Southern California Program

Grant Abstracts 2012

Alliance for College Ready Public Schools

Los Angeles, CA
$250,000
December 2012

In August 2012, the Alliance for College Ready Public Schools opened a new blended learning high school in Lincoln Heights, the Susan and Eric Smidt Technology High School (Smidt Tech). This is the Alliance’s fourth BLAST (Blended Learning for Alliance School Transformation) high school that integrates digital learning tools with traditional teaching methods to deliver a personalized, college preparatory curriculum. At Smidt Tech each student will receive a laptop computer and rotate through three learning stations within the classroom with small groups of 12 to 16 students during two hour blocks for core academic subjects (math, English language arts, science, social sciences). The learning stations include 1) teacher-led instruction, 2) individualized, interactive online instruction with content that adapts to and accelerates each student’s level of proficiency, and 3) structured, collaborative standards-based projects using technology. The school currently enrolls 150 ninth graders and will add one grade annually until a full enrollment of 600 students is achieved in the 2015-16 school year.

Direct Relief International

Santa Barbara, CA
$100,000
December 2012

Direct Relief will increase access to healthcare through the expansion of its Replenishment Program. The program focuses on high concentrations of uninsured patients cared for at community clinics and health centers and complements existing traditional patient assistance programs (PAPs) through which individual pharmaceutical companies provide free or discounted prescription medicine to low-income patients. Direct Relief’s Replenishment Program provides a scalable platform through which multiple companies participate, maximizing efficiencies in providing donated medicines to patients and enabling clinics to streamline their administrative processes spent on PAP enrollment and dispensing. Over the one-year grant period, the program’s reach in Los Angeles County will expand from five to six clinics, more than double the number of uninsured patients receiving donated medications to 4,500 and increase the number and type of prescriptions dispensed from 12,000 to 26,000.

First Place for Youth

Oakland, CA
$200,000
December 2012

The mission of First Place for Youth is to help foster youth build the skills they need to make a successful transition to self-sufficiency and responsible adulthood. Founded in San Francisco in 1998, the organization expanded its "transition in place" housing model from the Bay Area to Los Angeles in 2010. This two-year project will increase the number of Los Angeles youth who receive access to safe, affordable and permanent housing, education and employment supports services from 80 to 250 and provide training and technical assistance to three community providers—Hillsides, Covenant House, and Bridges—to replicate the First Place housing model.

Inner City Law Center

Los Angeles, CA
$150,000
December 2012

Inner City Law Center (ICLC) is expanding its Homeless Veterans Project in response to the growing number of homeless veterans in Los Angeles, many of whom are women. The project conducts monthly legal clinics at five homeless shelters – two of which exclusively serve women veterans. Veterans receive assessments and legal services to resolve a range of issues that pose barriers to obtaining permanent housing, receiving needed health and mental health care, increasing income, and reuniting with their families. Over the next two years, ICLC will serve more than 500 homeless veterans, at least 40% of whom will be women.

Lamp Community

Los Angeles, CA
$150,000
December 2012

According to the 2011 Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority’s homeless count, there are an estimated 11,571 homeless individuals in downtown Los Angeles sleeping in shelters, missions and on the streets nightly. More than 50% live with mental illness, physical disabilities or chronic health conditions. The goal of the Downtown Pathway Home initiative is to end chronic homelessness in Skid Row by housing 450 of the most vulnerable homeless individuals by July 2013 and a total of 1,531 individuals by July 2015. To achieve this goal, LAMP Community is working with other Skid Row homeless services providers to reduce duplication, link the most vulnerable to immediate services and increase permanent housing placements.

Level Playing Field Institute

Oakland, CA
$200,000
December 2012

The Summer Math and Science Honors Academy (SMASH) is a rigorous three-year enrichment program for high-potential, low-income, high school students of color to excel in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The centerpiece of SMASH is a five-week residential program each summer. Since SMASH’s inception in 2004 at UC Berkeley, nearly 100% of the 176 alumni have graduated from high school and 88% are currently enrolled as full-time students in a four-year university. In 2011, Level Playing Field Institute expanded SMASH to Stanford University and in 2012, it launched the program at USC and UCLA. SMASH will expand over the next two years, growing from 30 scholars at each campus in 2012 to 90 scholars at each campus by 2014. Through the Teachers as Leaders Academy, SMASH instructors return to their high school classrooms equipped to deliver an inquiry-based math and science curriculum to those who would not otherwise have access to a program like SMASH.

New Teacher Center

Santa Cruz, CA
$200,000
December 2012

It is well established that teachers are the most important school-based determinant of student learning. New Teacher Center’s (NTC) induction model utilizes carefully selected and trained mentors, chosen from among the “best of the best” teachers in the district, to provide intensive instructional support to beginning teachers throughout their first two years in the classroom. Low-income students of color and linguistic minorities have the most to gain from a high-quality new teacher induction program. In December 2011, NTC won a multi-year contract to train 20 teacher mentors who are coaching 150 beginning teachers in the Los Angeles Unified School District’s (LAUSD) Educational Service Center (ESC) South. In preparation for expanding into additional ESCs to serve a total of 450 beginning teachers, NTC proposes to hire a local Los Angeles Director to oversee program quality, develop ties with the district’s stakeholders and funders, and provide the daily interface with LAUSD administrators, mentors, and teachers.

Pueblo Nuevo Development

Los Angeles, CA
$200,000
December 2012

The Jane B. Eisner School capital project will create a new middle school campus serving 270 students in grades 6 through 8 through the adaptive reuse of an historic building in the Byzantine-Latino Quarter neighborhood of Los Angeles (located west of Pico-Union). Development of this school will enable Camino Nuevo Charter Academy to implement a critical component of its strategic plan which was adopted by the Board of Directors in January 2012. Among other things, the strategic plan calls for Camino Nuevo to complete two K-12 strands of schools (total of 7 campuses) that will serve about 3,800 students in central Los Angeles. The Jane B. Eisner School will serve the students who graduate from an adjacent K-5 elementary school operated by Camino Nuevo and will also provide community youth services in the afternoon and on weekends.

Southern California Public Radio

Los Angeles, CA
$1,000,000 – Special Grant
December 2012

The overall goal of the Multiplatform Newsroom Initiative is for Southern California Public Radio (SCPR) to become the region’s premier source of local news. The initiative will create a new model for public service journalism by launching13 full-fledged reporting units on key topic areas, such as Science, Research and Engineering; Public Education; Health Care; and Governance and Civic Engagement. Content will be distributed through multiple platforms-- on air, online, mobile apps, social media and live events. Broadcast listeners and unique website users will each increase to an average of over 950,000 per month by 2015. Building SCPR’s digital infrastructure is a core component of the initiative and is the focus of the project supported by the W. M. Keck Foundation. As a result of the initiative, residents will have a go-to source of balanced reporting, analysis, and face-to-face discussion on topics critical to the region. It will enable diverse communities to become part of critical discussions, and ensure that they are more engaged and working together to build a stronger and more vibrant Los Angeles.

St. John's Well Child and Family Center

Los Angeles, CA
$250,000
December 2012

St. John’s Well Child and Family Center is the fiscal lead for the South Los Angeles Child Welfare Initiative, a collaborative project among seven agencies to improve developmental outcomes for young children in two South Los Angeles neighborhoods and to reduce the risk of their involvement with the foster care system. In addition to St. John’s, these agencies are: Alliance for Children’s Rights, Beyond Shelter, Children’s Institute, Inc., Community Coalition, Institute for Maximum Human Potential, and Para Los Niños. Together, they are developing, testing and refining an integrated early childhood system of care targeting children at intake who are born to teenage parents or living with relative caregivers and demonstrate one or more significant risk factors. A minimum of 100 families will be served in the pilot phase. The redesigned system will be cross-disciplinary (health/mental health, early childhood education, housing, social services and community engagement) and better coordinated to help families remain intact and support the healthy development of their children. Since the Initiative began, the partners have developed a common standard of care, agreed upon short and long-term indicators to measure success and have begun to implement changes in their client intake and referral processes. In preparation for sustaining the initiative, the collaborative proposes hiring a full-time project director to oversee implementation, provide technical assistance to the cross agency teams, and document progress.

UMMA Community Clinic

Los Angeles, CA
$250,000
December 2012

University Muslim Medical Association (UMMA) Community Clinic is a federally qualified health center and the medical home to approximately 3,900 South Los Angeles residents who would otherwise not have access to health care. In the coming year, UMMA and its partners (the Los Angeles Unified School District and the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust) will establish a health center on the campus of John C. Fremont High School, located in one of the most medically underserved communities in the County. The project, known as the Fremont High School Community Garden and Wellness Center, will incorporate a comprehensive school-based health clinic and a one-acre community garden. Together, the health clinic and garden will work to holistically improve health outcomes among students at this critically underserved school, and among residents of its surrounding community. UMMA expects to serve nearly 4,000 patients by 2015 with grant funding allocated toward staffing and equipment at the new health clinic.

Advancement Project

Los Angeles, CA
$250,000 – 1 year
June 2012

Advancement Project is partnering with academic researchers, the Los Angeles County Probation Department, the Children’s Defense Fund, and other stakeholders to examine the experiences of youth before, during and after their time in the probation system and the extent to which probation involved youth and their families also have contact with additional government agencies. The aim is to better understand the experience of children who become involved in Los Angeles’ juvenile justice system and identify needed improvements to data collection and tracking, as well as opportunities for prevention, early intervention and rehabilitation. Data collection will occur in 2012 and the study is projected to be completed by December 2013. From the results of the study, a network of stakeholders convened by the Advancement Project, with the support of Children’s Defense Fund, will jointly develop a list of specific outcomes that will guide Probation’s practices to improve and streamline its internal service delivery, coordination with other County departments, and transition of youth back to the community. A final report with recommendations on a set of outcomes will be issued.

Chrysalis Center

Santa Monica, CA
$200,000 – capital
June 2012

Each year, across all of its sites, Chrysalis provides extensive employment resources including case management, job-readiness training, transitional employment opportunities, and job retention services, to over 3,500 homeless and low-income individuals with a desire to find work and improve their lives. The downtown center on Skid Row, which provides services to 300-400 clients each day, is significantly over capacity. The project will expand and renovate the downtown facility, nearly doubling program space. Chrysalis has negotiated a long term lease for the storefront between its current program site and administrative and transitional jobs program offices. Construction will be completed by August 2012. One contiguous space will be created to include a computer lab, an additional classroom, offices, and an expanded lobby. At least 2,750 people will participate in Chrysalis’ job readiness and employment programs and clients will improve their computer and customer services skills.

College Bound - Dollars for Achievers

Cerritos, CA
$150,000 – 2 years
June 2012

In this era of rapid technological advancement, inadequate preparation and a lack of interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), particularly among underrepresented groups, is resulting in a dearth of knowledge and skills required to drive innovation and strengthen our global competitiveness. However, the pool of qualified college applicants with interest and experience in STEM is insufficient. To address this issue, College Bound provides supplemental, out-of-school activities for students in grades 4-12 to prepare them for college, while engaging students in STEM subjects. College Bound will enhance its Saturday School, project-based curriculum for 7th grade (Renewable Energy Systems) and 8th grade (Communications Technology) to increase students’ interest in STEM subjects and their proficiency in algebra. College Bound employs credentialed teachers with subject-matter expertise; engages African-American males who are particularly disengaged from the educational process; requires parent involvement; assesses students’ progress over time; and provides academic and college advising. During the two-year project, 240 students and over 300 parents will be served.

East Valley Community Health Center, Inc.

West Covina, CA
$250,000 – capital
June 2012

To expand access to primary care for low-income and uninsured patients, East Valley plans to renovate a 24,000-square-foot facility for which it has secured a long-term lease to replace its current 9,300-square-foot Pomona clinic. Construction will begin in fall 2012 and the new clinic will open in July 2013. The number of individuals receiving comprehensive health and mental health services will increase by over 5,000 to 12,800 within the first two years of operation.

Enterprise Community Partners

Los Angeles, CA
$200,000 – 2 years
June 2012

Los Angeles leads the nation in homelessness. As an affordable housing intermediary with a commitment to permanent supportive housing (PSH) in Los Angeles, and as a United Way/LA Chamber of Commerce Home for Good signatory, Enterprise will work to develop and provide affordable housing solutions for those struggling with and emerging from homelessness. As a provider of the capital and tools needed to create affordable housing, Enterprise will build the capacity of (l) traditional affordable housing developers not oriented to or familiar with housing for homeless populations and (2) transitional housing operators that require programmatic and technical support in converting facilities and programs to PSH. Staff and consultants will offer technical assistance, provide capacity building grants, develop financial tools and foster the policy support needed to create between 200 and 300 new PSH units in Los Angeles over the next two years.

P. S. Arts

Venice, CA
$250,000 – 2 years
June 2012

The TakePART (Public-school Arts Regional Team) initiative is a collaborative effort to create and sustain arts education programs across three neighboring school districts in the Centinela Valley region of Southern California. TakePART – Visual Arts is the visual arts component of the overall initiative. The goal is to provide visual arts instruction either in school or after school for approximately 4,685 K-5th grade students that increases their competitive advantage for higher education and professional opportunities and engages the entire community. P. S. ARTS, serving as the facilitator of the collaborative and arts coordinator for the three school districts, works to reduce costs and maximize resources, including human resources. An outside program evaluator will measure the impact of the program to determine if this approach significantly increases arts program feasibility and sustainability.

Public Counsel Law Center

Los Angeles, CA
$250,000 – 3 years
June 2012

In December 2010, Public Counsel and its partners reached a settlement with Los Angeles County to reform conditions for youth with developmental disabilities in the juvenile halls, in placement (foster care, group homes, relative caregivers), and home with family under field supervision. Public Counsel will work through December 2014 to ensure effective implementation of the settlement agreement. The overall goal is that developmentally disabled youth in the juvenile justice system will be immediately and effectively identified; will not be detained longer than others because of the lack of available, appropriate community placements; and will be provided with appropriate services and effective supports to successfully transition back to the community and avoid recidivism and violence. Implementation of the agreement will be monitored through visits to the halls, observation, interviews, and document and data review. Public Counsel will address problems through written communication with the Chief of Probation and opposing counsel; meeting with them to mediate disputes and develop action plans; accessing the courts as needed; and providing advocacy to individual youth to obtain school or Regional Center services as needed.

Spark Los Angeles

Los Angeles, CA
$150,000 – 2 years
June 2012

Los Angeles has one of the highest high-school dropout rates in the nation. Spark LA addresses this problem in the middle-school years by re-engaging at-risk students from disadvantaged communities in their education through individualized apprenticeships in their chosen “dream jobs.” Spark LA taps volunteer resources to create a hands-on apprenticeship experience for each student in a career of their choice at a real workplace. In parallel with the apprenticeship experience, a Leadership Class at school helps students connect the applied learning from the apprenticeships with their classroom curriculum, demonstrating the importance of their academics and improving classroom motivation. Spark LA’s goal is to create a total of 650 apprenticeship experiences for low-income Los Angeles students over the next two years.

University of California System

Oakland, CA
$100,000 – 2 years
June 2012

COSMOS is an intensive four-week summer residential program for students with a demonstrated aptitude for academic and professional careers in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. Talented and motivated students completing grades 8-12 have the opportunity to work with UC faculty and scientists in state-of-the-art facilities while exploring advanced STEM topics beyond the courses usually offered in California high schools. Through challenging curriculum that is both hands-on and lab intensive, COSMOS fosters its students’ interests, skills, and awareness of educational and career options in STEM fields. Students apply to one of the four University of California COSMOS campuses – UC Davis, UC Irvine, UC San Diego and UC Santa Cruz. The curriculum of each program builds on the teaching and research expertise of the faculty at the host campus. With W. M. Keck Foundation support, a minimum of 36 low income students from Los Angeles will receive financial assistance enabling them to attend the program over the next two years.

Venice Arts

Venice, CA
$150,000 – 3 years
June 2012

Venice Arts is expanding its Art Mentoring program, offered free-of-charge to low-income youths ages 6-18. The program primarily reaches families in neighborhoods with high pockets of poverty on Los Angeles’ Westside, although youth from throughout the City may participate. Currently enrolling 200 youth each year, project goals are to increase the number of youths served in Venice and at partner sites by 30% (to 260); and to prepare more youth for advanced learning and college through a new “Bridge” component, targeting two ends of the student population: middle-school students and their parents, for whom the Bridge offers a structured pathway into the Advanced Studies track; and a small subset of older teens who are recent high school graduates needing continued support as they transition to adulthood.

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