Most of us have probably faced the financial dilemma that occurs when there is more work to be done than there are funds available in the checking account to do the work. The house may need painting, the car may need repairs, the kids may need new clothes. The list goes on and on. It seems like there is never quite enough money available to do all that needs to be done.
This dilemma is not only true in your household but it is an ongoing problem with our state tax dollars and the many needs that exist throughout our state. Education, prisons, roadways, program upon program all need some of those tax dollars to meet the needs of our citizens.
While most of the public needs across our state are met, many of them come up a little bit short in providing the full measure of funds that are needed to help every recipient perform at the optimum level. One of the departments that continually falls a little bit short is the Department of Developmental Services, under which Oaks of Hebron receives most of its funding. The Regional Center system, which administers the services Oaks provides, receives about 1.5% of the $183,000,000,000 (billion) state budget.
To spare you all the mind-twisting accounting details, what this all boils down to is that it has become increasingly difficult to sustain high-quality support services here in Sonoma County. There has never been a more difficult time than the present to attract and retain the staff members we need with the wages we are able to pay.
It’s probably no surprise to you at this, point that Oaks needs the generous support of individuals, churches, and businesses to provide that little bit of extra income in order to maintain the level of services we have provided over the past 37 years.
We are asking you to consider a year-end donation to help us make up that little bit of difference in our budget. Either by check or online through our web page or Facebook page, we appreciate your support.
We appreciate the many individuals who have already contributed over $43,000 this year.
Your Tax Dollars at Work
There is something gratifying about seeing signs, like “Your Tax Dollars At Work”, along with the highway when tractors and workers are busy improving a road. Knowing that a portion of the money that is taken out of our paycheck is being put to good use makes it a little less painful to contribute those dollars to our government coffer.
Unfortunately, there are many programs that our tax dollars are directed towards that are impossible to identify with such a sign. One of those programs is the work that is done every day in our community by Oaks of Hebron. What you don’t see happening every day throughout our county with over 125 individuals are the support efforts that are happening with our 47 staff out in the field. They are doing such things as…
- Helping 3 individuals that use electric wheelchairs for mobility to get out of bed, get bathed, dressed and fed before they start their day.
- Assist 15 individuals to find and maintain minimum wage jobs in the community at such locations as Alsco Linen Service, Safeway, Luther Burbank Center, Lace House Linens, and Sonoma Mission Inn.
- Transport 12-15 individuals to and from our Growing Together Farm where they plant, cultivate, and harvest over 25 varieties of vegetables, fruit, and flowers. This team also cares for a dozen hogs and chickens.
- Cares for the housekeeping, cooking and life management needs of 5 households where 3 or 4 individuals share a home.
- Provide phone support and consultation for several clients who call the office each day to ask questions or just hear a supportive voice.
- Provide emotional support and counsel to a young man who is emotionally distraught because he longs for a romantic relationship that he hasn’t been able to establish.
There are numerous incidents and stories that could be told of the compassionate and supportive work that Oaks of Hebron staff are accomplishing each day. Though these efforts may be unseen publicly, “Your Tax Dollars are At Work”.