Caminar Connections Summer 2019 Edition

Summer greetings!

We’re happy to share with you the summer 2019 edition of Caminar Connections, our quarterly newsletter of stories and insights from the transformative work you make possible for individuals and families.  

Let us introduce you to Karina, who found gainful employment, self-esteem, and confidence with the help of Caminar Jobs Plus. We also bring you photos and highlights from this spring’s 16th Annual Circle of Support Luncheon, which focused on “A Family’s Journey with Addiction.” And our CEO, Mark Cloutier, reflects on his almost five months at Caminar. 

Lives change at Caminar . . . thanks to you. We hope you enjoy reading how your help so positively impacts your community.


In the News: Caminar CEO Speaks on Childhood Trauma

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Our CEO, Mark Cloutier, was honored to be invited by the United States Consulate as part of the US State Department’s Speaker Program to speak last week at the Family Centre's Adverse Childhood Experiences 2019 Conference.

The Royal Gazette covered the conference and interviewed Mark about the impact of ACEs on the health and well-being of our society. 

Mark states, “A good way to frame what Aces offers us is, it’s really the unaddressed non-infectious public health emergency of our lifetime, in that we now have the evidence from an epidemiological perspective — what is a major driver of lifetime adult chronic diseases.”

Read more.

In the News: San Jose Inside Reports on Recent Vandalism at the LGBTQ Youth Space

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Our LGBTQ Youth Space, a program of our Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley division, was vandalized over the weekend. The door and three windows were smashed. We don't know the motivation behind the vandalism, but our team feels fortunate the damage was not worse, no one was harmed, and we remain operational. We are heartened by the outpouring of love and support from the local community. San Jose Inside reported on the incident, which you may read here.

In the News: KRON 4 News Reports on Recent Vandalism at our LGBTQ Youth Space

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We are sad to share that our The LGBTQ Youth Space drop-in center, a program of our Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley division, was vandalized over the weekend. Yet, we are deeply thankful to neighbor businesses and community members who have stepped up with support, encouragement, concern, and even donations for repairs.

KRON 4 News reported on the incident, which may be viewed here.

Molly's Story: Wellness is Support

Dokie Riahi, LMFT, School-Based Clinical Counselor, FCS division, accompanied by her service dog Boston, catches up with Molly.

Dokie Riahi, LMFT, School-Based Clinical Counselor, FCS division, accompanied by her service dog Boston, catches up with Molly.

Growing up, Molly had little stability in her young life. Fortunately, she could count on her teachers. It was through the intervention of a teacher, who noticed how Molly was struggling, that she found her way to our Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley division’s on-campus counseling services.

Molly was in the 8th grade when she started therapy and showed signs of severe depression. During sessions, Molly revealed to her therapist the extent of the emotional trauma in her life. Her parents both struggled with substance use. They held themselves together enough that Molly had a home in San Jose and food, yet they were unable to provide crucial nurturing and guidance for their only child.

Our therapist provided Molly with a safe place to work through her trauma, develop tools to manage her depression, learn and practice social skills, and build her resilience to cope with her ongoing life challenges.

When Molly transitioned into high school, our junior high therapist ensured that she connected with our therapist at her high school, Dokie Riahi, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT). This proved essential. Molly’s mother would pass away during her freshman year. Dokie was there for her.

Today, Molly is in her senior year of high school. She works part-time and just received her driver’s license. She’s convinced that her father won’t live to see her graduate. In therapy, Molly has a safe place to talk through and face her fears, prepare for the future, and learn tools to cope effectively with the effects of stress and trauma.

Thanks to the resilience Molly has built through consistent therapy, she has maintained her mental wellness and avoided decompensating, despite the stress with which she lives. She hasn’t followed in her parents’ footsteps of addiction. She’s stayed in school and secured employment. And, most critically, she’s held onto hope for her future.

“I can’t believe that there was a time that I couldn’t motivate myself even to get out of bed or take a shower,” says Molly.

Thanks to the consistent, high quality mental health care our donors and funders make possible, Molly has had support throughout the critical years of her adolescence. And that, paired with Molly’s spirit and dedication, has made all the difference.

Caminar Connections Spring 2019 Edition

We are pleased to share with you our spring edition of edition of Caminar Connections, our newsletter highlighting all that our supporters help to make possible for people in our communities in need.

This newsletter shares highlights of our 2018 Annual Report, including our fiscal year 2018 statement of financials, highlights, and impact. In addition, this edition features the story of Eddrena, who with the help of Caminar’s Supported Housing Program, has finally found a safe place to call home, heal from past trauma, and move forward in health and wellness.

Thank you to all of our supporters and donors who help to provide life-changing services to individuals and families as they move toward resilience, wellness, and independence. 

STEP Update: Expanding Services for LGBTQI Communities and with NARCAN Training

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A few months ago, we featured our Supportive Transition Empowerment Program (STEP), a program of our Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley division, on this blog. STEP provides addiction and recovery treatment services for adults in recovery while they are incarcerated and as they transition back into the community following release. Clients receive continuing care on their recovery journeys.

Since that introduction, the team has been working hard and expanding their reach, especially in support of LGBTQI (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, Intersex) communities.

The program has been providing well-received group services to individuals who are LGBTQI and housed in the men’s dorm at the Elmwood Correctional Facility. Given the success of the men’s program, the team is now exploring opportunities to start groups on the woman’s side at the Elmwood facility and to expand to the Main Jail.

Recently, representatives from the program visited New Haven Inn, an LGBTQ+ friendly temporary housing facility in San Jose. New Haven Inn is the only exclusive LGBTQ+ shelter in San Jose and the STEP team looks forward to working with New Haven Inn to direct clients to their specialized and culturally competent services, as well as to provide services directly to New Haven Inn’s population.

In addition to the expansion of important services specifically for LBGTQI communities, STEP will soon begin partnering with in-custody doctors at the Main Jail to provide training for Naloxone (NARCAN) distribution after a client’s release. Naxolone is a medication designed to reverse opioid overdose; proper use also requires careful monitoring after application. Training will instruct clients on how to administer NARCAN and will distribute the medication for the trained clients to have on hand in the event of an emergency in the community. This is an exciting move forward in the battle against opioid overdose.

The team is also expanding from a staffing perspective. A volunteer from the LGBTQI community will partner with the STEP group facilitator to provide support groups at New Haven Inn. The team also has welcomed two new Transition Counselors.

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Finally, STEP Manager Joseph Iacocca, LAADC/CADC-II, reported that the team was delighted to receive and screen 43 referrals last month. Six referrals were placed in treatment, 10 were placed in recovery residences, and the others are currently working with their Transition Counselors as they prepare to integrate back into the community.

We appreciate the dedication of the STEP team as they serve their clients and our community!


David Sheff to Speak at 16th Annual Circle of Support Luncheon

We’re delighted that bestselling author and advocate David Sheff will be the featured speaker for the 16th Annual Circle of Support Luncheon.

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David Sheff is the author of Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction and Clean: Overcoming Addiction and Ending America’s Greatest TragedyClean, a follow-up to Sheff’s New York Times #1 bestseller Beautiful Boy, is the result of the years he spent investigating the disease of addiction and America’s drug problem, which he sees as the greatest public health challenge of our time.

In 2009, Sheff was named to the Time 100, Time Magazine’s list of the World’s Most Influential People. The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids honored him with a Special Tribute Award “in recognition of his voice and leadership for families who are struggling with addiction.” He was also awarded the 2013 College of Problems on Drug Dependence (CPDD) Media Award, 2017 American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) Media Award, and 2017 American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) Media Award “to recognize his compelling portrayal of addiction and its personal effects on families and society as a whole.”

Beautiful Boy, published in 2008, was based on Sheff’s article, “My Addicted Son,” which appeared in the New York Times Magazine. The article won a special award from the American Psychological Association for “outstanding contribution to the understanding of addiction.” Beautiful Boy was made into a film, released in October 2018, directed by Felix Van Groeningen and starring Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet. Sheff also contributed to HBO’s Addiction: Why Can’t They Just StopHIGH: Everything You Want To Know About Drugs, a book for young adults written with Nic Sheff, published in January 2019. He is currently working on his next book, The Buddhist on Death Row: Finding Light in the Darkest Place.

Sheff is on the advisory boards of the The Jed and Clinton Health Matters Campus Program “designed to help colleges and universities promote emotional well-being and mental health programming, reduce substance abuse and prevent suicide among their students,” and the International Bipolar Foundation.

Along with the New York Times Magazine, Sheff has also written for such publications as the New York TimesWiredRolling StoneOutside, and the  Los Angeles Times Magazine. He has conducted seminal interviews with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, artist and dissident Ai Weiwei, nuclear physicist Ted Taylor, Congressman Barney Frank, Steve Jobs, Tom Hanks, Betty Friedan, Keith Haring, Jack Nicholson, Carl Sagan, Salman Rushdie, Fareed Zakaria, and others. He also wrote an award-winning documentary about John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, and a radio special about Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, both for National Public Radio.

Sheff graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, and lives with his family in Northern California.

The Circle of Support Luncheon will be held on April 26, 2019. Find out more about the event here.

Santa Clara Region Substance Use Programs Career Fair this Month

Our Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley division just announced two career fairs for our Substance Abuse Programs in Santa Clara County.

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We are looking for substance use clinicians and professionals with CCAPP credentials to join our team.

Please join us!

Wednesday, March 20 or Friday, March 29
2202 N. 1st Street, San Jose, CA 95131
3:00 - 6:00 PM

Expect to:

  • Meet hiring managers

  • Find job opportunities

  • Interview on the spot

  • Learn more about our Substance Use programs

Please bring updated copies of your resume.

Available opportunities include Substance Use Clinician and Case Manager, Substance Use Services

RSVP or contact us with questions at jobs@caminar.org
Visit our website at www.caminar.org/careers
Download our event flyer here.

Sharing Our Fiscal Year 2018 Annual Report

Caminar Fiscal Year 2018 Annual Report

Caminar Fiscal Year 2018 Annual Report

Because of you—our donors, community partners, government funders, volunteers, and friends—individuals and families receive the care they need to be empowered and supported as they move toward resilience, wellness, and independence. Thank you.

We are pleased to share with you our 2018 Annual Report, which details the life-changing work you make possible.

As you may know, the Caminar family has grown by welcoming Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley, Project Ninety, and Healthy Partnerships. These mergers have expanded our reach and strengthened our capacity to help our most vulnerable neighbors toward an improved quality of life.

This Annual Report reflects the combined organization and the combined impact: Last year, with your support, we reached more than 20,000 people of all ages with education, treatment, and support that prevent and promote recovery from complex conditions, including mental health, substance use, and family violence. 

Thank you for your compassion and generosity. Because of you, our most vulnerable neighbors have comprehensive support on the path to wellness.

Reservations open for the 16th Annual Circle of Support Luncheon

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Reservations are now open for the 16th Annual Circle of Support Luncheon.

Join us on Friday, April 26, in Menlo Park for this special community event featuring advocate and author David Sheff.

Tickets are complimentary and must be reserved in advance. Click here to reserve.

This year’s luncheon will feature David Sheff, author of the New York Times #1 bestseller Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction (recently adapted as a feature film) and Clean: Overcoming Addiction and Ending America’s Greatest Tragedy.

Proceeds from this event strengthen our circle of support for vulnerable individuals and families. With your support, we prevent and alleviate crucial issues affecting health and wellness, including mental illness, addiction, and family violence. Guests will be invited to make a donation in support of this work at the event.

For more information about this year’s event, underwriting opportunities, and hosting tables of your friends, please contact our Development Department at 650.513.1509 or development@caminar.org or visit the Circle of Support Luncheon website.

We look forward to seeing you!

Caminar Welcomes Mark Cloutier as CEO

Mark Cloutier, MPP, MPH

Mark Cloutier, MPP, MPH

After an extensive search, the Board of Directors is excited to announce that Mark Cloutier, MPP, MPH, has joined Caminar as CEO as of January 31, 2019.

Mark brings a unique set of skills and experience to his role at Caminar. With Master’s degrees in public policy and public health, he has extensive experience in leadership roles in esteemed nonprofit and philanthropic organizations in the Bay Area, including Horizons Services, San Francisco Foundation, the Center for Youth Wellness, Kaiser Family Foundation, and San Francisco AIDS Foundation.

Mark has dedicated his career to increasing access to quality health and supportive services and improving communities’ overall health and well-being.

Mark says, “Improving the health of communities begins with understanding the role of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and social determinants of health in predisposing individuals, families and communities to poor mental health and physical health outcomes. Caminar is in a unique position to address the comprehensive needs of individuals, families and communities though our trauma informed, evidence based clinical services and our collaborations with government, nonprofit and community institutions to focus on and remedy root causes.”

Read today’s press release announcing Mark’s appointment here.

Palo Alto Rotary Club Donates Gift Bags to our LGBTQ Youth Space

Adrienne Keel, Director of LGBTQ Programs at our LGBTQ Youth Space, and Harriet Pecot, Caminar’s Director of Development, stand alongside bags of gifts for the Youth Space from the Palo Alto Rotary Club.

Adrienne Keel, Director of LGBTQ Programs at our LGBTQ Youth Space, and Harriet Pecot, Caminar’s Director of Development, stand alongside bags of gifts for the Youth Space from the Palo Alto Rotary Club.

We are so grateful to the Palo Alto Rotary Club who met on Martin Luther King Jr. Day and put together bags filled with lots of goodies for our LGBTQ Youth Space. The bags included lip balm, hand sanitizer, gum, stress squeeze balls, LGBTQ bracelets, Starbucks gift cards, and a note from the club. Our Youth Space participants, who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning and ally youth and young adults ages 13-25 who live in Santa Clara County, greatly appreciated the thoughtful and generous gifts.

Adrienne Keel, Director of LGBTQ Programs at our LGBTQ Youth Space, and Harriet Pecot, Caminar’s Director of Development, were delighted to be present that day and share with the club members the work of the Youth Space and Caminar.

Sincere gratitude to the Palo Alto Rotary Club for including our programs in your service projects and for all you do for our community!

Announcing Our 2019 Circle of Support Luncheon Speaker, David Sheff

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We’re thrilled to announce that bestselling author and advocate David Sheff will be the featured speaker for the 16th Annual Circle of Support Luncheon.

David Sheff is the author of Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction and Clean: Overcoming Addiction and Ending America’s Greatest TragedyClean, a follow-up to Sheff’s New York Times #1 bestseller Beautiful Boy, is the result of the years he spent investigating the disease of addiction and America’s drug problem, which he sees as the greatest public health challenge of our time.

In 2009, Sheff was named to the Time 100, Time Magazine’s list of the World’s Most Influential People. The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids honored him with a Special Tribute Award “in recognition of his voice and leadership for families who are struggling with addiction.” He was also awarded the 2013 College of Problems on Drug Dependence (CPDD) Media Award, 2017 American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) Media Award, and 2017 American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) Media Award “to recognize his compelling portrayal of addiction and its personal effects on families and society as a whole.”

Beautiful Boy, published in 2008, was based on his article, “My Addicted Son,” which appeared in the New York Times Magazine. The article won a special award from the American Psychological Association for “outstanding contribution to the understanding of addiction.” Beautiful Boy was made into a film, released in October 2018, directed by Felix Van Groeningen and starring Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet. Sheff also contributed to HBO’s Addiction: Why Can’t They Just StopHIGH: Everything You Want To Know About Drugs, a book for young adults written with Nic Sheff, published in January 2019. He is currently working on his next book, The Buddhist on Death Row: Finding Light in the Darkest Place.

David is on the advisory boards of the The Jed and Clinton Health Matters Campus Program “designed to help colleges and universities promote emotional well-being and mental health programming, reduce substance abuse and prevent suicide among their students,” and the International Bipolar Foundation.

Along with the New York Times Magazine, Sheff has also written for such publications as the New York TimesWiredRolling StoneOutside, and the  Los Angeles Times Magazine. He has conducted seminal interviews with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, artist and dissident Ai Weiwei, nuclear physicist Ted Taylor, Congressman Barney Frank, Steve Jobs, Tom Hanks, Betty Friedan, Keith Haring, Jack Nicholson, Carl Sagan, Salman Rushdie, Fareed Zakaria, and others. He also wrote an award-winning documentary about John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, and a radio special about Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, both for National Public Radio.

He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley. David lives with his family in Northern California.

The Circle of Support Luncheon will be held on April 26, 2019. Find out more about the event here.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! We hope your 2019 is off to a wonderful start.

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Your support makes so much possible for our clients, including the opportunity to express and heal themselves through the arts. This beautiful photograph of the Golden Gate Bridge was taken by a client in our Expressive Arts program, which offers group workshops with Teaching Artists, including world-renowned photographer Michael Collopy.

Bridges are rich in symbolism, emblematic of connections, progress, and transitions. This photo represents the photographer's personal journey of wellness and recovery, made with the help of Caminar, while also invoking the journeys of clients and their families across our organization, and even our own.

2018 was a year of great connections and progress for Caminar, including the acquisition of Healthy Partnerships in May and the merger with Project Ninety in June. Combined with the merger with Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley in 2017, we have greatly strengthened our capacity agency-wide to support and empower the complex needs of the most marginalized local individuals and families as they move toward resilience, wellness, and independence.

Last year, thanks to the generosity and compassion of our donors, we served more than 20,000 individuals on their journeys toward progress and positive transitions.

Throughout the year, we look forward to sharing with you more stories about the life-changing services you help to make possible. Our 2018 Annual Report will be ready next month. And, we have great transitions on the horizon, including introducing and welcoming a new CEO to Caminar soon. Stay tuned!

Please mark your calendar for our 16th Annual Circle of Support Luncheon on April 26, 2019, in Menlo Park. The event will feature David Sheff, author of the New York Times #1 bestseller Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction.

A Look Back at 2018

With 2019 fast approaching, we look back on Caminar's impact in 2018.

Because of the generosity of our donors and funders, more than 20,000 people last year made progress in overcoming major life challenges and moved toward greater resilience, wellness, and independence. 

From all of us at Caminar and our Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley, Healthy Partnerships, and Project Ninety divisions, thank you!

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