Novato Youth Center Annual Campaign


Novato Youth Center Annual Campaign raised $4,405 on HandUp!

$4,405 raised of $10,000 Goal
44% Complete
45 Days Left
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About this Campaign

Dear Friend, Here at the Novato Youth Center (the “Center”), our work to inspire and prepare youth to succeed extends to the family members who provide the foundation for youth’s lives. We know when the family is strong, children are more likely to thrive. Through programs like our Developmental Playgroup, School- and Community-based Counseling, Child Development, Case Management and Promotores, we increase the ability of parents, guardians, grandparents and caregivers to not only support a young person’s development, but to elevate their own skills, emotional health, and prospects. Ana Ramos, one such mother who has benefitted from our programs, says, “Contributions that support the Center make a direct impact on families like mine.” We hope we can count on you to donate to the Center this year. The first $2,000 donated through HandUp will be matched by, which will double the impact of your giving!

Twelve years ago, Ana was a stay-at-home mother of four who was isolated and unable to afford early childhood education for her kids. She began participating in our free Developmental Playgroup and was immediately heartened by the opportunities it gave her and her children to socialize while building academic and socio-emotional skills. One out of three children in Marin does not attend pre-school, and without programs like Playgroup, they would receive no formal preparation to enter Kindergarten ready to learn. It is because of our generous supporters that the Center can provide these programs to youth and families in need.

Through Playgroup, Ana learned about and joined our Promotores Program, which helps Spanish-speaking residents connect to local resources and emotional support. Ana says, “I feel so happy when we help people, especially those who are new to Novato and are afraid to ask for help.” Also an advocacy and training program, the Promotores Program has helped build her leadership skills. She says, “I went from being shy to having the confidence I needed to speak up for myself and other people.” With that new confidence, Ana became president of the English-Language Acquisition Committee at her kids’ school. She also applied for and accepted employment at the Novato Youth Center where she currently works with our Head Cook to prepare 100,000 meals every year for kids in our Child Development classrooms. Recently, Ana also accepted other positions here, including serving as both a Driver, who transports our afterschool kids to and from schools, and the Playgroup Coordinator. She now runs the program that helped to chart her course to a better future! We hope we can count on your investment to sustain these critical programs.

As Ana’s work outside the home increased, she sought affordable childcare at the Center and was able to enroll her children. She says the services “really helped to keep me working so my husband and I could both support our family,” and in that, the Ramos’ are not alone. Two-thirds of those served in our Child Development Program are low-income working families, and 98% have indicated our accessible care helps them maintain their employment. This is especially crucial in this time of skyrocketing housing costs that compound Marin’s already high cost of living. Marin currently has the highest cost of childcare in the state, and childcare is the second highest cost in the family home next to housing.

With her children enrolled, Ana is again seeing how two generations of her family are directly benefitting. She says, “The Center has given the opportunity to my family to be better prepared people with more skills. I see the difference in how the teachers have helped my kids with homework, math, and study skills, and it’s not just Do your homework and that’s it. There’s also a lot of support for how to communicate and handle their challenges.”

When asked how she manages being a wife and mother to four along with an advancing career and demanding volunteer work, Ana again credits the Center. “One of our Promotores trainings taught us to separate the hats we wear so we can handle the stress and not feel overwhelmed. Oh, that has really helped me so much.”

We know that investing in youth and families benefits not just those receiving services, but the whole community. Preschool alone makes children more likely to start school ready, stay in school, and graduate, saving our local economy about $11,400 per child. Those attending afterschool programs are less likely to join gangs, get involved with alcohol and drugs, or drop out of school. Please consider making a generous gift today that will ensure youth and families have access to Novato Youth Center services in 2017 and the opportunity to succeed. Thank you for your support!

In gratitude,

Cheryl Paddack Novato Youth Center Executive Director

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Giving Levels

A $20 donation could cover one child's meals for seven days.

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A $60 donation could cover one child's meals for one month

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A $100 donation could cover ten hours of flexible drop-in care.

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A $400 donation could cover one month of Afterschool Care

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A $1350 donation could cover one month of fulltime Early Care & Education

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Any donation, however large or small, will make a difference in someone's life today.

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