Equitable and Sustainable Early Childhood Systems

We believe in a family-centered approach that focuses on prevention and early interventions.

While our work supports all young children and their families in Santa Cruz County, we prioritize serving the most vulnerable among us including low-income families, English language learners, and families who live in communities with the highest need. First 5 Santa Cruz County has also played a central role in strengthening the early childhood system of care by:

  • Leveraging Prop 10 resources to create, strengthen, or fill gaps in service delivery systems

  • Supporting community initiatives, training, data sharing, community events, and capacity-building projects

  • Implementing and evaluating evidence-based and research-informed programs and practices

  • Facilitating collaboration among public, nonprofit, and private partners in order to connect siloed systems and services

  • Serving as the backbone for collective impact collaboratives, such as Quality Counts Santa Cruz County and Thrive by Three

  • Advocating for policies and budgets that prioritize early childhood

  • Convening partners to implement local solutions to systems and policy changes initiated at the local, state, and federal levels.


Over the last 20 years, these service integration and systems building functions have become a cornerstone of First 5 Santa Cruz County’s strategy to create sustainable impacts. Systems building as a sustainability strategy has become increasingly important as Prop 10 revenue has steadily declined due to reductions in tobacco use, as intended by the original legislation.

 

First 5 Santa Cruz County is proud to serve as conveners, leaders, and thought partners 
in the following community initiatives:

2020-21 First 5 Santa Cruz County Annual Evaluation Report

2020-21 First 5 Santa Cruz County Annual Evaluation Report

Executive Summary