Nishauna Ball joined the Sojourner House board in June 2019 and joined the Sojourner House MOMS board in November 2019; however, her relationship with Sojourner House is a lifelong one and one that has played a pivotal role in the course she has taken in life. Nishauna is Program Development Manager at Pennsylvania Organization for Women in Early Recovery (POWER). In addition, the Penn Hills resident earned her Master’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh with a focus on Social Work, and in January 2020 she passed the Social Work Boards examination earning her licensure in social work. How did you first learn about Sojourner House? I am a former employee. I'm a former volunteer. And I am a former child that lived there. I've been a part of Sojourner House my entire … [Read more...] about Meet Nishauna
In the time of year when so many think about giving and giving back, Sojourner House is blessed with a great deal of love and support during the holiday season. One of the annual holiday traditions the residents and families enjoy is a Christmas dinner prepared and served by Mitzvah Day volunteers. Mitzvah Day is a holiday tradition where Pittsburgh’s Jewish community volunteers on Christmas Day. “We have Mitzvah Day on Christmas because we recognize that this is not our holiday and we want to make other people’s holiday better,” explains David Chudnow, the Volunteer Center Manager of Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh. “Sometimes that is in the form of a friendly face at a fun event like the dinner at Sojourner House or by helping out so that the staff at an organization can take … [Read more...] about Christmas Day Mitzvah is Holiday Tradition
Our staff are full of amazing talent and skill and we want to share their stories with you. And no better person to start with than our new Executive Director, De’netta Benjamin-Miller. Introduction Name De’netta Benjamin-Miller, Executive Director What interested you about this position? The leadership position interests me because it was aligned with my passions. I'm a licensed clinical social worker. I still practice as a therapist outside the Sojourner House. I've been doing this for 18 years. I have a passion and interest in dual diagnosis, but particularly helping individuals heal from trauma. The agency's vision and mission is very attractive. I like the fact that it's a small hard-working organization, which gives me the opportunity to really get to know all the … [Read more...] about Meet De’netta
Leah Lizarondo is the CEO and co-founder of Food Rescue Hero and 412 Food Rescue, social enterprises with a technology, logistics and civic engagement model that aims to fight hunger and promote sustainability by preventing perfectly good food from entering the waste stream and directly distributing to organizations that benefit those who are food insecure. Founded in 2015, 412 Food Rescue is one of the fastest-growing food recovery organizations in the U.S. Creating the infrastructure for national retailers. The technology platform, Food Rescue Hero, has prevented over 8 million pounds of food from going to waste via mobilizing over 8,000 drivers in 5 cities --food rescue heroes--the largest volunteer food transport network. 412 Food Rescue's innovative distribution … [Read more...] about 16th Annual Victorian Tea Honorary Chair, Leah Lizarondo
Oct. 25, 2019 New Sojourner House board member Ron Szwarc has wasted no time introducing himself to the Sojourner House community. This fall, Ron has spoken with the staff and Sojourner House mothers, not about his board work, but about his years in recovery. In 1981, Ron’s drinking led him to his first stint in rehab while in the Air Force. “I did everything on my own. Ego led me to believe you can do this on your own,” he said. He was dry for 15 years, but the stress of an international deployment in Malaysia found him back in rehab. After 20 years trying to do it on his own, Ron gave up and made a commitment, “I’m going to do everything AA says.” With decades of experience, Ron now dedicates his time sharing his experiences with others in recovery. As one of two keynote … [Read more...] about New Board Member’s Work is A Family Affair
Sojourner House and Sojourner House MOMS recently announced the appointment of De’netta Benjamin-Miller as Executive Director. Ms. Benjamin-Miller steps into the role on Oct. 14, 2019. The boards of both Sojourner House and Sojourner House MOMS recognize Susan Orr, Interim Executive Director and current Director of Development, for her service during the transition. The hiring of Ms. Benjamin-Miller is a result of a recruitment and hiring effort led by Nonprofit Talent. Ms. Benjamin-Miller most recently served as Familylinks, Director of Behavioral Health. She is a licensed clinical social worker with a Masters of Social Work from University of Pittsburgh and Bachelor of Arts from Central State University. “De’netta’s clinical experience and … [Read more...] about Please Welcome Our New Leader, De’netta Benjamin-Miller!