Kathleen Woodcock of San Rafael’s Marin Center for Independent Living wins a North Bay Business Journal Nonprofit Leadership Award
Professional background: Mortgage banking, retired in 1990 to raise our three children and help my brother who was rendered quadriplegic in a beach accident in Hawaii. I served on many nonprofit boards raising money for worthy causes that I believed in. In 2007 began consulting. 2008 started full time with MarinCIL
Education: Grad school – Golden Gate University, Undergrad – Dominican University
Number of staff: 15 – although four are part time
Describe your organization: The Marin Center for Independent Living, (MarinCIL) founded by a group of dedicated volunteers in 1979, has been serving older adults and individuals with disabilities in Marin for 41 years. MCIL’s mission is to assist older adults and people with all types of disabling conditions in achieving their maximum level of sustainable independence as contributing, responsible and equal participants in society.
Keeping people living in the community, in their homes, instead of being institutionalized, is the centerpiece of our efforts.
Our services and community resources provide a critical safety net to individuals living independently and to those regaining their independence after a severe illness, age related disability or life altering accident.
Marin has the highest aging population of all counties in California. Our older adults are aging into disabilities.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: I am born and raised in Marin; my husband and I raised our three children in Marin as well. I love our beautiful county.
In 1990, my family endured a life changing experience when my younger brother was rendered quadriplegic from a wave accident in Hawaii. It changed all of our lives and how we live our lives.
When my brother was finally discharged from rehab, The Marin Center for Independent Living was the only nonprofit organization that reached out to us. MarinCIL was very instrumental in guiding my family on how to bring home a new quadriplegic – they were amazing.
We had the financial resources to assist my brother, but we didn’t know how to assist him with his new needs.
Fast forward to 2007 when MarinCIL reached out to me to work with them in development. Best thing I ever did – I am able to pay forward the good work of MarinCIL and sing their praises from a unique perspective of having been a recipient of their skilled guidance.
What is your role in the organization?
I am the development director. Three of us make up the executive leadership team of MarinCIL. I raise the money for our amazing program and services
How has your organization been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?
Gosh in so many ways MarinCIL has been affected by COVID. The second week of March we pivoted to virtual offices and it is working very well, however, staff miss the one on one interaction with their clients.
We have had a huge surge in demand for our services. Six months into 2020, MarinCIL had already served the same number of clients that we served in total last year.
For 2020, we are on target to as least double the number of clients we served in 2019. As an essential business we have been very very busy; there is so much need for our safety net services.
What are the ways your organization responded to increased demands for services, and fiscally, in what has your organization been forced to adjust? Here are some of our accomplishments thru July 2020:
At the onset of COVID-19, The Marin Center for Independent Living was deemed an “essential business”. Over the past several months, the crisis has affected our loved ones, our community and our organization in countless and unimaginable ways.
Marin CIL has been at the forefront serving Marin’s most vulnerable older adults and people with disabilities so they can safely shelter in place with dignity.
Here is a glimpse of some of Marin CIL’s accomplishments.
• Assembled and delivered 2,292 PPE Packs to Marin Seniors in low income housing
• Deployed 130 caregivers to client’s homes
• Assembled a team of 12 ongoing caregivers to work in residential care facilities
• Coordinated delivery of 250 weekly hot meals and fresh groceries to community members
• Delivered 228 gift cards for essential needs totally $60,000
• Distributed 52 laptops and/or Chromebooks to deter social isolation
• Delivered over 200 high voltage batteries as life saving devices in preparation of Public Safety Power Shut Offs
• Facilitated 18 transitions from hospitals and/or skilled nursing facilities to home
• Distributed 6 wheelchairs, 4 shower benches and 7 walkers and 1 walking stick
• Installed 5 grab bars and 2 ramps for clients
• Purchased and delivered 2 air conditioners