JB Brown Event 2013

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABreaking through a major cultural tradition to receive an education. Overcoming the devastating challenges of a baby born with a life-threatening heart condition. An older adult staving off hearing loss that affected not only her quality of life, but that of her children.

These were the stories of just three of the recipients of JB Brown Fund scholarships/financial assistance that were shared at the JB Brown Fund Event 2013. The inaugural event was held at USA Properties’ Vintage Natomas Field in Sacramento, CA, on Thursday, October 3, 2013. With a crowd of approximately 85 invited guests honoring ninOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAe individuals who received college scholarships, while also celebrating the accomplishments of the JB Brown Fund as a whole.

The evening began with Geoff Brown, President of USA Properties Fund, providing his vision for the Fund. He told the crowd how important this fund was to him personally, and to his company, to be able to provide their residents with the opportunity to fulfill their potential, while also providing a means to assist people to overcome substantial challenges.

Sacramento Vice-Mayor, Angelique Ashby, then provided an inspiring vision of the future by sharing her own story of having been a 19-year old single mother, while also working her way through college and law school. She extolled the virtue of the partnership USA Properties and LifeSTEPS have built to help people of moderate means achieve self-sufficiency.

Next on the agenda, Beth Southorn, Executive Director for LifeSTEPS, congratulated the recipients for their courage in asking for help. She honored the donors for their generosity and encouraged everyone in attendance, stating that they were changing the world through their willingness to give, and to receive. Emotions ran high as our scholars began telling their stories.  

Scholarship recipient, Alia K., detailed how it is ingrained in her culture that women are not to be educated.

Alia JB Brown Event 2013 from LifeSTEPS on Vimeo.

The second scholarship recipient speaking at the event was Dario B.. For Dario, the turning point in his life came when his son, Noah, was born with a serious heart condition.

Dario JB Brown Event 2013 from LifeSTEPS on Vimeo.


Finally, Eleanor H., a resident of an USA Properties senior community, thanked LifeSTEPS and USA Properties Fund for helping her secure a hearing aid through the JB Brown Fund. “You not only helped me and reenergized my life, but you helped my children, too. They didn’t have to provide financial assistance to help me. Instead, they could continue to pay for my grandchildren’s college education.” Eleanor, the activities director for her community, has resumed her role with renewed vigor.

The JB Brown Fund is a partnership between USA Properties Fund and LifeSTEPS. The purpose of the program is to provide USA Properties residents with college scholarships, sports scholarships for youth, assistance for older adults, and a safety net for individuals and families facing financial crisis. The goal for 2013 was to raise $100,000. To-date, the partnership has raised $115,000.

The First Tee of Greater Sacramento 2013

The First Tee of Greater Sacramento is a program created to improve the lives of young people in the greater Sacramento area. They teach strengthening character, teaching life enhancing values, and promoting healthy choices through the game of golf and physical activities!Sept 6, 2013 - ASP First Tee Golf

For the past six weeks they came out to LifeSTEPS Silverado Creek property every Friday. They held golf lessons coupled with life lessons for ASP aged youth.  The kids have expressed really enjoying this great program and got so much out of it. Samantha, from the First Tee, said that this year had the biggest turnout in their history with LifeSTEPS! Congrats kids and remember to keep playing and stay healthy!

LifeSTEPS Senior Fall Prevention

UntitledWhile LifeSTEPS was teaching a class on Adaptive Devices at Heritage Park Senior Apartments in Cathedral City, the residents dialogue slowly transformed. Following resident dialogue, the subject turned into Falls & Fall Prevention.  On this particular day our Senior Regional Director of Social Services had the residents bring their favorite adaptive devices to share.

Resident Del shared his portable “Safety Grip Handle.” He likes the portable model because he can take it with him when he visits with his children and grandchildren. It gives him the confidence to travel knowing that he can take a shower and not fear falls because he has his own grip-handle. The handle works using suction, they come in different shapes & sizes.  1

 Ruth had moved into Heritage Park when they opened in 2004. She has kept the same unit this whole time. Heritage Park was able to install a permanent grip bar for her.  Ruth is one of LifeSTEPS most active participants.  She relies on a walker, but that doesn’t stop her from doing activities.  She just celebrated her 95 birthday and her two daughters took her on an Alaskan cruise to celebrate!  Ruth doesn’t let the fear of falling stop her from “living.”  She’s prefers to have the permanent safety grip in her apartment.  She doesn’t travel very much, and she knows her daughters “have her covered.” During the cruise they made sure they had the handicap cabin for her.  Also, she was able to use her walker comfortably during her whole vacation.

To see what you can do to prevent fall, check out the CDC website linked here for “What You Can Do to Prevent Falls” program and brochures!




Day of Hope 2013 a Day to Remember

Group Portrait 1 The gentle fairways and pristine gardens of the  Los Angeles Country Club provided an elegant and peaceful environment for the Day of Hope 2013 event. It was a day to remember for scholarship recipients, donors and the co-sponsors of the event, AMCAL Multi-Housing and LifeSTEPS.

With their parents and friends looking on, 10 scholarship awardees received honor from the Partnership for Hope. AMCAL’s Executive Vice-President, Maurice Ramirez and LifeSTEPS’ Executive Director, Beth Southorn introduced each recipient and presented them with their awards.

“Take this opportunity, go out into the world, and hit a home run!” Beth Southorn encouraged the recipients. “Not only will your world be changed, but you will change the world for others.”

SOH Close Up 2

Maurice Ramirez also introduced

the Partnership for Hope’s newest

undertaking, The Hope Society.

“The Hope Society is a way to keep our Hope scholars, donor investors, and the people at AMCAL and LifeSTEPS connected on a continuing basis.” Maurice said. “It will be a valuable resource to our scholars as they seek internships and employment after they graduate.”

MB Podium Check Kathia

Each of the attendees received a Hope Society pin as gift, and it was announced that a Hope Society Facebook page will serve as the communication hub for this new venture. The launch of the Facebook site will occur sometime in early October.

The Partnership for Hope was established by AMCAL Multi-Housing and LifeSTEPS in 2011. The purpose of the partnership is to raise funds for college scholarships, client emergency assistance, youth development activities, and employability services for residents at AMCAL properties served by LifeSTEPS. Thus far the Partnership has raised over $300,000. Since its founding, Partnership for Hope has awarded 23 individuals with scholarships and hundreds of residents have been supported through other functions of the fund.

Donations to the Hope Fund can be made by clicking the SUPPORT US tab.