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Neli serves as the Co-Founder & President of A Safe Haven Foundation, a leading non for profit social business enterprise that is rebuilding lives and renewing communities with a holistic, sustainable, evidence-based approach including supportive housing, addiction treatment, education, job training/placement, and affordable housing. A Safe Haven Foundation has served over 40,000 people, since 1994, including families, veterans, and others, and now serves almost 4,000 each year. A Safe Haven Foundation’s model empowers individuals to transform their own lives and contribute to society; in this vein, Neli runs another social business enterprise that shines beauty inside and out through the world-class nail care line Be!® Products, which empowers women through meaningful employment and as proprietors of their own nail care businesses.
Her goal is to influence a ‘change in the paradigm’ on how our Nation addresses the issues of poverty, homelessness, drug and alcohol addiction with protocols that offer an effective, efficient delivery system by connecting services and leveraging investment resources of public and private entitities that have a shared responsibility and common goal of making a measurable and positive social impact to society. A Safe Haven delivery system is designed to help people in crisis achieve sustainable self-sufficiency to achieve the ‘double bottom line’ of saving money and more importantly saving lives long-term.
Today the A Safe Haven Model has over 22 locations throughout the Chicagoland area in Illinois and is successfully helping almost 4,000 people a year transition back to self-sufficiency.. The A Safe Haven model is scalable and is being considered for replication and franchising in other high need communities throughout the Country.
Neli is a frequent expert speaker, keynote speaker and panelist for many government, academic and business forums. Her story and the A Safe Haven model is the subject of dozens of local, national and international media stories featuring the topics of sustainable solutions for poverty, homelessness, veterans and reentry populations. She also serves as a expert speaker as a pioneer in the field of social business enterprise.