A Letter from Mr. Álvarez

Hello California Human Development,

My name is Martin Molina Álvarez, I am the son of Narciso Molina and María Rita Álvarez, I have 8 siblings, 4 sisters, and 4 brothers, I am the sixth child in the family. I was born on a ranch called Tiriran in Michoacán, Mexico. Before I was born, my father was already coming to the United States for 10 months out of the year and home with us two months each year. My mother was always a housewife; she was always with us taking care of us at home. From there my family moved to Pátzcuaro, Michoacán when I was 3 years old. In Pátzcuaro, I went to kindergarten, elementary school, middle school, and high school. I had a great childhood, great friends, everything was fun and we never needed anything, although we did not have extravagant things. The little I had was enough for me since all my friends lived the same as me, so I did not find anything strange. Since I was 10 years old, hidden from my Mom, I used to go with my friends to look after cars and wash cars to earn a little money. At age 12 I helped an uncle on Saturdays and Sundays to sell things at a soccer field. I was always doing something to earn money, although my mother did not like to see my younger brother and I work at that age.

I arrived for the first time in the United States on a Sunday, February 22, 2009, when I was 19, and the next day I was already working in the vineyards, where my father had worked for many years. We lived in a company house. After two years, my father was able to bring over the whole family and since then we are all here. The only exceptions are two sisters who got married in Pátzcuaro, where they are now. Since I have been here I have not stopped working, I have always been looking for better opportunities. I have worked in many places and truck driving is one of those opportunities that I wanted to have. For a long time, I have been wanting to be a class A truck driver. I have now succeeded in becoming a class A truck driver thanks to CHD and my teacher.

I want to say thank you to California Human Development and the opportunities that it provides its students, which are mainly farmworkers, who want to better their lives. I also want to thank my truck driving instructor, Mr. Aurelio Mendoza, who was very professional, and because of his dedication and good teaching methods I was able to succeed in the program and at my current job. My current job employs several California Human Development graduates who have been trained by my instructor. I have been doing very well at work and I am very excited for the future thanks to California Human Development.

Sincerely, Martin Molina

disABILITY Services Career Discovery Series

disABILITY Services is prepping for one of the biggest virtual events for their students. Through this Career Discovery Series, many of the students will start to discover a potential career path. For more information on this Career Discovery Series contact Tyler Wallace at 707.542.5609 or Tyler.Wallace@cahumandevelopment.org



Stonehouse Garden in Progress

Due to the sudden onset of the new realities of the pandemic, our residential treatment program has found new obstacles in providing our women with essential services. The need for social distancing and isolation has caused an increase in the amount of stress in their day to day. This has also made it more challenging for clients to support each other in recovery which is a major part of sobriety. Like every business, we’ve had to pivot our service structure to keep our women safe while focusing on recovery. Bringing our women outside gives them a safer way to build community and grow bonds. However, Stonehouse faced the challenge of having limited functional outside space. Through our generous partners and our willingness to adapt, earlier this year we received a grant that allowed us to install a gardening space where our women can do group sessions, walk, and relax.

This community garden will be a therapeutic, healthy, and relatively COVID-19 safe outlet that will strengthen the social bonds of the women at Stonehouse. This garden will bring the women together to unify and work as a team to grow the garden simultaneously with their commitment to recovery. This garden will become a physical representation of the beautiful work each one of these women is putting into their own recovery and enriching the lives of those around them.

We are planning to engage our women in a 12-week nutritional program to teach clients how to prepare healthy food to supplement the women growing food in the garden. Staff will educate our clientele on how a garden contributes to a healthy lifestyle reducing stress, being active, and finding self-sufficiency. Finally, the garden will help financially to support the food operations and cut back some food costs.

We have received the grant and started to build the community garden and it’s expected to be finished by end of 2021. We have recently set up a she-shed that will be used for storage, hobbies, or for workshop sessions. We can’t wait to share more updates on this project in the near future.

CHD Event Calendar January and February 2021

Take some time to read and mark your calendars to join CHD at some of our upcoming events!