Alliance for Children and Families

Alliance for Children and Families
Founded: 1998

To strengthen members' capacity to serve and advocate for children, families, and communities.

A healthy society and strong communities for all children and families.

The Alliance for Children and Families believes that the success of our collective future can only be envisioned and built through creative leadership. The Alliance is committed to being effective in increasing the capacity of its members. The organizations respects human dignity and is committed to fostering self worth, achievement, and equity for all. The Alliance works to strengthen unity of purpose, full participation, diversity, inclusivity, and collaboration.

The Alliance for Children and Families is a nonprofit membership association representing more than 360 child- and family-serving organizations that provide services to more than five million people each year in more than 2,000 communities. The organization's members provide an array of community-based programs and services to all generations.

Over the past two years, the Alliance has conducted important research on the experience of individuals affected by welfare reform. The result, Faces of Change (much of which is available online at the Allinace's Web site), offers first-hand accounts from over 100 current and former welfare recipients detailing their experience in six primary areas: child care, employment, health care, job training, public assistance, and transportation.

In addition to Faces of Change, the Alliance has produced policy statements on child welfare, violence, and juvenile justice, mental health and behavioral care, social service privatization, and welfare reauthorization.

Current Programs:
Families and Schools Together (FAST) is the Alliance's gold standard for program replication and the Alliance's most widely utilized initiative. The Alliance has trained more than 500 school-based FAST teams and extended the program into 34 states, the District of Columbia, and three Canadian provinces. The program has received more than $35 million in grants for local communities, and six unrelated agencies of the federal government have independently identified FAST as a program model that works. Community-Centered Initiatives (CCI) represents the Alliance for Children and Families' commitment to help its members create the vision, programs, and organizational/cultural development strategies that strengthen residents as resources for communities, and communities as resources for children and families. Initiated in January 1997, this national venture consists of four major initiatives:

— Community-Centered Program Development
— Community-Centered Leadership Development
— Organizational and Community Development
— Community-Centered Human Resources Development

The majority of members currently involved with CCI were invited to participate based on their demonstration of a community-centered program or activity, or their willingness to participate in a funded project they were eligible for geographically.

Recent Successes:
Ways to Work, an affiliate of the Alliance, was appropriated $3 billion for the 2000 and 2001 fiscal years under the Access to Jobs Grant in the Transportation Appropriations Act. Ways to Work is a family loan program that provides modest low-interest loans to low-income families for automobile purchases or repairs, mortgage or housing expenses, childcare, and other needs.

On November 20, 2000, President Clinton proclaimed November 19-25 as National Family Week. The Alliance, in partnership with the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation, created National Family Week to promote and support a healthy society and strong communities for all children and Families. The Alliance annually publishes a National Family Week (NFW) action kit. The kit, distributed to all Alliance members as a benefit of membership, includes information and resources to help develop and implement local NFW activities.

Web Site:
The Alliance Web site offers detailed information about the organization's programs, action alerts and a policy and advocacy section that's updated weekly, and a range of member services, including unlimited access to the resources of the Severson National Information Center, a member-to-member discussion board, and an online technology center.

Funding Needs:
Because the Alliance's budget is funded primarily by member dues, it is looking for foundation and corporate support to diversify its funding base. If you have any question or need additional information, you can e-mail etomlinson@alliance1, or call (202)223-3447, ext. 19.

Contact: Carmen Delgado Votaw, Senior Vice President, Public Policy
Phone: (800) 221-3726
Fax: (414) 359-1074

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