Homes First Honoring Heroes at Their ‘Celebrations and Awards’ Event October 21

homes first celebrations and awards event Hel Dastvan
Hel Dastvan. Photo courtesy: Homes First

Submitted by Homes First

Be honest. With so much bad news filling our lives, couldn’t we all use a little more celebrating the good in our community right about now? Well, if you agree, please sign up to join Homes First either in-person or virtually for our Celebration and Awards, to be held at 5 p.m. October 21, 2021. The free event will be an opportunity to applaud all that Homes First has accomplished in the last year, providing safe and affordable rental homes to those who need them most.

During the program you will learn the results of September’s Heroes for Housing virtual fundraiser, enjoy some appetizers and beverages and honor the work of this year’s Real Community Heroes. Registration kicks off October 1 and is easily accessed with the Register Here button on our website at Whether you choose virtual or in person registration, you will receive a personalized email with event location and details.

Have you heard of these amazing heroes? Homes First honors the efforts of ALL the non-profits in the community who work or volunteer day in and day out to provide affordable housing and/or support services so people can stay in their homes. Each year, three Real Community Heroes select the next year’s honorees, people they believe embody the character of a hero of housing. It’s a program that perpetuates the hard work of those consistently thinking of others.

This year’s heroes are:

  • Tonya Hennen, CO-HO Team of Windermere Realty, selected by 2020 hero Amal Joury. Tonya works at the local and state level to advocate for affordable housing. She was a lead advocate for the 2021 Washington Low Income Housing Alliance’s outreach to legislators to ensure tenants avoided eviction when the rental housing moratorium was lifted.
  • Hel Dastvan, case manager at the Interfaith Works Overnight Shelter, selected by 2020 hero Kirsten York. Hel is integral to services offered at the shelter, and they also play a key role in the Vulnerability Index Racial Equity team in Thurston County.
  • John Terranova, a longtime volunteer in social ministry and community outreach through St. Michael’s Catholic Church, selected by 2020 hero Kathleen Bellefeuille-Rice. John, who also served on the Board of Directors of Interfaith Works, has been a longtime volunteer at the homeless shelter for men run by the church.


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