I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Monica Kelly for more than 15 years. She and I got acquainted when we worked at the same company, in different departments. She helped me gather information on a regular basis. I got to know her gradually, and I realized she is someone who is really worth knowing. Maya Angelou said, “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Monica has a way of making people feel better, like they are capable of more, no matter where they are at right now. And she is capable of helping you figure out how to take responsibility for that. I always walked away from my interactions with her feeling at least a little more valuable than I did before. What a gift to the people around her! Monica and I have been on a journey together to make our lives more worthwhile. Our paths are very different, but Monica never expected me to do everything like her, she just seemed to always support me in being the healthiest, best me I could be. She accepted my help in boosting her when she needed it and she sure boosted me plenty of times. She is not shy about giving credit for her growth to God, but she’s not falsely humble either. It’s that she really believes in growth being a community effort, driven by God. No one person could do all this alone. I absolutely love seeing her work with Fresh Soil; it’s like her whole life was leading up to this. She’s been where you are and she’s done the work to get herself out. I am a witness. Monica keeps it real. It doesn’t matter if you have more or less than her – it’s never about that comparison. It’s about meeting a person where they are in life, no matter how messed up they think their mistakes are, no matter if they are different than her, or the same. She leaves the judgement to God and just listens, prays and helps. Nowhere do I see this more than in her efforts in Fresh Soil. San Diego needs this program, needs Monica, maybe as much as she needs all of us. Don’t be afraid to reach out to her, she will love you, even if you’re at a place where you don’t love yourself very much. If you are looking here, you probably are looking for a way out, or you’re looking to contribute to a worthwhile project. Contact Monica at Fresh Soil. You are worth her time and Fresh Soil is worth yours. Sincerely,