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A newsletter of Napa Valley Community Foundation

June 2012

Napa County's nonprofit groups have a reputation for being collaborative, not only within the sector, but also across government agencies and even some for-profit entities, like nursing homes or banks.


This approach has spawned some of our Valley's most significant cross-sector countywide programs, including: the Healthy Aging Population Initiative (HAPI) that advocates on behalf of elderly community members and provides services like preventing injuries from falls; Family Economic Success/Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA), which offers savings and asset-building programs to help families move out of poverty; and, Bridges, which provides mental health screenings and therapeutic services to couples, families and elderly residents.


Collaboration isn't easy. It takes significant time and staff resources--especially in the first couple of years. In fact, unrestricted funds (which are the hardest dollars for nonprofits to acquire) can be key to an organization's ability to join collaborative efforts and then stay at the table over the long haul.


When collaboratives work, they can have big pay-offs for a community. Advocacy efforts can bring important issues to light; innovative programs can be piloted; and, more people can be served, sometimes at a lower cost.


Here are some characteristics of well-functioning collaboratives: 


  • Established ground-rules and written agreements for how partners will make decisions and work together
  • Senior leadership buy-in from each partner agency, paired with an understanding of how the collaborative will further each organization's mission
  • Clearly defined goals, including the willingness of partners to discuss an exit strategy if the group has completed its work, or if one or more parties decides to pull out beforehand. 


This issue of Community Link features a longstanding, countywide collaborative that works on the serious issue of child abuse prevention.  


If you'd like to support this or any other effort, please complete a donor recommendation form and fax it to us at 254.7955. Give us a call at 254.9565 if you have any questions. 


If you'd like to read past issues of the newsletter, go to http://www.napavalleycf.org/index.php?page_id=169.


Julia DeNatale and Marla Tofle

Philanthropic Services Staff


Supporting Families

Educating and empowering children to stay safe


Agency:  Cope Family Center

Support Needed:  $5,000

Purpose:  School-based child assault prevention program


In Napa Valley, nearly 1,200 cases of child abuse are reported each year, and more than 70 percent of incidents involve kids under the age of 11. The Child Abuse Prevention Council of Napa County (CAPC) is mandated by the State of California to coordinate agencies that provide child abuse prevention and treatment services in our community.  


Although CAPC is state-mandated, it is not a state entity. Instead, it is led by a Steering Committee comprised of 15 local nonprofit and government representatives; Cope Family Center, a nonprofit, provides program and administrative support for CAPC.


The collaborative runs child abuse prevention public awareness campaigns, and it also offers workshops on how to identify and report child abuse that are targeted to childcare providers and other professionals working with kids, including doctors, teachers and coaches.


One of CAPC's flagship offerings is the Child Abuse Prevention Program (CAPP), which teaches 2,000 elementary-age kids how to be safe, as well as how to recognize dangerous contact. CAPP's trained staff and volunteers deliver the hour-long, kid-friendly curriculum in the classroom, while the school teacher is present; the session includes discussions, skits and role-playing exercises about dealing with strangers and bullying.  


The goal: for young people to learn practical techniques to identify and avoid potentially harmful interactions, like how to differentiate between safe and unsafe touches, how/when to say "no," and who to tell if something happens.


CAPC partners say that this kind of prevention education, directed to kids, is most effective because children, their friends or a parent are most likely to report an incident of abuse. In fact, child abuse victims have divulged their previously unreported stories to CAPP trainers or classroom teachers.  


Another benefit of CAPP: Teachers learn to be watchdogs for abuse and bullying, and what steps to take.  


CAPP currently is offered on 10 campuses throughout the county; schools located in areas with the highest number of child abuse reports take priority.


CAPC's budget for CAPP is $40,000, and local birth certificate fee revenue, as well as voluntary donations that accompany property tax payments, cover the cost.  


However, decreases in both funding sources have left a $5,000 gap in this year's budget for CAPP. Your support would help kids learn how to be safe from harm.


Child Abuse Prevention Council of Napa County

1340 Fourth Street

Napa, CA 94559

707.252.1123 x 118

Contact: Molly Arnott, Program Manager

Email: Marnott@copefamilycenter.org


Contact the Community Foundation

email: julia@napavalleycf.org

web: http://www.napavalleycf.org