Step Up Ventura provides children experiencing homelessness or at risk of
homelessness the opportunity to flourish by preparing them for kindergarten.
7/1/21 to 6/30/22
We are a nonprofit specializing in academic and therapeutic services for children five and under.
Step Up Ventura provides children experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness the opportunity to flourish by preparing them for kindergarten.
Help break the cycle of homelessness by preparing children for kindergarten readiness.
July 1, 2022
Dear friends and supporters,
As with much of the world, this past year was a period of transition for Step Up Ventura. Our focus remained on serving children and families at risk of or experiencing homelessness as we provided mental and behavioral services at our Easterseals location.
In May 2022, the Board of Directors adopted an updated mission statement along with an update of our website.
This year we initiated two programs - a pre-literacy reading program using volunteers to read in the classroom, and a teacher training program to broaden teacher's skills to benefit more children and extend our impact.
Being primarily supported by volunteers, we'd love to have you join us in this cause. We have a variety of opportunities from serving as a Board member to a classroom reader, or assisting in other ways that promote our mission.
Step Up Ventura appreciates your support this fiscal year and beyond.
Board President, Step Up Ventura
Served from July 2019 - July 2022
"We are committed to serving Ventura County's most vulnerable youth."
CHILDREN AND THEIR FAMILIES WERE SERVED!
The primary focus of program services was the direct contact with 86 children on site at theEasterseals Preschool and Child Development Center in east Ventura. The workers performing the services were the Program Director and Mental Health Specialist (two staff positions filled by one worker), two Masters in Social Work 2nd year interns from local university social work programs and a volunteer retired special education preschool autism specialist.
TEACHERS WERE TRAINED
The incentivized teacher training program had 17 Easterseals staff members receive certificates of completion for the 9-session, 14-hour Conscious Discipline and Trauma-Informed, Attachment-Based training program facilitated by the Program Director. On-going coaching
with the trained staff was done on an as-needed basis to increase the teacher’s ability to use the information covered in the trainings. Teacher coaching included 11 half-hour sessions for a total of 5.5 hours of coaching since the completion of training in May.
The volunteers and board members of Step Up Ventura poured their hearts and souls into our work. This unwavering commitment to our mission translates into enormous impact. Their dedication to providing essential mental health, academic support, and behavioral services to unhoused or at-risk of homelessness preschool-aged children was crucial and much appreciated.
Step Up Ventura is almost totally run by volunteers. Not only does that make us unique and strong, but we understand the importance of your time and we will make you feel like a valued part of our community. Please consider volunteering youre time. We are very much in need of your time and talent.
ONE-ON-ONE MENTAL AND BEHAVIORAL HEALTH SESSIONS PROVIDED
Services totaled 1,819 hours for the year. In addition, 20 children were referred for one-on-one weekly mental and behavioral health services, resulting in 443 individual sessions provided for the year. A total of 404 teacher and childcare provider consultations regarding the special
needs of the referred children were conducted to create a more supportive and effective classroom approach for all the children.
Eighteen food distributions of food donated by local farmers and community residents were made possible by volunteers picking up food at distribution sites and delivering it to Easterseals for families and classroom food support.
A special thank you to our outstanding volunteer, Kipp! Your ongoing dedication to Sep Up Ventura and the Food Distribution Program is genuinely appreciated.
Drawing by Kipp
The Pre-literacy Reading program had 26 potential volunteers take a 3-hour training in how to read to young children for maximum benefit. The trainings were led by 2 volunteer trainers who gave 6 training sessions since October 2021. Paperwork and state licensing requirements to be a classroom volunteer have created a barrier to many potential readers becoming volunteers. To date, 5 reading volunteers have given a total of 203 hours to 34 children identified as delayed in language and in greatest need for the one-on-one reading program.
Intermittent donations of toys, books, clothing and hygiene supplies were also made available to families 7 times in the year.
While the majority of funding is dedicated to our program team, Step Up Ventura hired administrative staff to create and develop standard operating procedures allowing our Program Director and Board Members to focus on their special areas of expertise. We also invested in a more automated and comprehensive fund development program.
Management & General
Total Program Services