24 August 2021 | Newport, Oregon
01 February 2020 | Portland, Oregon
20 October 2019 | Portland, Oregon
02 October 2019 | Sandy Airport, Oregon
28 July 2019 | Portland, Oregon
04 November 2018 | Portland, Oregon
03 November 2018 | Portland, Oregon
30 October 2018 | Portland, Oregon
29 September 2018 | Portland, Oregon
15 September 2018 | Port Angeles, Washington
12 June 2018 | Portland, Oregon
02 June 2018 | Victoria, Canada
30 May 2018 | Ganges, Saltspring Island, Canada
27 May 2018 | Nanaimo, Canada

Charitable Contributions: Giving Money, Giving Time

01 February 2020 | Portland, Oregon
Brian Stipak
U.S. income tax law encourages charitable giving, since charitable contributions are deductible for taxpayers who itemize. For that reason, and for a desire to help worthy causes and those less fortunate, I have always made some monetary contributions to charities. Like many, when working I had monthly charitable payroll deductions taken from my salary. Recently, at an old age I have increased my charitable monetary giving.

But recently I have also tried giving some time, as well as money. To be sure, when younger I did give some of my time to charitable causes as a big brother for the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization, and as a volunteer for the Children's Cancer Association. But I had not donated time for a while until last year when I started helping some nights at a homeless shelter.

My activities at the homeless shelter included serving food, greeting the clients, cleaning up, and spending the night as potential support for the paid overnight supervisor (Lisa, my girlfriend, who was the person who got me involved in the shelter). Serving food and greeting the clients was the most fun, because everyone likes you when you are giving them food. I ate the food too; it was homemade and good. The overnight stays in the shelter were punctuated by some tense moments when yelling would break out and I had to be ready to help the supervisor.

Dealing with the clients I saw some things that I expected. This shelter is a "low-barrier" shelter, which means that it lets clients over-night in the shelter who have mental health problems and who are under the influence of drugs. Plus there are families with children and people with dogs. Not surprisingly, I had more contact than I had before in my life with people who were seriously mentally ill, people who were under the influence of drugs, and people who suffered from both mental illness and drug addiction.

But I did not expect to see as many clients (Maybe a third of the clients) who had no mental or drug problems but rather seemed to be there for bad-luck and circumstantial reasons. Some had lost their jobs. Some had gotten divorced and lost their homes. Some families had a family member working but did not have enough resources to rent a place to stay, so they had to sleep in their car or in the shelter.

Lucky for all of these clients, during the cold winter months the shelter gave them an option for a safe and warm place to stay at night.

Something else I did not expect was the high level of conversation of some of the clients. Some were obviously quite educated and thoughtful. I noted when one client used the word "narcissistic" in conversation, and when another used the word "hubris".

The shelter I have volunteered at, and also contributed money to, is part of Silverton Sheltering Services. Besides the overnight warming shelter, the services include a day center and the provision of services to help clients transition out of homelessness.
Vessel Name: Ubiquity
Vessel Make/Model: Pacific Seacraft 34 sailboat, 1987, hull #67
Hailing Port: Portland, Oregon
Crew: Brian Stipak, Leslie Sawyer, sometimes others
Captain Brian Stipak typically sails with one additional crew member aboard, most commonly Leslie Sawyer. Leslie is an experienced sailor, and she sailed on most of S/V Ubiquity's 2013 Vancouver Island circumnavigation and the 2015 Haida Gwaii cruise. [...]
Home Page: http://web.pdx.edu/~stipakb/Ubiquity-Cruising.html
Ubiquity's Photos - Main
Marina Los Cabos in San Jose del Cabo, Sailing west of Cabo Falso, Canal de Cerrlavo, Playa Bonanza, La Paz, loading S/V Ubiquity on freighter
88 Photos
Created 25 April 2018
Shows the “ghost town” of empty boulevards built by the government in Puerto Escondido, ashore on Isla San Juan, sailing south to La Paz, and several photos in La Paz, March 2018.
55 Photos
Created 23 March 2018
Santa Rosalia, Whale Watching, Isla Carmen including the Abandoned Salt Mine and Town at Salinas, March 2018
116 Photos
Created 20 March 2018
Midriff Islands, and the Bahia de Los Angeles area
48 Photos
Created 19 March 2018
Marina San Carlos, Marina Seca, Exploring the San Carlos Area, 2017, 2018
41 Photos
Created 19 February 2018
Cruising north in the Sea of Cortez from La Paz to Santa Rosalia. Then crossing the Sea to Bahia San Pedro, before arriving at Marina San Carlos, north of Guaymus, Sonora, Mexico. We hauled S/V Ubiquity at San Carlos for storage at the Marina Seca on-land storage facility for the summer.
119 Photos
Created 24 August 2017
Cruising in the La Paz area, Spring 2017. El Cardoncito, San Evaristo, Isle San Francisco, Playa Bonanza
94 Photos
Created 3 April 2017
34 Photos
Created 13 January 2017
13 Photos
Created 8 January 2017
October 7-9, 2016 get-together of friends in Cathlamet, Washinton. Photos show the kids in the group having fun.
6 Photos
Created 13 October 2016