COPY-25th Annual Homes for the Holidays - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

COPY-25th Annual Homes for the Holidays

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It appears to be a quiet street in north Reno, but inside more than a dozen of the cottages, you will find a lot of hustle and bustle. What might surprise you is the folks spreading Christmas cheer don’t even live there! "When we found out that there was a Mom with five kids moving into the cottage,” shares Lauren Yurick. “That really ramped up everybody's commitment to make this really special for when they come in."

The woman to whom she’s referring is moving into the small home as part of the Step2 program.  It is a substance abuse treatment facility that tackles addition head-on by helping women not only recover from drugs and alcohol abuse, it also helps them live more independent lives with financial, parenting and life skills classes. The women first participate in an intensive, residential phase, and as they move through the program, women can be reunited with their children and move to the Lighthouse Campus – which looks more festive than usual this season. For the first time, the ‘Homes for the Holidays’ tour is happening on Step2’s campus to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the event. Businesses all over town volunteered to doll them up like Assured Partners Consulting, which brought a team of 15. Yurick, who owns the company, says, "I will tell you it was not difficult; our team is so generous and willing to donate their time and their resources."

The families get to keep it all the decorations and all the furniture that fills the home during their stay - which typically runs about a year. "It really gives them an opportunity to get back on their feet," explains Step2 CEO, Diaz Dixon. During their time in the cottages, Step2 helps with education and employment. It takes a village to get the women back into society as productive members. "100% of the donations and all the money raised for Step2 stays right here in our community.' As witnessed during the decorating parties in more than a dozen cottages, it’s a community overflowing with Christmas spirit and a generous gift to help. "It's so rewarding and very humbling to give back to women and children in this community."

The one-day tour is this Saturday, December 2nd from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Lighthouse Campus in north Reno. Tickets are $40 for adults and $20 for kids. For directions and more information, call (775) 787-9411. You can also purchase tickets online at www.step2reno.org.

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