2021 GRATITUDE REPORT
Letter from the President & CEO Kelly Matter
Avivo is HERE for good. For recovery. For advancement. And housing for all.
2021 was a year the world hoped the pandemic would end. It chose to rage on. It continued to threaten the health and well-being of our participants. But, Avivo stood strong. Avivo is HERE for change in the lives of Minnesota families and the community.
2021 was still one of the harshest years for people who face the toughest challenges – homelessness, struggling with substance use disorders or mental illness, and living in poverty.
Reports show the crises of opioid use and unsheltered homelessness are at alarming and all-time highs. Families living on the lowest wages are overwhelmed and struggling, and employers cannot find workers.
Fortunately, Avivo is HERE for families in Minnesota. Avivo uniquely pairs its housing, chemical and mental health, training and employment services, whenever possible, to support personal paths of health and economic mobility for each person we serve. Because of your commitment to Avivo:
- More than 11,000 individuals and their families benefited from Avivo services.
- 1,664 individuals were served to find or maintain housing to avert homelessness.
- 3,200 people accessed our treatment, recovery and mental health services.
- 1,414 individuals entered jobs and careers.
- 1,250 individuals and their families moved off public assistance and into work.
Avivo advanced justice, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives to further its commitment to undoing racism and eliminate disparities as a shared experience of Avivo employees, people served and guests.
In the following report, you will discover why Avivo’s work is so critical to increasing the well-being of families and communities. For individuals who need us the most, you helped make all the difference. Because of you, Avivo is HERE for Good. For All.
Thank you for believing everyone deserves the chance to live well and work well!
President & CEO
Avivo is HERE.
We work to end HOMELESSNESS. We provide EDUCATION and training. We support RECOVERY and mental health. We prepare people for EMPLOYMENT and success.
2021 At a Glance
Avivo is HERE to end Homelessness.
Our teams continue to do whatever it takes to help individuals experiencing homelessness take their next best steps to permanent housing. Avivo Village, a non-traditional shelter model that’s the region’s first-ever indoor village of 100 tiny houses, completed its first year of serving people living unsheltered in Hennepin County. Street outreach, hotel-to-home program initiatives and housing case management services combined to provide effective and COVID-aware responses to helping 1,664 individuals find and maintain housing.
“Being in my own housing has really given me purpose. I see good things in my future. The future’s looking great for me.”
Eric was living on the streets for five years and trying to hold down a job. A street outreach worker helped him get into Avivo Village, our transitional housing shelter focused on helping individuals find permanent housing. He was connected with the supports he needed to move into an affordable apartment. He is working on his career and life goals. Having a home allows him to spend time with his children.
Avivo is HERE to provide Education and training.
Avivo Institute of Career & Technical Education offered in-person and virtual career education programs, training healthcare and computer technicians and students in business and computer applications and information technology. The school achieved re-accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF).
“Avivo really prepared me for an IT career. If I hadn’t had training like what I had at Avivo, I wouldn’t have been successful.”
Philip endured multiple layoffs and decided a career change was the answer, rather than another short-term job. Deciding on a career in information technology (IT), he enrolled in Avivo Institute for Career & Technical Education. He was selected for an IT internship at Avivo after graduating, which gave him experience in a tough job market during the pandemic. His IT certifications, combined with the hands-on experience, helped him quickly land his current job!
Avivo is HERE to support Recovery and mental health.
Avivo is the place mothers elect for treatment, because at Avivo mothers and their children can recover together. Avivo offers substance use disorder, outpatient treatment for individuals and both residential and outpatient treatment for mothers and their children. Avivo’s mental health services and mental health clinic support individuals who live with mental illness and are underserved with limited access to services.
“I know for a fact that if I didn’t have housing when I went to Avivo I would’ve been good for maybe three months… having somewhere to lay your head at, to be safe… that sense of security through your journey is crucial.”
Because mothers can go through treatment at Avivo with their children, Sharon reunited with her 15-year-old daughter when she entered Avivo’s program. She shared it was “better than Christmas!” Now two years in recovery, they’ve moved into their own apartment. Sharon is working for an emergency shelter for homeless youth and happy she is able to give back.
Avivo is HERE to prepare people for Employment and success.
Avivo is expanding the EMPath Mobility Mentoring® model beyond its three-year pilot and incorporating the approach in its employment services that serve families living on public assistance. It involves coaching participants in five areas: family stability, well-being, financial management and employment to ensure long-term economic mobility. In 2021, Avivo also concluded a 12-month, universal basic income pilot. Thanks to the generosity of philanthropist and Avivo donor Nancy Somers, 15 Avivo participants received $1,000 a month to help stabilize their lives and advance economically.
“[Jacqueline at Avivo helped me] with continuing my course work at Avivo… connecting me to interviewing… and Avivo’s [UBI] grant program.”
When the pandemic hit in March 2020, Pamela’s training halted. She lost supports and could not work. With Avivo’s help, she completed her training and found employment. Participating in Avivo’s guaranteed income pilot program gave her regular monthly income that helped her focus. She found a full-time job, was able to purchase a “little bitty” car, cover costs for childcare and set aside some savings. (photo credit: Max Nesterak/Minnesota Reformer)
Support & Financials
Thank you! You help propel Avivo’s mission forward.
Because of your continued engagement and support, Avivo remained steadfast and present for the more than 11,000 individuals and families we served.
Support & Revenue
Matt & Maria Hultman
Matt and Maria have been supporting Avivo since 2008. Matt discovered Avivo while working at UPS through his employer’s United Way campaign. According to Matt and Maria, supporting Avivo is personal. “We lost someone very dear to us who was impacted by chemical dependency, mental illness and homelessness. We truly believe if we had found an organization like Avivo then, they would have had a chance at living a healthy life.” In addition to supporting Avivo financially, they have volunteered to lead practice interviews for Avivo participants, adopted families to provide holiday gifts, helped participants with job seeking, and more. “We are inspired to support Avivo as they work to build stronger communities by helping others.”
The Kingdom Builders, Plekkenpol Builders, and John Kraemer and Sons, Inc.
Avivo is very excited to have partnered again with build partners to renovate apartments for families in its transitional recovery housing. We remain grateful to The Kingdom Builders, Plekkenpol Builders, and John Kraemer and Sons, Inc. who renovated six apartments with funding in part by the Housing First Minnesota Foundation and the Patrick and Aimee Butler Family Foundation. This gift of home will give to families for generations to come.