Dear Friends and Supporters of Saint John's:

A big thank you to everyone who participated in our successful first virtual fundraiser, Polo for Change! From the sponsors to those who participated in the silent and live auctions and fund-a-need as well as those who chatted live on YouTube, we are grateful to all for your contributions to the ongoing mission of Saint John’s. Much of your contributions will support our Distance Learning Program as Abra Ruthenbeck, Director of Childcare, shares in this issue. 

I cannot believe that I’ve completed six months as the “new” CEO at Saint John’s. As I think about my time here I see reflections of myself in the women and their children. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to hang over all of us, it’s apparent that we each need compassion, patience and support—fortunately, that’s Saint John’s strength. In addition to the challenges of COVID-19, the women at Saint John's spend much of their time talking to themselves in unimaginable ways. It’s a practice learned from a very young age and a way of life. 
At times, we all struggle with that inner voice that creates doubt or fear. Yet, we must have patience and compassion for ourselves, just as we would for someone else who is struggling. As we move toward the holidays and our lives become busier, may we all take a moment to be thoughtful and kind to those who cross our paths and offer kindness to ourselves as well.

With gratitude,

Julie Hirota
CEO, Saint John's Program for Real Change

P.S. We’re also announcing the re-opening of Plates Café and new adjustments that complement our vocational program, leading to continued job placement for our women! 
Thank you for Supporting Polo for Change!
Freddie Silveria and Julie Hirota
California Grocer's Association
Viewing Party at Molly and Mark Wiese's Home
Despite having to swivel to a 100% virtual format for our 4th annual Polo for Change event on Sunday, October 11, it is with immense gratitude that we’re happy to report that we were able to raise $340,000 in support of the formerly homeless women and children at Saint John’s! This is truly remarkable, and a feat we certainly would not have accomplished without the undying support of our amazing donor community. THANK YOU for your dedication and commitment to being a part of our Saint John’s family!

Live-streaming a virtual event was a new and foreign experience for us, as I’m sure it was for our attendees, and we couldn’t have been more proud of the result. Thanks to the creative genius of the Sacramento Contemporary Dance Theatre (SCDT) and Misfit, the 100% donated videos were emotionally-charged, beautifully presented and clearly showcased the mission and the message of Saint John’s. Special thanks also to the California Grocers Association for hosting our event in their conference room, and to Freddie Silveria of FSA Events and our own Julie Hirota, Saint John’s CEO, for entertaining us throughout the hour with their emceeing swagger!

It was an honor to present the 2020 Community Mother of the Year award to our longtime supporter and friend, Molly Wiese, and to feature our accomplished alumnae as part of this hour-long polo-themed celebration. Thanks to so many generous donations, we were able to offer more than 70 awesome auction items as well as a selection of exciting Golden Ticket prizes (congratulations to Golden Ticket winner Anne Sadler!).

Thank you to those who participated in our Fund-a-Need drive in support of our Distance Learning Program! With a $180,000 unexpected addition to our budget, on top of the financial implications we have already faced as a result of the pandemic, this support means to world to us. If you didn’t have a chance to participate in our event on the 11th, please be sure to watch the recorded event here. Although the silent and live auctions have closed, our fund-a-need will remain open until the end of the month.

On behalf of all of us at Saint John’s, but especially on behalf of the women and children we serve, thank you for being by our side, now and always. Your support provides help and hope to the up to 600 women and children we serve each year, allowing them to create real and lasting change in their lives.

THANK YOU to everyone who gave so generously to make this event happen. From the leadership of Saint John’s board of directors to all of the sponsors, donors, and volunteers, we are immensely grateful to ALL the AMAZING people who made this event a success! We couldn’t have done it without the incredible support of our community. Thank you!
Diane McLaughlin
Jacqueline Mietus

Katherine Bardis
Stephanie Barkett
Allison Barnett
Steve Chamberlain
Bernice Creager
Brenda Deary
Mark Demetre
Leslie Donald
Nancy Dyer
Jennifer Eason
Taryn Fischer
Karen Fisher
Jan Geremia
Jacob Gutierrez-Montoya
Kirsten Hayes
Aulaina Hansen
Kim Hiltachk
Cheryl Holben
MaryAlice Keaton
Wendy Klokkevold
Trish Kotal
Gina LaPlaca
Sam Mellor
Julie Mietus
Shayne Morris
Jamie Price
Kellie Randle
Anne Sadler
Scott Sadler
Molly Wiese
Larkmead Estate
Quinn Photo
Wirth Furniture
Sacramento B Street Theater
321 Design
Helwig Winery
Ruby Cakes
Grazing Craving
Fog Willow
Sacramento Zoo
The Popcorn Store
Dancing Coyote
Total Wine and More
AMT Jewelry
Laser & Skin
SUP California
Nugget Market
JK Ryan Salon
Del Paso Country Club
Radiant Yoga
Label Custom Clothing
Fischer Tile and Marble
Roach & Campbell Landscape Architecture
Casino Mine Ranch
Valley Hi Country Club
Fitness Rangers
Bueno Sport & Swim
Madam Butterfly
Sean Minor Wines
Kaiser Permanente
Tito’s Vodka
Reed’s Gourmet Meats
Bel Air
Miyagi’s Bar & Sushi
DJ Buzzardball
Julius Clothing
Brasserie Capitale
R. Douglas Custom Clothier
Silt Wine Company
V. Miller Meats
Fog Willow Pumpkin Patch
Seka Hills
Bella Bru
Faire Le Fete
Stephanie Barkett
Stephanie Lamour
Sue and Marc Cawdrey
Cindy Wilson
Jacqueline Mietus
Joe Ryan
Allison Barnett
Trent Moffett
Cameron Champ
Ann Sadler
Mark Demetre
Aulaina Hansen
Molly Wiese and Leslie Donald
Al Mietus and Jeff Law
Eva Nybo and Jill Humphrey
Michael Koewler
Urijah Faber
Samm Haden
Kelsey Burke
Lauren McHale
Michele Wong
Diane McLaughlin
Mendy and Kevin Peterson
Bernice and David Creager
Christine Alward
Allison Barnett
The Return of the One-Room School House

Saint John's Children's Program Director, Abra Ruthenbeck writes, "Growing up, I always knew I wanted to be a teacher. In fact, I dreamed about what it would be like to run a one-room school house, like on Little House on the Prairie. Little did I know that I would one day do just that, but in a very different way, in a very different time, and with very different students. With six weeks of distance learning under our belt here at Saint John’s, we are learning as we go." Click below to read more about our distance learning program.
Plates Café is Now Open!
Our Plates Café has re-opened and is serving Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Please check out some new additions to our menu, and join us for a true meal with a meaning you won’t want to miss! We are open for indoor dining, as well as patio seating! Check out our new here menu below, and we look forward to seeing everyone!
Let Plates Cater Your Thanksgiving Dinner!
Thanksgiving is coming and Plate’s wants to lighten your load by offering a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. For $20 per person you can enjoy a turkey breast or thigh, with mounds of garlic mashed potatoes and turkey gravy. Also included are all the essential feast favorites: old fashioned stuffing, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce, candied yams, garden salad and rolls. Order a meal for your family or send a meal as a gift to other family members or friends! You can place your order by calling Plates at 916-381-2233.
Coming Soon: RED DOOR Desserts!
Indulge and empower with a monthly dessert subscription to our RED DOOR Desserts. For just $30/month, enjoy a selection of desserts made from scratch using the freshest local and seasonal ingredients. More information about how to subscribe is coming soon!
Plates Café is part of the Employment Training Program for Saint John’s and 100% of the proceeds directly support our women and children.
Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!

Congratulations to Danielle S. on her new job as a Donor Outreach Coordinator for Vitalant, Nila E. on her new job as Donor Outreach Coordinator for Vitalant, Dana D. on her new job as Package Handler for FedEx, and Kristeen W. on her new job as a Donor Outreach coordinator for Vitalant.
Q3 - 2020 Grant Report

We are incredibly grateful to the following community partners who have awarded Saint John’s Program for Real Change a financial commitment to support the women and children of our program on their journeys to creating Real Change, especially during this financially challenging time! With much appreciation and gratitude, we thank you!

We REALLY need NEW vacuum cleaners. Please check the link below!

To make a monetary donation, please click HERE, or contact Bethany Knudsen, Development Officer, at

Today is a Perfect Day for a New Beginning

Together, we will give more women and children the opportunity to start a new life - a life filled with hope, joy and endless opportunities. With your gift today, you will provide a family at Saint John's not only a safe home, but also a hand up through an educational program that empowers mothers to provide for themselves and their families.

For more information, please contact

Saint John's Program for Real Change
Nonprofit, 501(c)(3)
Tax ID: 68-0132934
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