February 2, 2023

For years, Michelle Rubillos has taken care of cats in her Japantown neighborhood in San Jose, feeding, repairing and elevating them. She is impressed by the enjoyment these rescued cats convey her. “He helped me with my psychological well being,” Rubillos stated, smiling at Chaplin, a stocky black-and-white furry ball rescued from across the nook practically a decade in the past.

She abruptly wanted a serving to hand.

Rubillos has confronted a sequence of life-changing challenges over the previous yr when she misplaced her full-time job as a content material author simply earlier than the 2021 holidays after which suffered a severe knee damage in March 2022 that required surgical procedure and rehabilitation. She realized, “I am unable to pay the lease.”

She held onto her one-bedroom residence for some time, piecing collectively financial savings and earnings from childcare, homeschooling, and voice appearing.

“I didn’t need to ask for assist,” she stated. She has household in Napa who may take her in, however after greater than 20 years within the job, she turns 38 in December and would not need to lose her group and entry to healthcare. Or her cats. When she bought injured, “issues simply bought out of hand.”

Her partial earnings was inadequate and her financial savings ran out. So she googled “Bayside low-income rental housing help.”

“I discovered an inventory of 15-20 organizations and known as every of them,” she stated.

After many lifeless ends, Bay Space Neighborhood Well being’s homelessness prevention system was the primary path to open. She was warned that some work could be required, corresponding to making use of for a job and offering monetary paperwork, however Rubillos fortunately complied.

By this system, she was capable of obtain a retroactive lease low cost for Might, June and July, in addition to partial rental help via November. Now she works a bit of extra and is on the lookout for a full-time job, with extra assets that the group has related to her. Renting assist gave her time to heal from her damage, work on her psychological well being, and keep in her residence with a constructive outlook on the longer term.

Dr. Zetty D. Web page, III, CEO of Bay Space Neighborhood Well being (BACH), says their rental help program and the historical past of Rubillos are nice examples of how “every well being middle is modeled to satisfy the wants of its communities.” They function 27 clinics within the Bay Space and primarily present well being care on to low-income residents, together with psychological well being, dental care, and different necessities.

By serving to people who find themselves struggling to pay their lease, “you may put your cash the place the motion is,” Web page stated, retaining individuals like Rubillos of their houses. That is particularly vital in a high-price housing space just like the Bay Space, he says.

By Want Ebook donations, the group plans to offer monetary assist to 80 households who need assistance paying their late PG&E, water, trash, web and cell phone payments. This help may ease the buildup of debt that may result in housing instability and evictions.

Web page emphasizes that a lot of their job is to satisfy individuals the place they’re and assist them entry different assets to deal with any underlying points that threaten the steadiness of their houses.

“I want to see much more,” Web page stated of direct rental help, which caters to people and households at fast danger of changing into homeless.

A decade after Web page retired to work at Bay Space medical facilities, Alameda County’s Tri-Metropolis Well being Middle and Santa Clara County Foothill Neighborhood Well being Middle have merged to kind the Bay Space Public Well being System, which now serves these in want from Union Metropolis. to Gilroy. It’s certainly one of 1,400 federally certified well being facilities within the nation, serving greater than 75,000 individuals, totally on low incomes.

In line with the group, 80 households have obtained help via the Homeless Prevention System, serving to 230 individuals keep of their houses.

Rubillos is a bit of nervous about what is going to occur subsequent. “It is going to be onerous with out their assist,” she stated, “however now I do know what to do.” She utilized for a full-time job and bought extra freelance work as her knee improved.

“I’m very, very joyful that they gave me a breather after 20 years of constant work,” Rubillos stated. Hesitating to ask for assist, “I advised myself I am being profitable and I deserve some assist.”

As a result of she requested for assist, she was capable of keep in her residence and proceed her efforts to take care of Japantown’s stray cats. She helps feed a close-by wild colony, additionally releases sterilizer traps to regulate the inhabitants, and finds houses for pleasant stray animals. And about as soon as per week, she drives round on the lookout for misplaced cats and reunites them with their homeowners.

“I’ve tremendously improved my psychological and bodily well being with rental help,” Rubillos stated. “They assist me do extra than simply give me my lease,” she stated, “they assist me get my life again on monitor.”


SERIES OF BOOK OF WISHESWant Ebook is a 501(c)(3) non-profit group operated by The Mercury Information. Since 1983, The Ebook of Wishes has been releasing a sequence of tales through the holidays that discuss in regards to the needs of these in want and invite readers to assist fulfill them.

WISHThe donations will assist Bay Space Neighborhood Well being present monetary assist to 80 households who need assistance paying their late PG&E, water, trash, web and cell phone payments. Purpose: $40,000

HOW TO GIVEMake a donation at wishbook.mercurynews.com or mail the coupon.

ONLINE ADDITIONALLearn extra tales from the Wishbook, view pictures and movies at www.wishbook.mercurynews.com.

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