The Common Good

Written by Kathy Bernstein

One afternoon in 2019, Tim handed a case manager a handwritten note. Tim was a resident in his fifties who had been living at the supportive property since 2014. Before moving to the site, Tim was homeless and lived in a very old motorhome. He had lived with depression since his early teens. On top of his mental illness, he was also diagnosed with Tourette’s Syndrome. This causes him to experience uncontrollable tics and vocal outbursts. The general public typically does not understand this, which often leads to unwarranted judgements and local police being summoned. When this would happen, Tim would isolate himself, which exacerbated his depression.

However, in 2014, Tim moved into Many Mansions. Living in supportive housing at Many Mansions, attending appointments at VCBH in Thousand Oaks, being an active participant at Path Point, and having a live-in aide helped him to mitigate these circumstances on a daily basis. This greatly improved his mental well-being. Over the last several years, case management had seen great growth in Tim, and a decrease in his tics. Overall, Tim appeared much calmer and happier.

While living at Many Mansions, Tim had been a very engaged resident, attending workshops and events on a regular basis. Tim was a wonderful neighbor to all. He shared his love of cooking and was instrumental in helping to create a stronger community by advocating for himself and his neighbors. On top of that, Tim is a very intelligent, well versed man that enjoys keeping up with politics, science, environmental concerns and enjoys hiking and being out in nature. Tim’s vast knowledge had helped so many of his neighbors over the years.

But in 2019, Tim handed his case manager a note. It read as follows:

I feel very lucky to have been chosen to live at Many Mansions. The staff was always friendly and helpful, going above and beyond in helping with nearly every aspect of life. I am moving on now, but I wouldn’t have made it without their help. It is indeed a great thing that Many Mansions does what it does, making for better lives for those in need, and, in general, contributing to the common good.

A very close family member of Tim’s recently passed away, leaving him the financial means to purchase a home. Tim located a home out of state that he wanted to purchase. He has successfully navigated the purchase process as well as all of the details of their impending move. During this time, he also got married. Tim and his wife are now moving on to a wonderful home in Oregon where they will have lots of wide open space for hiking, enjoying the rest of their lives.