 tips for getting reviews...

  1. Sending an email to clients, volunteers, donors, board members, and other partners with a link to your profile page.
  2. Putting a link on your Web site
  3. Including a link in your email newsletter
  4. Putting a link in the signature of your email
    Putting a link on your facebook page and status updates
  5. Tweeting out a link to your twitter followers