May We Introduce You?
Patrick Neilley is the Food Service Manager at Dorothy Day House. Joining us in December 2020, Patrick has been working in the restaurant industry for nearly ten years. He transitioned from restaurants to direct services after previously working for a job training organization centered on food service work.
After he decided to continue down the path of direct services, a friend referred Patrick to Dorothy Day House.
“Through my previous position, I could see firsthand that something as simple as treating people like human beings helps empower people to get back on their feet,” said Patrick, “Dorothy Day House was a natural next step for me–to come here and come to be on the beginning side of it, through our outreach work.”
“I’d volunteered previously in high school and college,” he continued, “But it was mainly with animal shelters. My first authentic experience with the homeless came about when I moved to the Bay Area.”
“I noticed that sometimes there is an attitude of ‘us’ and ‘them’–and being able to work with an organization like Dorothy Day House has allowed me to not only directly help people, but to get to know the people we help,” he continued, “There is a stereotype that homeless individuals have done this to themselves, but in the vast majority of cases, they end up in these situations through no fault of their own.”
When he is not working to make sure our guests have a hot nutritious meal three times a day, Patrick is usually hiking, camping, and riding his bike.