Our Goals United Way of Thurston County aims to increase the percentage of Thurston county students graduating from high school on time.
Our Strategies We fund Education programs that help children enter kindergarten ready to learn, help children and youth to be successful in school and help youth to graduate from high school on time. Our funded programs are helping prepare children to enter kindergarten ready to learn, providing after-school care, tutoring and mentoring so children are successful in school and graduate on time.
How You Can Help Last year our donors made it possible for 1,760 children to receive childcare and participate in kindergarten readiness programs and for 670 low-income children to receive tutoring and after-school care. Your donation to United Way of Thurston County’s Community Care fund helps us to continue funding these valuable programs. Please donate and help us continue this good work.
Investments in Education: $119,800 in 2012-14
Behavioral Health Resources: Children and Parents First Children and Parents First provides a safe, supportive, and nurturing environment in which all participants are encouraged to engage in positive and self-directed change. Volunteers and interns are utilized in this program to promote community involvement. Items addressed are: Confidentiality, boundary setting, role of the worker, safety, and mandated reporting, self-care, and program structure, typical families in the program, psycho-educational material utilized, innovative and expressive therapies.
Big Brothers Big Sisters: One-to-one Mentoring for At-Risk Youth Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest Washington exists to help children reach their potential. This is done through one-to-one relationships with mentors who have a measurable impact on youth. The One to One Mentoring program provides research-based and professionally-supervised mentoring for children and youth, ages 5-18. The program helps youth develop important assets, achieve early success and prevent negative behaviors. This sets them on a path of long term success as a contributing citizen. Childcare Action Council: Raising a Reader Raising a Reader is a research based early literacy program that fosters healthy brain development, parent-child bonding, and early literacy skills critical to school success. Literacy materials are distributed weekly throughout the year and programs are offered to support parents. Raising a Reader coordinators train early childhood teachers to show families strategies that lead to children entering school in love with the printed page and ready to learn. Community Youth Services: Parents as Teachers and Readiness to Learn Parents as Teachers is an evidence-based home visitation program serving families throughout pregnancy and until their child reaches age three. Participating families receive personal home visits. The visits include an introduction to "book cuddling" and information on child development. The program also offers ongoing health, vision, hearing, developmental, and social-emotional screenings. Participants are invited to join in Play & Learn Together group activities which are opportunities for parents to share information about parenting issues and child development.
Readiness to Learn is an early intervention program that promotes student success through the formation of school, community, and family partnerships. Its goal is to ensure that students and their families have access to resources and services necessary to help them attend school ready to learn, and achieve their highest learning potential. The Readiness to Learn program partners with AmeriCorps to provide member support to elementary school students and families in the Thurston County. Family Education & Support Services: Strengthening Families Family Education and Support Services collaborates with four Thurston County schools to offer a series of parenting classes called Strengthening Families. The goal is to ensure that parents and adults caring for children have the skills, resources, and supports necessary to help children succeed in school. All classes are free and in partnership with the schools. Each class includes a concurrent children’s program providing tutoring, literacy, and movement activities led by a trained children’s team.
Garden-Raised Bounty (GRuB): In the Schools Inititative Students who are struggling to engage and find success in the traditional school system earn core credits while learning about and contributing to local community food solutions. Grub’s innovative alternative school model brings low-income and disengaged youth to our small, urban farm for a hands-on learning experience that is unique to our community. Our holistic curriculum, which includes activities on sustainable agriculture, horticultural science and biology, and environmental stewardship, creates opportunities for urban youth to get their hands in the soil and learn how to take care of themselves and the earth simultaneously. Intercommunity Mercy Housing: Out of School Time Program Out of School Time provides school aged children with a rich and supportive after-school environment. The program fosters a love of learning and helps increase their long-term commitment to school. In addition to daily tutoring and homework help during the school year, the program offers a half-day summer program that includes reading and math practice, and a free lunch. The staff works closely with local schools to actively support children's educational success. ROOF: Kids Place After School & Summer Program Kid's Place After-School and Summer Program serves 50 low-income and at-risk children in K-5th grades referred by Rochester schools. The program boosts students’ academic levels and works to strengthen their social and leadership skills. Staff and two AmeriCorps members work daily with youth after school and throughout the summer. South Sound Reading Foundation: Literacy Outreach Programming Family Education Literacy Outreach educates and reminds children, youth, and families about the importance of daily reading with programming and materials. Efforts are coordinated with hospitals, doctor's offices, and other health care professionals to get books and important literacy information to families with young children and babies. Program staff collaborates with childcare providers, local businesses, families and local non-profits to promote literacy and provide a variety of supportive materials. The program provides thousands of free books annually into the homes and hands of children and families, so that they have the tools they need to read and succeed. TOGETHER! Evergreen Villages Neighborhood Center Evergreen Villages Neighborhood Center offers programs at no cost to the economically disadvantaged, at- risk children and youth who reside at Evergreen Villages complex. Activities for out-of-school time are provided in a safe, structured, and supervised environment. The center is open every day after school, and also during the summer, early release days, and vacation holidays. The program is designed to increase academic success, build non-violent resolution skills, and prevent tobacco, alcohol, and drug use. Homework help, tutoring, academic support, social skill building, and leadership activities support the success of participating children and youth.