Bay Area Children First (BACF) is a community non-profit organization that has provided 2,465 children and 987 families with crucial therapeutic services. We have offered free to low-cost counseling to uninsured and underserved families at four Berkeley elementary schools and five preschools. In addition to direct mental health counseling, BACF has provided free parenting classes to 329 parents on how to raise healthy, stable children in the face of economic and emotional calamity.
Helping Bay Area families has been the task of BACF since I formed the organization 17 years ago. We are hoping that you find it in your heart to contribute a donation, so that I and my staff can continue these services and build on our success. As a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, your donation is 100% tax deductible, and the feeling of helping even one child is precious.
Due to budget cuts, BACF has not received renewed grant support to offer the free counseling and parenting classes we have provided for over two years to low-income Berkeley children. Our continued services will rely almost solely on your generosity. For every $500 donation we receive, we can continue to support one child and his or her parents throughout the rest of the school year.
As an example of what we do, take the case of one eight year old boy. For confidentiality purposes, we’ll call him Mike. He attends public school in the East Bay. From the first day of school Mike was very disruptive in class, creating a problem for his teacher and fellow third graders. The administration was fed up and ready to expel him. The BACF counselor worked individually with Mike in the classroom, and contacted his parents to coordinate a series of meetings with them, the teachers and school administrators. The results following the wraparound services were dramatic. Mike is more comfortable and confident. He’s learning to cooperate with classmates and teachers and turning into a promising student.
I understand the harsh realities of today’s economy. But I believe that none of us can afford to turn our backs on the children most threatened by this reality. With your contribution to Bay Area Children First, we can create better prospects for children like Mike as he grows up. By giving now, you’ll help create a better future- not just for Mike, but for all of us.
Susan Regan, MFT