NOVEMBER 2023



GIFTING AN UPGRADE:  Larry Crepeaux, Executive Director

Yes, it’s Giving Tuesday, and we hope you will consider supporting our mission.

We need your support today and through the end of the year, as we raise funds to help with a specific and very needed project.

Website refresh and upgrade to include a robust provider search option and functionality to do surveys of parents and providers. 

These abilities will allow us to better serve our growing list of providers and families across Washington County and we hope to raise $3000 towards this effort.

Please consider this special request in your end-of-year giving and reach out if you have any questions or suggestions.

Sincerely, 

Larry Crepeaux
Executive Director
larry@washingtoncountykids.org

KATIE’S KORNER:  Katie Riley, President

I have a confession – I actually sometimes like plunging into data!

This month I got very involved in looking at county test scores for proficiency in English language arts and math for both 3rd graders and 8th graders.  The test scores tell a story about how well kids are doing before and after the pandemic.  It is not a pretty picture.  It shows that our kids were not doing well before the pandemic and they are doing worse afterwards, particularly for the kids who are economically disadvantaged – those who qualify for the Free and Reduced Lunch program.  If you would like to see the results of our data analysis, check out the presentation we gave at Washington County’s Vision Action Network Thrives meeting.  Although patterns differ across school districts, overall, it is like the canary in the coal mine—the results send a warning that we need to do something and do it quickly.

The lids in these groups are too old for early learning interventions.  However, research shows that if they receive afterschool and summer care, it can make a difference academically as well as in the rest of their lives.  They are more likely to graduate on time, attend college, and have positive careers.  They are also less likely to have problems with substance use and criminal behaviors.  Studies also show that positive outcomes from participation affect participants’ children and even grandchildren.

Unfortunately, there are many barriers to kids receiving this important support.  The largest barrier is cost—we have very little subsidized care in Washington County.  The burden is largely borne by parents and guardians.  For economically disadvantaged kids, that is an insurmountable barrier.

Some support is provided for preschool and early child care from state and federal funds, but we have very few subsidized programs for older kids except employment-related daycare (ERDC) for economically disadvantaged families for children up to the age of 13, or 17 for those with special needs.  Oregon’s Student Success Act (SSA) provides some support for school-age kids, but it is up to the school district to decide to use those funds for out of school time programs and the districts usually use them to pay for teachers and counselors.  Forest Grove and Hillsboro have used SSA funds for afterschool and summer, but they are still not enough.  The federal 21st Century program only serves 3 schools in Washington County.  Some providers provide limited subsidies.  The burden is thus largely placed upon parents to provide care when school is not in session.  And those who can afford to do so make the difference between the kids who are economically disadvantaged versus those who are not.

These kids are our future employees, our doctors, firemen, our citizens; and we are doing a poor job in preparing them.  They are not being prepared for the world.  It is to the benefit of employers and our entire community to work toward supporting them through their learning years.

Let’s work to provide sustainable funding for afterschool and summer programs that will support the kids who need it the most.  All kids can benefit from these programs, but we should at least be supporting care for those who can afford it the least.  If you wish to work with us to advocate for that change, let us know.

Katie Riley
Board President & Founder

katie@washingtoncountykids.org

PROVIDERS:  Resources & Connections

Afterschool &Summer Providers!
Please join Executive Director, Larry Crepeaux, for monthly Focus on Provider conversations. 
These informal, one-hour Zoom meetings are geared to facilitate discussions about what providers are facing and accomplishing.
We hope you can join these productive networking sessions.  If there is someone else in your organization who may find this relevant, please share this information!
Register here for Focus on Provider Events
Dec 22, 2023
2024:  Jan 26, 
Feb 23, Mar 22, May 31, Jun 28, Jul 26, Aug 30, Sep 27, Nov 22, Dec 20

PROVIDER SPOTLIGHT:  Ka ʻAha Lāhui O ʻOlekona Hawaiian Civic Club

Hawaiian Civic Club-a resource for Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander youth

Sophia Sakaino, a freshman at Southridge High School in Beaverton, is proud of her leadership role on the school’s youth council of the Hawaiian Civic Club (HCC), and she speaks with passion and enthusiasm about the positive impact of the club. Across Oregon and southwest Washington, Ka ʻAha Lāhui O ʻOlekona Hawaiian Civic Clubs is one of over 60 chapters of the Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs and Na Lei Makalapua (Continent Council of the AOHCC). They provide BIPOC students (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) an opportunity to meet and share their experiences and establish solidarity among communities of color.

Sophia is committed to the HCC because it “creates more youth leadership opportunities” and “shows that youth have a voice.” The organization gives middle and high school students a chance to socialize and exchange views and experiences with each other. The youth council is responsible for organizing events that edify, entertain, and promote dialogue on a variety of topics of concern to BIPOC youth. Some of the most meaningful programming this school year has been framed around social issues such as Black Lives Matter, March for Our Lives, vaccinations, and environmental protection. Unity expos focusing on cultural diversity have drawn participation from universities, colleges, and small businesses.

The Hawaiian Civic Club honors the traditions of  Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (NHPI) while having a lot of fun. Sophia is especially enthused about the hula classes and Talk Story, which is a Hawaiian expression that means “to chat informally.” Talk Story is an oral tradition of meandering personal stories mixed with mythology, genealogy, bedtime stories, songs, and whispers that have been passed through generations and that play an essential role in family and community life in NHPI cultures.

Sophia is pleased with the efforts of the youth council, and she and her peers are working to expand the reach of the club by establishing civic clubs in other area schools. One challenge for Southridge High’s Hawaiian Civic Club is to increase participation. Sophia says “To reach more youth we want to be more streamlined.” She thinks that the program can grow with more community involvement. When asked what her goals are for the Hawaiian Civic Club, Sophia responded, “To spread Maʻi magic.”

Leialoha Kaʻula, the executive director of KALOHCC, is proud of the accomplishments and enthusiasm of the youth council. She identifies that the major short-term and long-term goals for the organization are to establish and sustain a community center for the state of Oregon that serves the Native Hawaiian & Pacific Islander communities. In 2022 KALO opened what will be the stepping stone to their long-term vision, Aloha Resource and Community Center. “Establishing the center and what programs, services, resources, etc. it will provide will be guided by our community members, especially our youth. The community center looks to support the growing community and KALO values the manaʻo (voices) of our youth for they are the future leaders and the very ones who will carry on our legacy. The legacy of our founder, Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaʻole.”

Martha Rampton
KALOHCC.org (google.com)

PARENTS:  Resources & Connections

Parenting Workshops Available
Greater Oregon Behavioral Health, Inc. (GOHBI). GOHBI is offering two online workshops for parents of older kids:
Shopping with Children- FREE (0-12 yrs. old)
Wednesday, November 29th 12:00pm-1:00pm
Managing Misbehavior- FREE  (0-12 yrs. old)
Wednesday, December 13th 7:00pm-8:00pm
Parent Supports
Need support paying for child care? Check out how to qualify for programs here.
Dad’s groups
Dads of young children have groups to share their experiences.
Parenting classes:  Great classes are available for parents and caregivers of kids 10-14.
Health Coverage
Are you losing Oregon Health Plan coverage or need to update your eligibility?  Check out this information.
Your Kid and Substance Abuse
Do you think (or know) that your child is using substances that they shouldn’t be using?  A new article,  ‘Stepping in When your Child is Using Substances,” has some useful tips for parents and other caregivers to assess the situation and engage in helpful conversation to deter further use.  The Partnership to End Addiction has a step-by-step approach to answer questions and help you take action.  The article and other useful information are included in the
Resource section of our website.
Two new Resources for Parents/Guardians
We have added two new resources to the Washington County Kids website
Resource section for parents and guardians.  In the mental health section, an article from Harvard Graduate School of Education describes how parents can educate their teens about preventing negative thinking when they are on social media.  Another link in the substance use area, provides great information from Washington County on Opiods and Overdose Prevention.  In addition, there are lots of other helpful resources on our website!

!YOU MADE IT 

You made it to the end of the newsletter, and I thank you for your outstanding interest in Washington County Kids.  May I ask you for some feedback? 

>Do you have a favorite afterschool or summer provider you would like us to feature?
>Do you have any suggestions?  Please share.
>Would you like to get involved?  Please reach out.

larry@washingtoncountykids.org