Integrated Family Support Initiative
With the mission and guiding principles in mind, First 5 Yolo, during 2007, conducted comprehensive research as part of a countywide community needs assessment. The purpose of the research was to identify the needs of the approximately 15,000 children ages 0-5 in Yolo County and their families and ascertain the existing gaps between needs and available services.
When reviewing the 2007 Needs Assessment, the Commission looked for themes that identified areas where First 5 Yolo might make an impact by funding programs and services to address those needs. Based on the results of the Community Needs Assessment, First 5 Yolo developed a vision titled the Integrated Family Support Initiative to drive its funding for programs and services from 2008 to 2015.
The Integrated Family Support Initiative (IFSI) was founded on the following set of beliefs:
- Every family needs and deserves support and access to resources;
- Building upon family assets is essential to build self-sufficciency;
- Strengthening communities enables families to benefit from belonging;
- Success is dependent on families being solid partners at the table with access to information and resournces; and
- Activities and services must be provided in a way that best meets family needs.
IFSI's goal is to work with families to improve child outcomes by using resiliency and strength-based models of intervention that believe in a partnership between family and professionals and focuses on participants as resources to the program and community.
Under the Integrated Family Support Initiative, First 5 Yolo has identified four priority areas and six desired outcomes that agencies requesting funding should address:
In 2012, as a result of Assembly Bill 99 being overturned, First 5 Yolo had funding available to address emerging priority areas. A new Community Needs Assessment was conducted to guide the Commission on how to best address gaps in services as well as determine programs that should be enhanced to better serve children and families.
As a result, the Expanded Family Resource Center strategy was launched in fiscal year 2012-13 as part of an Enhanced Integrated Family Support Initiative.