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Mar 09, 2017

Employee Spotlight— Roy Spencer

Every night of the week, a crowd of youth line up to get into our downtown Portland shelter where they get a warm bed and meal for the night. Preparing for their arrival every day takes a lot of work, including cooking their dinner. We talked to Roy Spencer, Porchlight Shelter Supervisor, about his job which includes managing and cleaning the shelter, doing light maintenance work and feeding up to 70 homeless youth daily. In addition to performing all of those tasks, according to his supervisor, Dennis Lundberg, “Roy will always step in when the shelter is short-staffed, going the extra mile for the staff and youth we serve. For example, this week he is on call 24/7 for 14 days straight.” Roy has been working for Janus for over three years. A soft-spoken person with an easy smile, he has earned respect from his peers and youth.

How do you start your day?

Every morning, after all the youth have left, I wash all the bedding, filling up six washer and dryers in the shelter. In between washing, I answer emails and then go into the kitchen to start meal planning. I try to reserve one or two days a week to cook meals that will last for a few days including the days I am not working. I also need to prepare meals that aren’t too complicated so I can produce enough food quickly using ingredients I have on hand. In the past, we received food donations from churches and community organizations, but that has diminished since Health Department regulations now require that donated meals be prepared in a licensed, commercial kitchen, not at home.

What are some favorite meals?

Although many of the youth like fried foods, I am limited to what I can cook, because we can’t fry, sauté or grill for safety reasons. So I make dishes like lasagna, taco casserole, vegetables and rice, which are always popular. We also have to offer vegetarian options too for the growing number of youth who don’t eat meat.

Where do you get food for the shelter?

I shop at United Grocers and Costco to get large quantities of food for our pantry and freezers. But we also get donations from bakeries, smaller grocery stores and Stumptown coffee. Occasionally I will drive to a donor to pick up a commercially-prepared meal like pizza or sandwiches. Sometimes we get donations from caterers who have extra food from an event.

What do you like most about your job?

There is always something different going on in the shelter with new youth passing through every day. It’s a dynamic environment. I have learned to be creative in dealing with the youth that come here, helping them as best I can.

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Sep 11, 2017
​Partner Spotlight: Home Builders Foundation

Brenda Ketah of Home Builders Foundation (HBF) likes giving people the opportunity to serve others. As Project Manager of HBF for six years, she does that every day—connecting people to service providers who need help restoring or maintaining their shelters or transitional housing for youth, women and children. HBF has been a Janus partner for many years, leading the Cordero House renovation, the energy retrofit of Buckman House and painting seven of our facilities. We talked to Brenda to find out more about HBF’s work in the community.

Aug 29, 2017
Dinner in the Vines

180 people enjoyed our annual “end of summer” Dinner in the Vines event at the scenic ArborBrook Vineyards in Newberg’s Chehalem Mountain wine country. Guests savored a Spanish influenced, four-course dinner from Crown Paella, selected wine pourings from ArborBrook Vineyards and live jazz by the Rob Bonenfant Quintent on a perfect summer evening.

Thank you to everyone who came and to our sponsors who helped make the evening a tremendous success: Jazz Sponsor, Greg Bauer; Wine Sponsor, ArborBrook Vineyards and Table Sponsors Magnacorp, Melissa Bauer, Harsch Investment, Home Forward, Kaiser Permanente, Shelly McFarland, Miller Nash Graham & Dunn, RBC Wealth Management, Barry Schrimsher, Albina Community Bank and The Standard. Click here to see more pictures.

Aug 28, 2017
Get A Columbia Sportswear Employee Store Pass Today!

Take advantage of this limited time special offer to shop at the Columbia Sportswear Employee store! Now through September 17, 2017 you and up to four guests can purchase any items at the Columbia Sportswear Employee store and 10% of your purchase will be donated back to Janus. Call 503-542-4636 to receive a store pass or email pvalenti@gmail.com.

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