Home Fund helps family avoid eviction

EDITOR’S NOTE — For 21 years, Peninsula Daily News readers in Jefferson and Clallam counties have supported the Peninsula Home Fund.

Today, we feature another in a series of articles that provides a window into how the fund operates and who benefits from our readers’ generosity.

The next article will appear Wednesday.

FORKS — When it rains, it pours in Forks — and that’s not simply a metaphor in the Strid household.

When Brad Strid, 36, and his wife, Leah, felt the floodwaters of financial debt sucking them under, the Peninsula Daily News’ “hand up, not a handout” Peninsula Home Fund was the first to throw them a lifeline.

“The Home Fund saved us by giving my landlord a voucher for $100,” says the father of four boys, Brett, 13, Eric, 11, Ryan, 8, and Caleb, 1 ½ months.

“He was able to cash that in and then allowed me to work off the rest working for him in the trailer park.”

The Home Fund grant was the “first step to help us avoid eviction and get current on the rest of our bills,” says Brad.

“If people hadn’t helped us out, we’d be living out on the streets or in a family shelter.”

It’s been a rough year, but things are looking up.

Starting in January, Brad will start work full time for a commercial trucking company that freights frozen foods for large companies.

When he starts driving, he will make $450 a week for five weeks and then 28 cents a mile, “which is supposed to average out to $750 a week driving their truck,” says Brad.

Experiences over the last year of needing — and receiving — help emphasized moral lessons that Leah has instilled in her sons.

“I’ve always tried to teach my boys to be empathic toward others,” says Leah.

“I was really proud of Brett.

“There was a child who couldn’t buy a composition notebook he needed for music. [Brett] got a new one and gave it to him.”

In spite of being one of scores laid off in the flailing economy, between his unemployment stipend and his wife’s work as a home care aide, the family had been able to squeak by financially while Brad hunted for a new job.

Then they found they were expecting a fourth child.

In September, the doctor ordered Leah on mandatory bed rest for the last two months of her pregnancy.

Baby Caleb was born Oct. 21.

Leah, 32, tried to prepare in advance for her loss of income while caring for an infant by signing up to work part time as a mystery shopper, a job that typically involves visiting a store, making predetermined purchases and evaluating the customer service.

While this can be a legitimate job, in Leah’s case, it turned out to be scam that resulted in $900 stolen from her checking account.

“We were so stressed with the whole thing of losing all that money,” says Leah.

“We just kind of looked at each other and said, ‘What do we do now?”‘

The family found help through OlyCAP.

OlyCAP is nonprofit Olympic Community Action Programs, the No. 1 emergency care agency in Jefferson and Clallam counties.

It also screens the applicants for the Home Fund and distributes the funds.

Leah says Rachel Chilson at OlyCAP “just stepped in and found programs to help us out.”

Through an Olympic Workforce program, Brad received training and graduated with a commercial driver’s license.

Through the same program, he was able to get a job as a truck driver.

It required him to take a bus to Salt Lake City for a four-week training course.

He didn’t like being away from the family, “but I need to do what I can to provide,” says Brad.

No deductions — a ‘hand up’

The PDN’s Peninsula Home Fund — a safety net for local residents when there is nowhere else to turn — is seeking contributions for its annual holiday season fundraising campaign.

From Port Townsend to Forks, from Quilcene and Brinnon to LaPush, it’s a “hand up, not a handout” for children, teens, families and the elderly.

All the money collected for the Home Fund goes — without any deductions — for hot meals for seniors, meeting rent, energy and transportation needs, warm winter coats for kids, home repairs for the low-income, needed eyeglasses and prescription drugs, dental work, safe, drug-free temporary housing . . .

The list goes on and on . . .

Begun in 1989, the Home Fund is supported entirely by Jefferson and Clallam residents.

Individuals, couples, businesses, churches, service organizations and school groups set a record for contributions in 2009 — $230,806.95.

With heavy demand this year, the carefully rationed fund is being rapidly depleted.

Since Jan. 1, the Home Fund has helped more than 2,200 individuals and families like Brad Strid’s on the North Olympic Peninsula.

Money almost gone

The last of the money collected in 2009 is expected to be exhausted this week.

Peninsula Home Fund is a unique, nonprofit program:

• No money is deducted for administration or other overhead.

Your entire donation — 100 percent, every penny — goes to help those who are facing times of crisis.

• All contributions are fully IRS tax-deductible.

• Some people call the PDN’s Peninsula Home Fund “shoestring philanthropy.”

Money from the Home Fund is usually given out in small amounts, normally up to $150.

And assistance is limited to one time in a12-month period.

But even though the dollar figures are small, the impact can be big, in huge, life-changing ways.

• Instances of help are designed to get an individual or family through the crisis — and every effort is made to put them back on the path to self-sufficiency.

That’s the “hand up, not a handout” focus of the fund.

In many instances, Peninsula Home Fund case managers at OlyCAP work with individuals or families to develop a plan to become financially stable — and avoid a recurrence of the emergency that prompted aid from the fund.

And, as necessary, Peninsula Home Fund contributions are often used in conjunction with money from other agencies, enabling OlyCAP to stretch the value of the contribution.

• Your personal information is kept confidential.

Peninsula Daily News does not rent, sell, give or otherwise share your address or other information with anyone, or make any other use of the information.

Applying for a grant

To apply for a grant from the fund, phone OlyCAP at 360-452-4726 (Port Angeles and Sequim) or 360-385-2571 (Jefferson County).

There’s also an OlyCAP office in Forks — 360-374-6193.

If you have any questions about the fund, contact John Brewer, Peninsula Daily News editor and publisher, at 360-417-3500.

Or e-mail him at john.brewer@peninsuladailynews.com.

Peninsula Daily News publishes stories every Sunday and Wednesday during the fund-raising campaign listing contributors and reporting on how the fund works.

Contributions so far

While most of the money is raised between Thanksgiving and Dec. 31, the fund itself never closes.

Donations of any amount are always welcome.

Here is a list of donors whose contributions were received between Dec. 16 and Dec. 22 — thank you very much for making a difference in the lives — and futures — of your neighbors:

• Wayne and Charlotte Duchow, Port Angeles — $100.

• Lorna Konopaski, Port Angeles — $100. In memory of Warren and Marty Konopaski.

• Sonny Chaussee, Betty White and Nancy White, Port Angeles — $200. In honor of our wonderful family and friends. Have a great Christmas and 2011. We love you all very much.

• John W. Warrick and Ruth Jenkins, Port Angeles — $125.

• Hugo and Bev Velasquez, Sequim — $100. For whoever needs it most.

• The Sons of Norway, Port Angeles — $100.

• Carlene Brown, Sequim — $100. In honor of Jan and Dan Cummings.

• Joe and Dee Blanchard, Sequim — $50.

• Jerry and Jackie Schwagler, Port Angeles — $250.

• J&J Construction of Port Angeles Inc., Port Angeles — $250. In honor of employees of J&J Construction.

• Lynn Langford, Port Angeles — $100.

• Mark and Diana Schildknecht, Sequim — $250. In memory of Fred Balser.

• Mary Jane Schmidt, Port Townsend — $100. In memory of Bernard and Mary Andrews.

• Joanne Fleming Mann, Sequim — $200. In memory of Jack and Katie.

• Andrea Alstrup, Sequim — $100. In memory of Kenneth Alstrup.

• Jerry and Margaret King, Forks — $1,000. In memory of Olive King.

• Judith Beaver, Sequim — $250. In honor of my extended family.

• Beta Sigma Phi, Sequim — $50. In memory of Pat Pringle.

• Grace Covenant Fellowship of Sequim, Sequim — $300.

• Olympic National Park Employees’ Association, Port Angeles — $200.

• Park View Villa Residents Fun, Port Angeles — $500.

• Chul and Kay You, Port Angeles — $300.

• Ron and Merine Allen, Sequim — $250. In honor of Bill and Norma Allen.

• Ron, Kathy and Kelsey Hansen, Boulder City, Nev. — $300. In honor of the Hansens, Slacks and Meeks.

• Gail Tate, Port Angeles — $200. In memory of Judith Pettersen. She believed in the goodness of most and was sad for the rest.

• Ken and Marge Hansen, Port Angeles — $300. In honor of Ron, Sheryl and Kristi.

• Henry and Judith Bernard, Eatonville — $100. In honor of Rachel Fondren.

Many thanks also to these donors (who requested that the amount of their donation be kept private):

• Dottie Hopkins, Port Angeles.

• Don and Edna Chicarell, Sequim.

• Nancy and Mary, Port Angeles. In memory of Unc Ron and Brother Ron Farrington. We are so glad we had you in our lives. You not only left us with great memories but brought us so much joy. We really miss you. Love you forever.

• Nancy, Angie, Eric and Ronald Hansen, Port Angeles. In memory of Cliff and Cliffy Hansen. You brought such joy to our lives. Now we are left with only memories. These will never be enough. We love and miss you more than any words can say.

• Deborah Willis, Port Angeles. In memory of Mom, Dad and Derek.

• Dorothy C. Melly, Port Angeles.

• Robert and Marinette Howard, Sequim. In memory of Ellen and Jo.

• Dale and Judy Burke, Sequim.

• Russ and Janet Holt, Sequim.

• Tom and Michelle Gagnon, Port Angeles. In memory of Dayle Seaton.

• Bob and Lucille Schmitt, Port Angeles.

• Bob and Verna Edwards, Port Angeles. In honor of Ruth Mix.

• Betty H. Paulk, Sequim.

• Gordy and Pat Sexton, Port Angeles.

• Linda Button, Port Angeles. In honor of those who have lost everything.

• Frederic Robinson, Sequim.

• Marc Reinertson, Port Angeles.

• Dan and Eve Farrell, Port Angeles. In memory of C.J. Sommer.

• John and Darlene Mjoen, Port Ludlow.

• April Kilgore and Monroe Stringham, Port Angeles.

• Philip and Beverly Rich, Port Townsend.

• Don and Clare Hatler, Sequim. In memory of Stuart Macrobbie.

• Mr. and Mrs. George Norris, Port Angeles. In honor of our son, Steven Norris.

• Eugene and Lois Larsen, Port Angeles.

• Bill and Sandy Bloor, Port Angeles.

• Ray and Sandy Thomas, Carlsborg.

• Jon and Sheri Judd, Port Angeles.

• Betty Gordon and Michael Moss, Sequim.

• Larry Davidson, Sequim.

• Penny Ervin, Port Angeles. In honor of all our men and women in uniform.

• Carolyn Gill, Sequim. In honor of the Money family and Smith family.

• M.D. Van Rossen, Port Angeles.

• Homer and Karla Muto, Port Angeles.

• Shirley K. Peterson, Sequim. In memory of Arnold Peterson.

• Gary and Linda Reidel, Port Angeles. Christmas love and happiness and good health in the New Year to our dear cousin Jan Harrison and in memory of her husband, Bob. Wishing Christmas joy and New Year blessings to our dear friends Mary Brelsford and Mike Sorenson.

• Danna M. Owens, Port Townsend.

• Margo Petersen-Pruss and John F. Pruss, Port Angeles. In loving memory of Maxine Manhas.

• Sandy and Nancy Goldstien, Sequim.

• Naomi and Tom Foley, Sequim. In memory of Glenn Holtzer.

• Kristin Ecklund and Stewart Harris, Sequim. In honor of Clallam and Jefferson counties’ emergency responders and logistical volunteers who delivered services and supplies to Haiti this year. Thank you!

• Bruce and Margaret Shaver, Sequim. In memory of Bill Oliver.

• Pacific Mist Books, Sequim.

• Pat Wisen, Sequim.

• Bob and Carol Philpott, Port Angeles.

• Lois Barner, Port Angeles.

• Jean Tyson, Port Angeles.

• Dana and Sally Dolloff, Jacksonville, Fla.

• Karla Strutzel, Sequim.

• Bob and Kathi Pressley, Port Angeles. In honor of Florence Swanson.

• Kathy Grissom, Port Angeles.

• Helen Kushman, Port Angeles.

• Theresa Gross, Sequim. In memory of Jack L. Gross.

• Janet and Leo Dodge, Port Angeles.

• Don and Vicki Hinrichsen, Port Angeles.

• Robert and Karen Eldridge, Sequim.

• Arnold and Debbie Schouten, Port Angeles.

• Janet Bartlett, Sequim.

• Rolland and Diane Kenitzer, Port Angeles.

• Lucille M. Peet, Port Angeles.

• Kevin and Sue Ryan, Port Ludlow.

• Wayne and Tracy Fitzwater, Port Angeles.

• Carol and Chick Carmichael, Port Angeles.

• Mary J. Klay, Sequim.

• Pat Beltz and Don Claussen, Sequim.

• Glenn and Betty Armstrong, Sequim.

• Randi and Heather Hansen, Port Angeles. In memory of Phyllis Arndt.

• Freia Palmer, Port Angeles.

• Craig Williams, Sequim. In memory of Astid L. Williams.

• Donna and Eric Miner, Sequim. In honor of all single-parent dads.

• David Brubaker, Sequim. In honor of David, Anita and Laura Brubaker.

• John Schuy, Sequim. In memory of Berni.

• William and Sherry Evans, Sequim. In memory of Capt. James G. Evans.

• Kent F. and Nancy M. Osborne, Redmond. In memory of Maxine Manhas.

• Lissa Munro and Paul Butler, Sequim. In the name of the Maurie Munro family of Dallas, Texas.

• James and Barbara Johnson, Walla Walla.

• Douglas Cudd, Port Angeles. In memory of Carole Cudd.

• George C. Curington, Port Angeles.

• Brenda Mosler, Sequim.

• Roy and Pat Jones, Port Angeles. In honor of Bob and Jean Steele’s 70th wedding anniversary.

• D.B. and M.J. Richards, Sequim.

• Robbin and Patricia Hammel, Port Angeles. In memory of Dayle Seaton.

• Norm and Sondya Rose, Port Angeles. In memory of Maxine Manhas.

• Don and Phyllis Thompson, Port Angeles. In memory of Mathilda Thompson.

• Margaret Weed, Port Angeles. In honor of Merelene and John Helpenstell. Merry Christmas!

• Jacob and Karin Dethlefs, Sequim.

• Ray and Donna Guerin Family Foundation, Sequim. Happy Holidays! Our thanks to you for making the world a better place.

• Shirley and Bob Widdicombe, Sequim.

• Margo Donze-Sanders, Sequim. In memory of my brother.

• Barbara Hughes, Sequim.

• Velma (Winters) Springfield and Robert L. Springfield, Port Angeles. In loving memory of Harold Winters and Lee Springfield.

• The Safeway Pharmacy Crew, Safeway Store No. 1492, 110 E. Third St., Port Angeles. In honor of our many friends and customers who help make our job fulfilling. And in memory of the wonderful people we have lost over the year.

• The Toggery, Port Angeles.

• Marie L. Beam, Port Angeles.

• Steve and Linda Bailey, Carlsborg.

• Velma Magner, Port Angeles. In memory of John Magner.

• Bill and Robin Bains, Port Angeles.

• Carmelinda Wiley, Port Angeles.

• Betty H. Paulk, Sequim.

• Diane Kaufman, Port Angeles.

• Marci Newlon, Sequim.

• Mad Maggi, Sequim.

• Annemarie Mende, Port Townsend. In loving memory of Sue and Don Mende.

• Dave and Kath Gronning, Port Angeles. In honor of the Eighties, one Ninety and Finley.

• Dave and Kath Gronning, Port Angeles. In memory of Kathy, Agnes, Randy and Stan.

• Sharon Lohman, Sequim. In honor of Dave and Dee Morris and family.

• Judith West, Port Townsend. In memory of Jenny.

• Mr. and Mrs. Neil Eklund, Sequim.

• Emery and Lila Winters, Port Angeles. In memory of our parents, Maxine Willis and Emery and Nancy Winters.

• Walter and Bonnie Davison, Port Angeles.

• Barry Savage, Quilcene. In honor of The Quilcene Godfather.

• Thelma J. Claplanhoo, Neah Bay. In memory of my wonderful husband, Edward Claplanhoo. I miss you so much. Also in honor of our dear friends Pastor Frank and Jean Cole. Thank you.

• Rob and Cindy Tulloch, Port Angeles.

• Gary and Ann Colley, Port Angeles.

• Dick and Judy Owen, Port Angeles.

• Larry and Pat Ledbetter, Port Angeles.

• Jeff and Barb Dixon, Port Angeles. In memory of family and friends — Joan Dixon, Patti Long and Don Kitchen.

• Cindy Weidenheimer, Port Townsend. In memory of Bill Babcock and Kenneth Hafner. You defined integrity and character. Still missing you.

• Nancy Hafner, Port Townsend. In memory of Ken Hafner and Bill Babcock.

• Grant and Patsy Simpson, Sequim.

• Fred and Michele Bailey, Port Townsend. In memory of Herman Logsdon.

• Rudy and April Hiener, Port Angeles. In memory of Ken and Charlotte Bradford.

• Bob and Cathy Claney, Port Angeles.

• Don and Barbara Smith, Port Townsend.

• Milton and Roberta Mickey, Sequim.

• Paula Schwabe, Carlsborg. In honor of all my friends.

• Chad and Janine Bowechop, Neah Bay. May the good Lord shine a light on you like the morning sun.

• Monte Reinders and Sally Pfaff, Port Townsend. In memory of Jane Anna Athy.

• Suzanne W. Hadley, Forks. In memory of Ben and Christina Wilson.

• Donald Eggert, Sequim.

• Jack Murphy, Port Angeles.

• John and Sue Miles, Port Angeles.

• Susan Cange, Sequim.

• Charles and Corrine Horton, Sequim. In memory of our parents.

• Bruce and Carol Von Borstel, Sequim.

• Jim and Julie Rukstad, Port Angeles.

Many thanks also to these donors (who requested anonymity):

• Sequim — $50.

• Sequim — $25.

• Port Townsend — $100. In honor of Robert Larson.

• Port Angeles — $500.

• Port Angeles — $500.

• Port Angeles — $25.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Port Angeles — $150. In honor of Valerie Cunningham.

• Sequim — $870. In honor of God.

For several years, we have been setting aside our tithe money to give away.

At first, we gave it anonymously to people we would see working hard at the malls.

Then we began to pray for direction to people who really needed it throughout the year.

The following are some of the recipients:

• A soldier so he could go home to see his family before going to Afghanistan.

• A Northwest Indian Nation to help their senior citizens.

• A mother of two who had just left an abusive husband. She was able to buy heat for her home for the winter.

• A couple who was behind in their mortgage payments.

• A woman who needed $1,000 for the deductible to buy a diabetes monitor.

These people were brought to our attention when we least expected it.

We both have been the recipients of this kind of gift, so all we suggested was when their lives turned around, if they could, they would pass the gift along in some manner.

This year, we are happy to find an organization that helps many people and does an excellent job of reaching them when they are in need.

Since this not our money but God’s, we feel privileged to be able to pass His money along to others.

Thank you for your service. Merry Christmas to all, and God bless.

— Anonymous in Sequim.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Sequim — $100.

• Sequim — $50. In memory of Neil Jervis.

• Port Angeles — $50.

• Brinnon — $300.

• Port Angeles — $250. In the name of Christ.

• Sequim — $1,000.

• Sequim — $100.

• Sequim — $50.

• Livingston, Texas — $50.

• Sequim — $25.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Port Angeles — $200.

• Port Angeles — $300. In honor of Lillian K., Dorothy R., Timothy R.

• Sequim — $100.

• Sequim — $50.

• Sequim — $100.

• Sequim — $500.

• Sequim — $1,000. For peace, justice and tolerance.

• Sequim — $100.

• Sequim — $50.

• Carlsborg — $150. In memory of George and Louise Simonson.

• Port Angeles — $25. In memory of Harold Andreson.

• Sequim — $50.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Port Angeles — $1,000. In honor of Kay, Scott, Andrew, Stuart, Maggie, Ren and Sam.

• Sequim — $100.

• Forks — $1,000.

• Port Angeles — $25.

• Port Angeles — $25. In memory of Bob Boardman.

• Port Hadlock — $100. In honor of Christopher Cross.

• Sequim — $25.

• Port Angeles — $50. In memory of Oma and Granny.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Sequim — $25.

• Sequim — $200.

• Port Ludlow — $10.

• Carlsborg — $5,000.

• Sequim — $200.

• Port Townsend — $100.

• Port Townsend — $50. In honor of our daughter.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Port Ludlow — $25.

• Sequim — $10.

• Port Angeles — $200.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Port Townsend — $20.

• Port Angeles — $200.

• Port Angeles — $25.

• Port Townsend — $25.

• Port Townsend — $20.

• Port Ludlow — $100.

• Sequim — $1,000.

• Sequim — $1,350.

• Port Angeles — $25.

• Forks — $150.

• Sequim — $50.

• Sequim — $100.

• Sequim — $100.

• Sequim — $100.

• Nordland — $50.

• Port Angeles — $30.

• Port Angeles — $50. In honor of our Lord Jesus, the Reason for the Season.

• Port Angeles — $110. In honor of Rachel Corrie.

• Port Angeles — $30.

• Carlsborg — $15.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Sequim — $100.

• Port Angeles — $100.

• Port Townsend — $100.

• Sequim — $100.

• Chimacum — $50.

• Neah Bay — $200.

• Sequim — $100.

• Port Angeles — $25. In honor of Nina Rumore.

• Port Townsend — $100. In memory of loved ones and colleagues.

• Port Angeles — $1,000.

• Port Townsend — $75.

• Port Angeles — $75.


HANDWRITING CAN BE hard to decipher at times.

Please report any errors in this list to John Brewer, 360-417-3500 (there’s voicemail if he’s away) — or e-mail him at john.brewer@peninsuladailynews.com.

We’ll rerun the listing correctly.

Our sincerest appreciation again to our donors.

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