I am pleased to share that the second week of July the Village reached 100% occupancy. It had hovered around 92% to 93% for a couple of weeks and then we were suddenly full. Now, 11 months after opening, 216 people now have safe homes. Here is some additional information.
- 260 people moved-in to the Village from July 2019 through June 2020; 69 people have moved-out.
- The average resident monthly income is $1,658
- 57% of the residents earn income through employment
- Average resident’s age is 51
- 73% of the residents are male
- The resident’s average credit score is 467
- 8% of the residents are veterans
- 27% own vehicles
- Common employers of people living at Village on Sage Street are Catholic Charities, VOA, Chewy, Chartwell, Tesla, Teleperformance USA, and SK Foods
- Major referral points are case managers, internet, and friends/word of mouth
- Most popular goals among the residents continue to be saving money, getting a better job, and going back to school
- 39% of departures have been positive (lodger moved-in to permanent housing, increased income, etc.)
- 31% of people departing reduced their debt
- 6% of people departing increased their income
Clark/Sullivan has offered to build and will shortly break ground on a shade pavilion outside near the fireplace to further improve the property.
A picture of the donor-recognition wall recently installed in the Village dining hall is featured above.
We are still fundraising so if you are moved by these accounts and wish to help us finish off the funding of the project, please contribute. We could use your help. Call me, I am happy to provide details.
Perhaps most meaningful is feedback from residents.
The following are comments from four residents who spoke with one of our staff last week. These are not cherry-picked positive reviews. The feedback we receive impromptu when stopping by the Village and run into residents is the same. I could not be happier with the outcome of this project. Please enjoy these brief excerpt comments and a bit of additional information at the end of this email. Click here to read their full comments.
About almost a year ago I found myself homeless, I got evicted from my apartment. Everything about this place I like. The room is the perfect size for me right now. I’ve been trying to save up a bit. It’s really safe here. This is probably one of the best places I have ever lived at in my life. I know it’s not a regular apartment, but it’s a good place.
I have never felt at home the way I feel here. My neighbors made me feel welcome the first day I moved in here. I was welcome when I came through the gate. I was like, ‘Wow.” I am 57 and I have a lot of health issues and everyone is very considerate. Everyone looks out for one another.
The bottom line is the Village got me out of the elements, out of a tent. I am on a fixed income, on SSDI. I only make so much money and I got priced out because of the rent.The rooms are small, but so what. You get used to it. I’m comfortable. I’m grateful this place exists. Thank God for Volunteers of America and everybody behind it.
It’s been a surprising experience for me. I’m 82 years old. I never thought in a million years that I would ever be in a situation like this. But I am extremely thankful that I have landed here. I have been amazed at how protective of me the fellows in my building have been. Ideally, I would just love for people to be more informed and more aware of the Volunteers of America. They are just awesome. I am on the waiting list for Sierra Manor 1.
Par Tolles and Allison Gorelick had a “wild” idea to buy a vacant Wyoming mining camp in February of 2018.
By May 2018, a collaborative partnership was pulled together and we decided to move forward and build a dorm-style living community that would rent for $400 a month. Without commitments for funding, we broke ground in July of 2018, and then in July of 2019, only 16 months after floating the concept, residents began moving in. This was a project made possible because of extreme need, because of faith, and because of collaboration.
It is important to say thank you to our key partners who very bravely said “Yes, we can do this,” Leo McFarland with Volunteers of America, Steve Aichroth with the State of Nevada, Housing Division, Bill Thomas with the City of Reno, and Jeff Bean with Q & D Construction. And it would never have happened without the support and leadership of Tom Gallagher of Summit Engineering. There are many more who did incredible work, and I hope you know how great your gift is to hundreds of people now living in the Village.
One final thanks to Jim Pfrommer, our Board Chair who said “Chris, we must do this.” He was right all along.