Nonprofit Spotlight: Step2 works to help women in Nevada break the cycle of addiction
STEP2 is a local grassroots nonprofit organization that began in 1986 with the desire to help mothers with addiction. STEP2 operates with the determination to deliver coordinated services related to treatment, recovery, and family restoration. In its 30 year history STEP2 has served over 3,000 women and children. The stated mission of STEP2 is to provide the best services in order to help women and children break the cycle of addiction.
STEP2 pioneered gender-specific treatment for women in Nevada and currently provides state of the art care for pregnant and parenting women as well as their children. STEP2 uses evidence-based substance abuse treatment interventions combined with comprehensive services in order to provide a holistic approach to recovery, increased health, family stability, self-sufficiency, and improved quality of life. STEP2’s focus is on transitional housing, trauma informed care, domestic violence advocacy, intensive case management, parenting skills and development, nutrition education, employment readiness, subsidized childcare, couples and family therapy, and transportation assistance. The agency operates over half of the services in the entire state designed specifically for pregnant and parenting women, serving an average of 225 women and 300 children annually.
The STEP2 Campus consists of the Mathewson Family Counseling Center, the Transitional Cottages and the newly built Nell J. Redfield Residential Facility. This state of the art facility at STEP2 adds a 20-bed residential housing component to the Mathewson Family Counseling Center and existing Transitional Cottages. It’s designed to accommodate the everyday living needs of women and children in distress. The building is a nurturing residence that includes dorm rooms, a commercial kitchen and outdoor spaces that are conducive to a therapeutic environment. This expansion has enhanced the quality of services provided and further meets the demand of families in need. The Nell J. Redfield Foundation in partnership with an anonymous foundation graciously gave STEP2 a $1 million matching grant. Moving forward, every dollar given to this project will be matched by this generous foundation! There is currently $1.4 million left to raise to complete the campus integration dream.
STEP2 has grown immensely over the last 30 years, thanks in part to this wonderful community. Diaz Dixon, CEO of STEP2 shares, “Our efforts to break the cycle of addiction would not be possible without the hard work of the women in need, and the ongoing community support.” The growth of this essential programming has allowed STEP2 to treat many women over the years. The need in our community has continued to grow, which means that STEP2 must continue to grow as well.
The story of addiction is a powerful one, a past client of STEP2 shares, “I started using when I was 14 years old. I went through my life experiencing abuse and began masking my emotions with drugs and alcohol. My whole world depended on running to find my next high. Even after having my children, the only thing that really mattered was using. Throughout my 20’s and my early 30’s I went to eight residential rehab centers. Until STEP2, I never had a fighting chance. STEP2 is the most amazing place for women like me. They focus on helping to heal all of you, not just the addiction part. Currently I am receiving counseling for my history of abuse as well as my drug and alcohol dependency. They helped me find a job and thanks to the work I am doing with them, my five year old son is getting ready to move in with me. Without STEP2, none of this would be possible. Thank you STEP2 and this community for your help.”
STEP2 is fueled by donations, and there are many different ways to get involved. STEP2 is currently participating in Nevada’s Big Give with a fundraising goal of $5,000. Follow STEP2’s Facebook page or scan the QR code to the left to make a donation. The Annual STEP2 Golf Tournament hosted by Old Greenwood will be in Truckee on June 2nd. STEP2’s signature event, Homes for the Holidays is in its 25th year. Homes for the Holidays is the first weekend in December and always concludes a joyous year. For more information on fundraising events, volunteer opportunities, or to take a tour please contact Amelia Lane, marketing coordinator, at alane@STEP2Reno.org or 775-787-9411, ext. 206.
Names and small details in this article have been changed to protect confidentiality.
Heather Ashbridge, who started with Nevada State Development Corporation in 2008, previously served in several roles with the organization, including assistant vice president and loan officer. She is based in NSDC’s Reno office.