HOME IS WHERE My Family Is

“Food is a huge part of our life,” says Nelson Obando of SOMA Family Apartments. He then describes the sweet and soft taste of Baho, his favorite Nicaraguan dish. 

His grandmother, Manuela Ruiz, is one of the few people in the family who can make Baho. The recipe requires patience. It takes three to four hours for the beef, yuca, cabbage, and plantains to boil and the flavors to come together. See the recipe for Baho.

Nelson has been living with his grandmother and aunt in SOMA for the last four years. He’s thankful to live in SOMA because it shortens his commute to San Francisco State University where he’s earning a degree in hospitality. He’s even more thankful that his home is affordable and that he can avoid the high cost of dorms and San Francisco rent.

“My friends call me a unicorn because it’s so rare to meet someone who was born and raised here still living in San Francisco,” Nelson adds. “It’s an honor to live here.”

Manuela, who has called the SOMA Family Apartments her home since the building opened in 2003, feels the same way. She loves her neighborhood and neighbors. Above all, she loves that her home can be the gathering place for her family.

“El hogar es donde está mi familia,” says Manuela.

Home is where her family is and why the holidays are so special. Her family lives all over the Bay. Having a home in a central spot near public transit makes it possible for everyone to visit.

This holiday season, Nelson and Manuela look forward to catching up with everyone, and of course, sharing a hearty meal together.

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