How Will You Share Kindness Today?

Since launching our “50 Acts of Kindness” initiative back in August of last year, in honor of our 50th
Anniversary, we have had the privilege of serving our community is so many heartwarming ways.  From
coat drives, to toy donations; from beach clean ups to reading to children, each opportunity has been a
way to extend positivity beyond the day to day mission of our organization.

Far from the COVID-19 pandemic squashing those efforts, it has in fact amplified the need for kindness in
our communities, across our nation and around the globe. As we continue to journal our journey through
the remainder of 2020, please know that these are only the highlights; all the web pages in
the world could not contain every act of kindness our staff have shown over these past few months. #50AOK

25. Keeping Friends Hydrated | San Luis Obispo | September 2020

Noticing that a coworker wasn’t drinking enough water during their busy workday, a PSHH staff member gifted a water bottle to their colleague to help them stay on track and take care of themselves.

24. Monarch Butterfly Rescue | Santa Maria | August 2, 2020

With a heart for wildlife, PSHH staff member Gillian managed to keep a caterpillar safe for three weeks on her milkweed plant and then, when he went into chrysalis, for a further 3 weeks. This video was taken two hours after hatching, his wings were drying and then he began his first flight! After staying with her for an additional three days enjoying her plants and flowers, he headed off into the world to bless others with his beauty!

23. HelloSLO Free Pantry Donation | San Luis Obispo | July 23, 2020

Throughout the summer, Resource Development Coordinator Adriana Sousa has been stopping by the HelloSLO Free Pantry in a local neighborhood to drop off non-perishable items. These items can be picked up by anyone in the area that finds themselves in need.

22. Marigold Bloom | San Luis Obispo | July 22, 2020

In a time when the news seems to be filled with increased COVID-19 case counts and melancholy stories, it can sometimes be hard to see the positive. Recognizing this need to share the good moments with others, one of our staff recommended a stop by the marigold blooms in San Luis Obispo to stand in awe of their beauty as the sun set over these fields of gold. Thank you, Davis Foley, for sharing this cheerful discovery with those around you!

21. A Much-Needed Field Trip | Pismo Beach | July 11, 2020

After months of being cooped up inside due to the pandemic, a PSHH staff member got some much-needed fresh air and took a friend with a disability for a trip to Dinosaur Caves Park. It was their friend’s first trip outside in 20 weeks and when he saw this path marker, he said it was exactly how he felt – like a dinosaur coming out of the egg into the sunshine.

20. Pain Relief | San Luis Obispo | July 6, 2020

When a friend was suffering from a stiff neck after months of working from home, a PSHH staff member gifted them a neck pillow to help ease the pain.

19. The Gift that Keeps on Giving | Santa Maria | June 25, 2020

To cheer people up, a PSHH staff member has spent the summer months making and giving away these glass beaded wind chimes with little bells on the end. These bright and colorful gifts have continued to bring many smiles to those that have received them.

18. Recipe Sharing | Santa Maria | June 21, 2020

Unable to share her famous chutney with a friend who was missing the delicious condiment n the midst of stay-at-home orders, a PSHH staff member sent her beloved Granny’s 100 year old recipe so she could make and enjoy it for years to come!

17. A Sweet Note | San Luis Obispo | June 6, 2020

Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat or gloom of the global pandemic, could stop one of PSHH’s staff members from sending her characteristic cards of kindness. After the birth of a coworker’s first grandchild, she sent this lovely note to acknowledge the happy occasion.

16. Food for Flight | Santa Maria | May 19, 2020

Not able to get back into the tree for three days, this little chap stayed on a PSHH staff member’s front porch. Feeling sorry for the raven, she put fruit out for him to stay fed and healthy until he was strong enough to rejoin his family.

15. St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church Food Distribution | Santa Barbara | May 1, 2020

A PSHH staff member took some time to help out their local community members by volunteering with St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church to distribute food to those in need.

14. Supplies for New Homeowners | April 24, 2020

At the end of April and in the midst of the pandemic, 10 owner-builders finally finished building their homes after working on them for more than a year. While they were unable to celebrate with the usual key ceremony for this momentous occasion, PSHH staff put together house-warming baskets to welcome them into their new homes. In addition to a few food staples, these baskets contained a couple extra items to help keep families safe and healthy, including hand sanitizer and homemade masks from a few of our staff members, Ruth Callahan, Claudia Govea, and Gillian Cole-Andrews.

13. An Ear to Listen | Isla Vista | April 1, 2020

While many of us are experiencing challenges of isolation and loneliness, PSHH staff continue to care for our residents and check in on how they are doing. Recently, a resident who had lost their job and lived alone reached out to Jackie Wells, one of our Property Managers, as they were feeling hopeless and in need of a friend to talk to. Jackie, like many of our staff working directly with residents, was able to provide compassion and empathy to this individual in a time of unknown, as well as direct them to our Supportive Housing Program, which offers health and unemployment services to residents in need.

12. Masks for Staff, Family, and Friends | April 2020 – Present

In this era of social distancing and mask wearing, we have seen a need within our own organization to ensure our staff have the right equipment to care for one another and those close to them and to stay healthy while doing so. Shortly after our stay-at-home orders were put in place, a few PSHH employees, including HR director Nicole Ramos, Senior Portfolio Manager Jane Renahan, and Property Manager Maria Serna, stepped up to the plate and quickly began sewing masks to distribute to staff, family, and friends.

Apart from providing additional protection to keep those around us safe, these masks will continue to offer some peace of mind as we plan for the new normal once the “shelter in place” has been lifted.

11. A Friendly Voice | March 2020 – Present

Our social workers are tirelessly ensuring that our most vulnerable residents are able to meet their needs. They are providing weekly wellness phone calls to over 300 of our residents who have been identified as high-risk.

These wellness checks are ensuring that residents are aware of stay at home orders and have access to food, medication, and health care. Should any resident have difficulty meeting their needs, our social workers are connecting them with partner organizations for referrals and extra support.

During this stressful time, these calls also serve as a friendly voice of support and social connection to our residents!

10. Daily Meal Distribution | March 2020 – Present

To ensure our residents are well nourished and staying safe at home, PSHH Educators, Property Managers, Maintenance and Resident Services staff, have been working together in safe and social distant ways to collect and distribute over 700 meals daily to our most vulnerable residents. Meals have graciously been provided by local organizations such as the Food Bank and All Saints-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church.

9. Preparing Students for Distance Learning | March 2020

Our 15 educators immediately jumped into action upon ‘shelter in place’ orders to prepare our young residents with the materials needed to study from home. They provided students with work packets and supplied them with Chromebooks, access to reliable internet, and books so that every child can continue to participate in our education program.

8. Book Donation | Santa Barbara & San Luis Obispo Counties | March 14, 2020

Amidst the rapid transition into working and studying from home, PSHH Director of Education, Alejandra Mahoney, attended the Grover Beach Community Library book sale. There, she was able to collect 8 boxes of books to distribute to children across Santa Barbara & San Luis Obispo counties so that they have materials to read while staying at home.

7. Homeless Point In Time Count | Santa Barbara & Ventura | January 29, 2020

On January 29, team members from our Ventura & Santa Barbara offices volunteered in the Homeless Point-in-Time Count. The results of this important project informs future State and Federal funding in support of homeless services.

6. Community Warm Clothing Drive | January 2020

Santa Barbara County benefiting WillBridge
Ventura County benefiting Project Understanding
San Luis Obispo County benefiting 5Cities Homeless Coalition

5. Community Toy Drive | November-December 2019

Santa Barbara & Ventura Counties benefiting Toys for Tots, distributed by Unity Shoppe
San Luis Obispo County benefiting Toys for Tots, distributed by Salvation Army

Toys were distributed to children on the Central Coast just in time for Christmas!

4. 5Cities Homeless Coalition Food Donation | Grover Beach | November 27, 2019

PSHH Director of Neighborhood Development & Resident Services Rick Gulino and his family (pictured)
delivered a hot meal to the 5 Cities Homeless Coalition’s winter shelter the night before Thanksgiving to
help keep those in need full and warm during the rainy and cold weather.

3. Twitch Memorial Golf Tournament | Santa Maria | November 2, 2019

PSHH Compliance Specialist Chris Morrison (pictured with her 2 brothers and their teams) volunteered at the Twitch Memorial Golf Tournament – a fundraising event to support local student athletes through scholarships.

2. Community Food Drive | October 2019

San Luis Obispo County benefiting Friends of 40 Prado
Santa Barbara County benefiting Catholic Charities Santa Barbara
Ventura County benefiting Project Understanding

1. Creeks to Coast Cleanup | San Luis Obispo County | September 21, 2019

PSHH staff participated in the annual California Coast Cleanup Day, covering Morro Bay Dog Beach, Shell Beach, and Avila Beach. Collectively with other local volunteers, this cleanup saw over 16,000 lbs of trash and recycle removed from community parks and beaches in SLO county alone!