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Aug 24, 2015

Volunteer Spotlight - Gilda Powell

About once a month for the past 25 years, a familiar face has walked through our doors carrying bags of socks and sundries for homeless youth.

Gilda Powell first began collecting donations as a member of the Kiwanis Club of Portland (KCOP) and advisor for the Key Club at Grant High School, the Kiwanis sponsored service program for high school youth. Powell met Helen Bakkensen when Bakkensen opened a homeless youth shelter on Oak Street just a few blocks from where the KCOP meets every week. It became a perfect match for the Key Clubbers to help the homeless youth of Portland by collecting blankets, pillows, clothes, books, magazines and games that would suit other young teens.

Over the years Bakkensen’s youth shelter became a part of Janus Youth Programs – our Street Light and Porch Light shelters now named in her honor. When the shelter’s partnership with Key Club ended, the KCOP members continued to provide socks and hygiene products collected from their travels.

“It’s been my honor to chair and continue this project over the years. Once a month I collect donations from our very generous membership and use my discounts and coupons to help increase our purchase power,” explains Powell.

“KCOP and I have long been aware of the loving care your organization provides to the homeless youth of Portland. We encourage everyone to support Janus in every way possible. A sincere thanks to all the wonderful other donors, volunteers and marvelous staff members,” she said.

Thank you Ms. Powell for changing lives and building futures!



Jun 14, 2018
​Board of Directors Spotlight—Chad Paulson

Chad Paulson, General Counsel at Blount International and has been a member of the Janus Board of Directors since 2005, serving as Board President from 2011-2012. He has two children and when not running after his three-year old, enjoys playing golf.

May 30, 2018
Youth Spotlight—Kristin Sanchez

“Janus Youth changed my life in so many ways,” says 28 year-old, Kristin Sanchez. As a teen mom, struggling in a violent relationship and trying to find stable housing, Kristin came to Insights Teen Parent Program for support.

May 22, 2018
Eighth Grader Organizes Race For Janus Youth

When 14-year-old Bella told her mother she wanted to organize her own “Family Fun Run” to benefit Janus Youth Programs, her mom thought, “Why don’t you just run in a race instead?” But Bella had a vision and a strong drive to organize the event herself, which she did on May 20th at the Wilson High School track. Every detail of the event—from garnering donations for swag items, applying for a grant to help offset costs, organizing a bake sale, to publicity—Bella planned with support from family and friends. The event was a big success and raised close to $1,000 for Janus.

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