The San Antonio Clubhouse – Building Valuable Life Skills

San Antonio Clubhouse pic
San Antonio Clubhouse
Image: saclubhouse.org

Former USAA executive Dawn Johnson is active in a wide range of charitable pursuits, and particularly enjoys supporting patient health organizations both in and outside of her San Antonio home. Dawn Johnson is a member of the San Antonio Clubhouse board of directors.

The San Antonio Clubhouse works to support men and women who live with mental illnesses. It provides valuable resources to people as they recover, allowing them to build relationships with other members and Clubhouse staff as they prepare to re-enter the workforce.

The Culinary and Dining Unit at the Clubhouse allows members to become familiar with food preparation best-practices and to cultivate healthy eating habits. Culinary and Dining Unit members help create restaurant-quality meals for their fellow members, handling everything from planning to cleanup.

Participants in this program help develop a monthly menu, including shopping for ingredients. They raise the fresh vegetables and herbs used in the kitchen on-site in raised gardening beds.

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Units of the San Antonio Clubhouse

San Antonio Clubhouse pic
San Antonio Clubhouse
Image: saclubhouse.org

Based in San Antonio, former USAA Executive Council member Dawn Johnson now serves as an independent marketing consultant. In addition to her work in marketing, Dawn Johnson supports local nonprofits, including the San Antonio Clubhouse.

The San Antonio Clubhouse is a charitable organization that aids in the recovery of individuals with mental illness. To help members achieve recovery, the clubhouse maintains the following units:

1. Business Unit: Clubhouse members who participate in the Business Unit can learn valuable workplace skills, use computers to apply for jobs or housing, and connect with vocational rehabilitation programs.

2. Community Connections Unit: The Community Connections Unit conducts outreach programs to spread the word about the clubhouse’s work and keeps existing members informed about the organization’s events and new resources.

3. Culinary Unit: In the Culinary Unit, members work alongside cooking professionals to learn about healthy eating habits. They also contribute to the maintenance of the clubhouse vegetable and fruit garden.

4. Development Unit: Members who work with the Development Unit are responsible for helping the clubhouse raise funds, plan events, and conduct grant research.

5. Wellness Unit: The wellness unit provides members with a place to focus on health through participation in and planning of physical activities, as well as the management of the clubhouse’s snack bar.

The San Antonio Clubhouse – Helping Members Gain Independence

Currently the chief executive officer of the San Antonio-based executive-level business strategy firm DMJ Consulting, Dawn Johnson was previously with USAA Marketing. Involved in a number of charitable activities in and around the city, Dawn Johnson is a board member of the San Antonio Clubhouse and the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Accredited by Clubhouse International, the San Antonio Clubhouse was founded in 2003 to serve as a supportive community for men and women diagnosed with mental illnesses. Through the community environment and the organization’s programs, members safely find independence, health, and wellness.

A key component of the San Antonio Clubhouse, the Center for Housing, Employment, and Education (CHEE) is both a resource for members seeking its services and a place of employment. Not only do members manage the inventory and the reception area, but they also clean the building, water plants, and collect clubhouse statistics. For job seekers, CHEE provides help in achieving employment goals.

Most members go through a three-step process to obtain independent employment. Beginning with highly structured transitional employment, members graduate to supported employment, which involves a more traditional interview and hiring process and less input from clubhouse staff. Independent employment may still involve clubhouse input, but members at that stage largely go through the process on their own.

About the San Antonio Clubhouse

Dawn Johnson, a former senior-level professional with USAA, shares her time with several charitable organizations in San Antonio. Dawn Johnson currently sits on the board of the San Antonio Clubhouse.

Dedicated to supporting the recovery of individuals with mental illness, the San Antonio Clubhouse focuses on building relationships. It operates as an outgrowth of the broader Clubhouse movement, which began in 1948 when former patients of Rockland State Hospital in New York came together to offer support as they worked toward re-entering society. Their small meeting has since led to the founding of 300 Clubhouses worldwide.

At the San Antonio Clubhouse, members collaborate with one another and with dedicated staff to create opportunities. Members engage in jobs ranging from cleaning and organizing the building and its grounds to collecting data about the organization’s programs. Members receive access to a variety of support programs, including a three-tier employment initiative that begins with supported part-time work and ideally ends with the member re-entering the competitive workforce. Each member can also take advantage of on-site San Antonio Clubhouse initiatives, such as breakfast and lunch programs and fitness center activities.