Santa Barbara County Businesses Sign On to “Inspire”
New Program Engages Local Businesses and Organizations in a County-Wide Effort to Support Resource Families and Foster Youth
Local businesses and community organizations are signing on to participate in a new and innovative county-wide program to support Santa Barbara County resource families and transitional foster youth, ages 18-21.
Spearheaded by Our County Our Kids, a program of the Santa Barbara County Department of Social Services, the newly launched Inspire Business Program gives businesses and organizations a variety of ways to help support resource families and normalize the experiences of children in their care while simultaneously supporting the county’s economy and driving traffic to local businesses.
“We’ve heard from a number of business owners and community organizations who are looking for ways to strengthen their communities by lifting up our foster youth and the adults supporting them,” said Gustavo Prado, Department Business Specialist, Adult and Children Services, Santa Barbara County Department of Social Services. “We are very excited to launch the Inspire Business Program and are grateful to the businesses who have already signed-on.”
Michaels in Santa Maria was one of the first to join the Inspire program and will be providing resource families and foster youth with 15% discounts to support their creative endeavors. Additionally, they will join Our County Our Kids at community events to raise awareness and distribute coupons. Monighetti’s One Stop Livestock Supplies, Inc. in Buellton has also signed on as an Inspire partner.
Businesses are invited to join the Inspire program by partnering with Our County Our Kids primarily to provide discounts on goods and services to resource families who are working with foster children and youth. Other ways to help include: connecting with area non-profits to host fundraisers, donating funds or programs supplies, serving as donation collection points, distributing Our County Our Kids materials, and helping to promote upcoming information sessions to recruit more supportive resource families for Santa Barbara County foster children and youth.
Interested organizations are also encouraged to provide work experience opportunities or internships to older foster youth who are preparing to enter adulthood. As many foster youth approach this crucial transitional period, many are still searching for a career path or passion to pursue and benefit significantly from the guidance and mentorship of leaders in the business community.
“There is a way for every type of business or professional to get involved in helping our youth grow and succeed,” said Matt Pennon, Our County Our Kids Resource Family Recruiter and Trainer and principal Inspire Business recruiter. “The Inspire Business program truly serves entire communities across the county.”
Participating businesses and organizations are offered a variety of benefits to build their business exposure and increase awareness of their involvement in the program. For more information on how to participate, contact Matt Pennon at 805-698-2703 or M.Pennon@OurCountyOurKids.org or visit http://ourcountyourkids.org/.
Our County. Our Kids is a program of the Santa Barbara County Department of Social Services (SBC DSS). It is the SBC DSS resource family recruitment, retention, and support program. Visit www.ourcountyourkids.org/ for more information.
Mar 10, 2017