Primary program funding is very limited in scope, and doesn’t allow us the flexibility to meet all of the diverse needs of our children, youth and families. Because of the gap in funding this creates, we have established a Community Resources Development department that is dedicated to partnering with our community to ensure that everyone in our care has their individual needs met, and are given every opportunity and/or resource needed to overcome barriers to their success. Within our Community Resources Development department, we have two teams of staff who focus on reaching out and partnering with our community--the Community Engagement Team and the Resources Engagement Team.
- Create and expand linkage between our youth and families and the larger community
- Develop resources to meet needs which are not covered by primary funding sources
- Serve as a conduit for individuals and organizations to become positively involved in the lives of our local children, youth and families, and become advocates on their behalf
- Establish alternative revenue sources which will allow for us to expand and develop new programs and establish fiscal longevity without relying on public funding
The Community Engagement Team focuses on connecting individuals, businesses and/or organizations to our mission through different opportunities, such as:
- Interning provides students the opportunity to gain experience with high-needs children, youth and families, helping students gain valuable knowledge of the Human Service Industry while earning a wage and/or college credits.
- Mentoring allows community members to develop mentoring relationships with our youth who are in need of stable, caring adult role models in their lives.
- The team also recruits and supports volunteers from the community who wish to partner with us by being a tutor, education navigator, career mentor, or administrative or event volunteer.
The Family Care Network began recruiting Interns in 1990, and has had 597 since that time. Interns work directly with our youth and families, help support our staff and participate in our events.
An Intern's Story
Working at Family Care Network has been everything that I hoped it would be. I remember going through the long hiring process (and lots of paperwork), and being intimidated by everything that I had to do before I could even start. I was excited to start my internship because it offered me direct experience working with and around social workers, case managers and clients. Starting this internship alongside five other Cal Poly students was amazing, and the long training hours allowed us all to form friendships with each other. I was also pleasantly surprised to find out that my supervisors, Kelly and Lupita, were funny, approachable and very knowledgeable, and they were always available to help me.
We began recruiting mentors in 2001 and made our first client/mentor match on November 14, 2001. Since this time, our Mentor Program has been very successful as represented by the following:
- 341 mentors have been recruited and trained
- 300 matches have been made
- 227 have completed their mentorship commitment
- 17 are currently ongoing
Since our inception, we have relied heavily upon the compassion and generosity of our community. Without devoted volunteers—individuals, businesses and organizations—who give their time, resources and skills to help us care for our children, youth and families, we would not be able to achieve our mission.
Our Resources Engagement Team works with our community to increase awareness, advocacy and fundraising efforts on behalf of our community’s most vulnerable. We also partner with the community to provide goods and services for families and youth, as well as develop alternative sources of revenue for the agency through fundraising events, service-related enterprise, major giving, and endowment and planned giving opportunities so that we can expand and develop our programs and establish fiscal longevity.