Jessica Robblee’s story is one of perseverance and hope, despite the odds that were stacked against her.
Born in Eureka, California, Jessica had personal and family challenges early. She began using drugs at the age of 16, had her son when she was 18, and her daughter at 23, moving to Fort Bragg to raise her family. Although she was able to maintain sobriety for a few years, she eventually relapsed, and her partner at the time took her children away. For 10 years, Jessica found herself caught in a cycle of homelessness, substance abuse, and encounters with law enforcement.
BACS got connected to Jessica after she was arrested in 2017, with her case manager Brandy focusing on helping Jessica on her sobriety journey and locating safe housing.
Jessica herself acknowledges she was not always easy to help. “I have been around people who pushed me too much, but Brandy was super patient with me and did not push past what I could handle,” said Jessica. “I’m grateful to BACS and especially Brandy for sticking by me these past five years.” BACS kept working with Jessica and advocating for her to reach her goals.
There were things Jessica had to re-learn. Her first night in a transitional home, she wanted to sleep in the backyard, but Brandy gave her a weighted blanket and reassured her that it was safe to sleep indoors. She also had to reconsider her eating and nutrition, as so many foods in jail are unhealthy. But now, she is in a position to use her experience to help women like her.
Today, we are so proud and honored to share Jessica’s major achievement: she has purchased and opened her very own transitional sober living home, called “Product of Grace.” Jessica shared that her successes are a product of the grace extended to her by those around her during her years of challenges and recovery, and she wants to extend that grace to others. Product of Grace is located in Solano County.
Jessica’s own experiences have taught her that housing insecurity and incarceration can be accompanied by food insecurity and lack of basic life skills. In response, Product of Grace has a clothing closet for interview clothes, a coaching plan for job interviews, and a food pantry where she will be collecting donations. She also plans to teach women how to do basic housework and cook nutritious meals. She wants to provide a space where women can learn and grow, not only in terms of their sobriety but in their personal lives as well. Jessica is a trained facilitator in trauma-informed care, and offers a group to specifically support high-risk women through their trauma journey. For Jessica, family reunification is also an important aspect of her work. She had to regain her family’s trust after her challenges, and has reunited with her family, who are so proud of her.
It has been BACS’ honor and privilege to be part of Jessica’s amazing journey, and we wish her the deepest congratulations on her success.