“Child Development.” That was the agreed-upon referral goal at the April 13 meeting of Mission Promise Neighborhood partners. That means these partners actively sought such referrals this month.
There were 30 staff from 10 partners who met at Good Samaritan Family Resource Center that day. The aim is to foster a referral network – using Salesforce technology – with the ultimate goal of bettering families’ lives.
This work is being spearheaded by Mission Promise Neighborhood Program Coordinator Leticia Contreras (photo). She acts as a connector to bring together all service partners, reserves the venue, outlines the agenda based on her team’s input and facilitates the meeting, including the data exercise.
Contreras explains her role as follows: “I see my purpose as that of making sure that all partners are on the same page. It’s a streamlining process, with the ultimate goal of bettering Mission Promise Neighborhood families’ lives through collaboration.”
With regard to referrals, Contreras pulls data on a weekly basis to ascertain whether the goals set are being met. Since the meeting, the group has already referred 18 Mission Promise Neighborhood families to early childhood programs provided by organizations in the partnership. True impact.
One family’s impact
To educate community partners on the importance of the Salesforce referral network, Family Success Coach Celina Ramos-Castro, who is based at Cesar Chavez Elementary School, told the story of the bundled services accessed by one Mission Promise Neighborhood family (whose confidentiality will be protected by not giving their name).
Ramos-Castro presented the group data on referrals made by her and other service providers for this family, linking all of the programs successfully accessed across Mission organizations.
Mission Promise Neighborhood partners started working with this family in 2014. The family includes parents and two children, one a 7th-grader and one a 5th-grader.
One of the initial items to be addressed from switching the parents from Individual Taxpayer identification Numbers (ITINs) — used for undocumented workers to file taxes — to their new Social Security Number. The mother’s credit also needed to be rebuilt, which was done via one-on-one financial coaching.
Other services were soon accessed, ranging from mentoring to create a college-going culture in the home, job training, free tax preparation and learning tenants’ rights because of a pending no-fault eviction.
To better language skills, ESL classes were also taken by the parents, who were immigrants.
These comprehensive services, offered by various community nonprofits, have led to family economic success and student achievement. This two-generation approach is followed closely by the Mission Promise Neighborhood initiative as a way to build long-term community capital.
Also at April’s meeting, “Housing” was determined as the word of the month for May. The good news is that partner Causa Justa :: Just Cause, which specializes in tenants’ rights, has agreed for the month of May to accept more Mission Promise Neighborhood families having housing issues, with five referrals already having occurred.
Concludes Contreras, “It’s exciting to see the power of the Salesforce referral tool go from concept to action, leading to impact for our Mission Promise Neighborhood families. This is just the start!”
About Mission Promise Neighborhood
The Mission Promise Neighborhood is a citywide community partnership that was created to support kids and families living, working and attending school in the Mission District. It brings together schools, colleges, community organizations and community leaders to help kids graduate and families achieve financial stability.