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2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Doors Of Change, Photocharity, DBA

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Youth Development

Mission: Solving Youth Homelessness through empowerment and self-sufficiency. We offer a safe and supportive environment to come and create music and art, without judgement or criticism.

Results: Seen over 1700 homeless youth ages 12-24 in our Free Music & Art class in Ocean Beach. Seen over 1800 youth in outreach (2x/week) Provide Social Services which includes; ID's, birth certificates, bus passes, help with resume and job applications, Medi-Cal., Dental and Vision, referrals for shelter, housing.

Target demographics: Homeless and disadvantaged youth ages 12 - 24 years old.

Direct beneficiaries per year: More than 1,700 youth have participated in our Music & Art program, more than 250 have earned instruments and art supplies.

Geographic areas served: San Diego, Ocean Beach area, helping homeless youth ages 12 - 24 years old.

Programs: Our Free Music & Art program which is a weekly Sunday and Thursday event. We provide free music and art lessons, dinner, clothing, shoes, hygiene and social services. The music program includes music mentorship and lessons in guitar, ukulele, keyboard, drums, violin and mandolin. Instruments and art supplies are earned after attending 6 classes

Community Stories

53 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've volunteered as a music instructor with Doors of Change for almost four years. Each Sunday is a new experience that I look forward to all week. I get to spend time teaching music to, and learning from, the homeless youth who live in Ocean Beach, where I've lived since 1992. Before volunteering and meeting Jeffrey, I was confused about the "homeless problem" in OB. Now, after meeting hundreds of new friends, I'm convinced that the time we spend together week after week is healing, and really helps these often misunderstood kids to feel like they belong.
I've personally helped two young men find housing that got them off the street. One opened his own business and is doing quite well.
Each week I feel like I receive more than I give. It's a wonderful place, full of love and acceptance. OB is fortunate to have Doors of Change!

Donor

Rating: 5

I don't believe many people realize that San Diego is 4th in the USA for youth homelessness! The work accomplished by Doors of Change, under it's founder, Jeffrey Sitcov, is amazing. As a public educator in San Diego County, I had first hand experience with our homeless youth and know how very difficult it is to build trust with homeless young people. I personally joined Jeffrey and his team during one of the evening outreach trips. We combed the beach, caves, streets and I helped the team as they spoke to the youth and offered supplies, food, blankets, etc. and a message....they don't have to be alone; there is help. Since that time, I have attended fundraisers, observed the "Taking Music and Art to the Streets" program and recognize the enormous value of Doors of Change. Donations help these kids directly!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I had been witness of the wonderful work that DOC do with youth on the community.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been teaching violin every Sunday at Doors of Change for about four years now. I've been thrilled to give away dozens of violins to my students who return for at least six lessons. One of the most gratifying things to me is when students I haven't seen for a while come back, often excited to show me how they've progressed on their instrument since I last saw them. In fact, this happened just last week. A student who I hadn't seen in over a year returned, and I was very impressed that she had clearly continued to improve her playing since we last worked together. She also told me that she had been taking classes in permaculture (interesting profession--look it up!) and as soon as her life is completely in order, she would like to come back and teach music with Doors of Change. Talk about gratification!
The bottom line for me is that the program is so much more than music. It's the magic of making connections with these young people. If they don't have enough confidence-building opportunities in their everyday lives, they can develop those with us. We've seen this again and again, and it's what makes the whole Doors of Change experience worth it, both for the young people we cater to, as well as the volunteers.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with Doors of Change/Photocharity for 5 years now, and this is an amazing charity. You will be hard-pressed to find an organization that is more dedicated to its recipients than DOC. The Founder, Jeffrey Sitcov, is passionate about helping homeless youth. He has a heart for helping these young men and women who often have never had a trustworthy adult in their lives. He is able to earn their trust through music, art, food, and time and helps those who want to help themselves. He is truly using his God-given talents and purpose in all he does!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The "Taking Music and Arts to the Streets" program at Doors of Change has served homeless youth for years. The compassion, love and respect that is shown builds a bond of trust that many of these kids have never known. Not only do they learn how to play music...but every year more services have been added like haircuts, yoga and most importantly a gateway to other services that can get them off the streets permanently. These youth have bright futures ahead of them and Doors of Change has a unique nurturing program that reaches out and gets results.....

Previous Stories

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is an amazing charity that helps homeless youth....I have experienced the outreach and the award winning "Taking Music and Arts to the Streets" programs. These youth are given the opportunity to learn a musical instrument and have the chance to earn one of their choice. This amazing program builds trust with these youth and gives them the opportunity to be placed in the housing program to help permanently solve their homelessness. Doors of Change is an amazing non-profit that can help change the lives of so many young people who have just started on their life journey.

Sarah Mj J.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering with Doors of Change is the highlight of my week. I love doing art, yoga, and meditation with the participants. It's such a rewarding experience for me to be of service in my community through this non-profit. Not only are the founder and program director amazing individuals, but they are there helping others every chance they can. Seeing the uplifted spirits of the youth after they create art & make music and sharing in their successes as they accomplish goals on their journey to get ahead in life, is something one cannot put a price on. This program provides a safe space for disadvantaged youth to refresh, recharge, and refocus themselves, as well as access to resources and support in a very creative and fun environment. I love it!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It’s so refreshing to be a part of an opportunity to embrace and encourage youth in transit and to show them how much that are valued. JoAnn snd those who support the work at Doors of Change are a blessing to the many youth who benefit from music lessons and the arts offered to them. Along with care kits, clothing and hot meals donated to and shared at Doors of Change, youth are welcomed with warmth and personal support. Our organization, Cornerstone Koenonia Connections enjoys working with Doors of Change and preparing home cooked meals by Pastor Thomas & Dr. Ethel Sims. We look forward to strengthening volunteer networks for youth in Ocean Beach and other at risk populations throughout San Diego.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

In the couple of times that I have been so fortunate to help out at Doors of Change, I was instantly exposed to a loving, caring, and supportive environment. The staff were all there because they genuinely wanted to and the youth were all incredibly respectful and a true joy to be around. Working to provide individuals with practical skills that likewise hold personal value, DOC cares about making this program a success for all people that come in.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

From the staff to the program youth, Doors of Change (DOC) leads with a mission and a purpose that distinguishes them from other non-profits. Working not only for the community but with them, DOC creates opportunities for youth on a daily basis that goes beyond simply providing the basics. Looking to foster compassion, understanding, and perspective with the individuals DOC works with, a multidisciplinary team of educators, health care professionals, and community resources come together to work to address and minimize the risks associated with homelessness. Free of judgment and based on establishing trust, DOC understands the interworkings of what makes a non-profit successful and works continuously to provide the highest quality of respect, care, and services.

Serena J.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering, cutting hair for DOC for almost 4 years now! Every day I volunteer with them, there is a smooth flow to the program, clear boundaries with participants and a great amount of creative freedom.

Volunteers are ALWAYS cheerful to be there. Youth are full of gratitude and trust within the program....I get to have positive, deep conversations with most of them!

Youth tend to come back for more! Incentives for them to come to class are well recieved and consistent. Jeffrey and his team have been going steady for over 14 years, and it is no wonder why!!! I love and admire all of these generous, caring people!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Doors of Change is a a wonderful program where homeless youth in San Diego come together and receive support from the community and one another. I volunteer at the art program and love to see the kids expressing themselves through painting, drawing and other crafts -- and at the same time, gaining confidence, having fun, receiving social services, and getting a hot meal. It's rewarding for the kids and volunteers alike!

Mackenzie C.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Doors of Change is a remarkable group of people who all have so much compassion towards those less unfortunate. I've seen first-hand the effect Jeffrey, his staff and his volunteers have on the homeless youth of San Diego.

Watching them learn to play instruments and gain confidence is pretty amazing! The art program was also very neat and I had a lot of fun interacting with the teens and watching them paint, draw and sketch unique, one-of-a-kind pieces. Both the music and art programs allow the kids to have an outlet and gain confidence as they learn a new skill and a new way of expression. Thanks Doors of Change for all you've done and all you continue to do!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Doors of Change (DOC) is an amazing! Jeffrey Sitcov, their fierce leader, has the right vision to help these young adults. He guides them, surrounds them with love and teaches them to trust again. Sometimes life can get rough and with charities/programs like this, it makes it easier. I have volunteered for over 2 years and I couldn't be happier with the positive change i have made.
Be the change that you wish to see in the world.

Donor

Rating: 5

Doors of Change is a blessing to many. We are proud to serve dinner each Sunday at their "Taking Music & Art to the Streets" Program. The passion and commitment from Jeffrey Sitcov and his Team to help the youth homelessness situation in San Diego is inspiring. We've had the privilege of collaborating with DoC for 3 years and it's a blessing to make a difference to those in need. We look forward to continuing supporting DoC so they can expand the number of youths they serve. From the Heart, Elaine Therrien and Jerry Meunier, Co-Founders of Heartfelt Helpings.

Board Member

Rating: 5

Doors of Change. Changes lives of young adults and gives them the personal life skills, education, and support to make them productive contributors to America's finest city. What is so important in changing lives is the organization gives these young adults hope when many times they are hopeless and hope is what these young adults need.

I have learned more from these kids through meeting and working with them then I have taught them. Great organization where you know where the money goes a direct investment in young adults in our great city. A hand up not a hand out.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteer for Doors of Change at least once a month as an outreach volunteer, and I am always shocked by the humility, kindness, and drive these homeless and disadvantaged youth display when interacting with them.
The most inspiring moment for me happened last month - I met a young immigrant ready to get off the streets while doing outreach and convinced him to visit our class. Upon arrival, he immediately took advantage of the donated clothing and found himself a suit, dress shirt, tie and pair of shoes -he then approached me and asked me to teach him how to tie a neck-tie, because he knew he would need to look professional in interviews.
These teenagers and young adults want to change, they want better for themselves, they just need a helping hand to get started, Doors of Change is that helping hand.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In the past I've only ever helped feed the homeless. Working with Doors of Change they are able to do so much more. The opportunities and recourses available to the youth are priceless. The expressions on their face when they receive an instrument is priceless. The people that volunteer to teach the youth to play the instrument's are amazing. I love working with this group and look forward to continue to work with them.

Jennifer E.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I got to walk along and witness the founder of this nonprofit walk the alleys and streets of Ocean Beach and find and reach out to homeless youth. He was able to get them to open up, gave them water and a fresh pair of socks to start a dialogue, and many he spoke to took him up on his invitation for a free meal later that day accompanied by a free music lesson, an offer of clothing and toiletries. I wayched him give these homeless youth a sense of hope. This is a charity that works!!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Doors of Change is a wonderful organization! They truly help these kids in need to get off of the streets and in to safe housing. I have seen several of the kids truly turn their lives around and become happy, well-adjusted and employed members of the community. These kids can truly use our help and really want to improve their lives-they just need a chance and Doors of Change provides a chance for them!