Thursday, November 10, 2016

Community Events- November 2016

Exhibit "When Visions Become Paintings":
Location: Real Estate Studio
214 King Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Days: Mondays thru Saturdays until December 6th
Time: 10 AM - 6 PM, Daily

Susanne Frenzel and Faye Sullivan host this FREE fine art exhibit. This exhibit is a collection of the diverse, abstract, and representational work the two have creaed in the past year.

Location: John L. Dart Library
1067 King Street
Charleston, SC 29403
Days: Saturday, November 12th
Time: 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM

Take part in a free bicycle safety course and check out more than 20 interactive community exchibits for both parents and kids!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Success Stories: Paul and Louise

One of the greatest motivations at Origin SC are the stories of clients, who have gone through our programs, and found themselves in a better place than where they began. These are the stories of Paul and Louise, both clients from our Homelessness Prevention Department.


Paul Kulp, a client of the Housing Stability department, was experiencing homelessness with nowhere to go. He lived in Pennsylvania before returning to South Carolina where he eventually slept anywhere he could. This led to him staying with some people who took advantage of him. Origin stepped in and worked to get him into One80 Place, but he was unable to stay due to having personal issues with another resident at the shelter. We placed him in a hotel to prevent him from sleeping outdoors, then, we used the Emergency Solutions Grant to place him in his own apartment and gave him a few months of assistance to help him get on his feet. Paul has now been stably housed since August 2016 and is very happy with his place.


Louise McCray was one of the first people to be taken out of tent city by Origin SC. She experienced homelessness for several years with no income to support herself; she was the perfect candidate for Lease on Life, a program that provides permanent supportive housing to chronically homeless individuals. She has been stably housed since February 2016 and has been approved for her supplemental security income benefits so that she is now able to contribute towards her rent and utilities. She is very happy with her apartment, and she is doing extremely well since being housed. She is truly a success story!
Sponsor Louise, Paul, and others in the Housing Stability program this Fall! Donations made here will go directly to helping our clients this Holiday season! We will also be accepting gifts of unopened hygiene and home essential items for Paul and Louise. Please email Katie to coordinate.

You can also personally wish Paul and Louise a Happy Holidays by submitting your Holiday wishes for them via a 30-second video. Video submissions should be in .MP4 or .MOV file format and emailed to
Gabri-EL with the subject: “Holiday Wishes!”

Please complete this form prior to submitting videos. Submissions will be accepted until December 16th.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Fact or Fiction

Most veterans have received treatment from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. Fiction

According to its own estimates, the VA will only reach slightly more than 40% of America’s homeless veterans.

Veterans who are not homeless are living in stability. Fiction

About 1.5 million other veterans are considered at risk of homelessness due to poverty, lack of support networks, and dismal living conditions in overcrowded or substandard housing.

Homeless veterans tend to experience homelessness longer than their non-veteran peers. Fact

Veterans spend an average of nearly six years homeless, compared to four years reported among non-veterans.

Penny Pinchin' Cuisines

Cooking on a budget doesn’t have to be a chore. Check out these low cost recipes that the entire family will enjoy!

Juicy Whole Turkey


  • 16 lb. turkey, thawed, inside packets removed
  • 1 gallon buttermilk
  • 8 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons poultry seasoning
  • 1 table spoon black pepper
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 white onion, chopped
Inside Cavity:
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 apple
  • 1 orange
Seasoned Butter:
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • ½ teaspoon garlic flakes
  • ½ teaspoon paprika


  1. Combine the brine ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. Line a large bowl, pot or bucket with an oven roasting bag.
  3. Place the turkey into the bag and pour in the brine.
  4. Tie the bag, making sure all the air is out and the buttermilk brine is completely surrounding the turkey.
  5. Refrigerate overnight.
  6. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  7. Rinse the brine off completely.
  8. Dry the turkey with paper towels until completely dry.
  9. Combine the salt and pepper and rub inside of the turkey cavity.
  10. Stuff the cavity with an apple and orange.
  11. Combine all of the seasoned butter ingredients.
  12. Brush this butter mixture generously onto the turkey, until covered with butter. Reserve some of the butter if desired.
  13. Place turkey in a roasting pan, breast side up.
  14. Place on the lower rack in the oven and back uncovered for 3 hours and 45 minutes to 4 hours.
  15.  Cover with foil for the last 45 minutes (if you are content with the browning) and also remove the apple and orange at this point.
  16. Remove from oven when done.
  17. Let rest for 20 minutes.
  18. Enjoy!
Tips: Feel free to stuff the turkey with fresh herbs, onions, garlic, etc. Don't brine past 24 hours. Don't overcook. Use the thermometer and cooking guide. (Oven temperatures can vary.)

Homemade Cranberry Sauce


  • 12 oz. fresh cranberries
  • ¾ cup sugar (can add more or less)
  • ½ cup fresh orange juice (juice of 2-3 oranges)
  • ½ cup 100% pomegranate juice


  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, add cranberries, sugar, orange juice and pomegranate juice.
  2. Stir to dissolve sugar.
  3. Let simmer over medium heat until almost all of the cranberries have popped.
  4. Stir occasionally and continue until sauce has thickened and most of the liquid has evaporated.
  5. Pour into a serving dish.
  6. Sauce will thicken and set as it cools and gets better the next day.
  7. Serve.
Tips: Replace the pomegranate juice with cranberry or apple juice or water, if desired. This gets better as it sits so make it ahead. It will also thicken and set as it cools. Don’t skip the fresh orange juice. 

Meet the Staff: Elizabeth Wincenciak


My good friend (Kristin Bastian) worked here before I did, and when there was a position available that I was interested in, I applied and got it. I started out as a rep payee counselor and really enjoyed working with the clients; it was an eye opening experience that taught me a lot. 

What has surprised you the most about working at Origin SC?
I don’t think anything surprises me anymore. I have dealt with a lot of interesting scenarios over the past 4 years. I enjoy helping our clients through difficult situations and helping them towards success and stability. 

What is an experience that has really shaped who you are? 

I think a lot of the clients and families that I have helped have shaped me in some way. Everybody’s story is humbling, and it makes me realize that we all need to be grateful for the things that we have, even if we don’t have much. 

How has Origin SC helped you in your career development?

I kind of fell into my current position here at Origin SC in December 2013, and I think that it is the right fit for me. I enjoy what I do very much. Origin SC has always been very supportive of me, and I appreciate that. 

What is the one thing in this world you are most proud of?

I am very proud of all of the individuals that I have helped get into their own place or helped to stay in their own place. Everyone needs a little bit of help sometimes, and the fact that I played a role in helping these individuals is a great feeling. 

Beyond Combat: The Hidden Story Behind the Homeless Veteran

We know that homelessness among veterans is a pressing issue, but how are men and women going from successful positions in the armed forces to life on the streets back at home? Here are some of the root causes of why America’s Finest are unable to meet their basic needs upon leaving the service.

Mental Illness
Studies show that approximately half of all veterans suffer from some sort of mental illness. Many veterans are victims of chronic depression that may have begun before their time of service or may have worsened or developed from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Other mental illnesses that can result from PTSD include Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Anxiety Disorders, Social Phobia, and Schizophrenia. Often times, these illnesses are left untreated or the medications to combat them lead to further health issues and unwanted side effects.

Substance Abuse
Approximately two-thirds of veterans deal with substance abuse issues. Many of these individuals are also victims of mental illness. Often times, such tendencies began before a person’s time of service and was only temporarily resolved because of the military’s strict policies on drug and alcohol usage. Without the constant regulation on those habits, many veterans quickly slip back into their old ways or develop new bad habits as a way to cope with mental illness.

Employment Disadvantage
Though our military takes pride in its advanced training, many of the jobs and skills within the military are not transferable to civilian life. A soldier might have been the best machine gunner or tank pilot in his or her unit and received great acclamation for that accomplishment; however, there is little to no need for such positions in the everyday world. Some skills such as teamwork and strategic planning are transferable, but unfortunately they are not always recognized by employers as equal to civilian work experience. Effects of mental illness and substance abuse also complicate the ability of veterans to get or maintain employment.

Social Marginalization
Many veterans were marginal individuals before their time of service and had difficulties coping in normal social situations. Upon return, many simply fall back into their former status in society with minimal support from friends or family. Others were fine in the civilian world before, but have a difficult time readjusting. Much of this marginalization is a result from mental illnesses, substance abuse, and disadvantages in employment. During their service, veterans are surrounded by people who share similar experiences with them. Some find it difficult to relate to others and maintain relationships once they return home.

Limited Capacity of Assistance Organizations
Many organizations are committed to helping veterans, but there is not enough assistance capacity to reach all of the veterans who are in need. The VA can serve approximately 92,000 veterans a year—making a laudable dent. However, there is an estimated 500,000 veterans living on the street an any given time during the year. Another drawback is the fact that many veterans are hesitant to seek help. Many do not want to seek help with substance abuse issues because of the fear of criminal punishment. Others simply have been mentally conditioned to not seek help as it is a sign of weakness.

If you know a veteran who is struggling, encourage him or her to get help right away! Refer him to our Veterans Services Department by emailing Elizabeth Winceniak or calling 843-735-5512.

One Less Homeless Vet: Mission Accomplished

Here at Origin SC, we help hundreds of veterans each year who either need homes or need assistance in keeping the housing that they have. One of our most beloved stories from our One Less Homeless Vet program is “Don”. Don is 68 years old, and he served during the Vietnam War. He suffered from macular degeneration, a disease that causes an individual to gradually become blind. As he slowly lost his sight, he was not able to keep up with his neighborhood homeowner’s association obligations. Although Don was current on his monthly mortgage payments, he did not realize that his HOA dues had gone unpaid for nearly eight years.

Don’s HOA filed foreclosure with a remaining debt of $35,600 due to excessive fees, administrative costs, etc. At the foreclosure hearing, the judge was outraged with the excessive administrative and attorney fees, so he made the default equal to $5,000 for Don. Since the veteran lived in Charleston, Origin SC was able to provide a National Fair Housing Alliance (NFHA) grant of $5,000, and the foreclosure was dismissed. Upon attending an income verification session with Origin SC, it was determined that both the HOA dues and monthly mortgage payments were affordable for Don. Thanks to NFHA assistance, Don is able to keep up with his payments and stay in the home that he has loved for years.