San Francisco youth programs get funding boost

More than 100 nonprofit agencies who offer youth programs in San Francisco will benefit from a big funding boost.

Over the next five years, a total of $377 million will help fund after school programs, provide job placement opportunities for teens and funding for case management supportive services for the Young Adult program, which offers an alternative to detention for youth.

Mayor Mark Farrell with other city officials and students made the announcement of the new funding on Thursday at James Denman Middle School. Farrell said:

“We need to make sure our children receive a quality education, that they live in safe and supportive homes and communities, and with that, they can achieve amazing things in life.”

Funding for the youth programs comes from the 2014 voter-approved Proposition C, which increased The City’s Children’s Fund from three cents to four cents of every $100 assessed property value. The ballot measure also extended the Children’s Fund to 2041 and extended the age group to 18 to 24 of who can be served by the Children’s fund.

The Department of Children, Youth and Their Families (DCYF) administers the funds. A request for proposals went out from DCYF to nonprofits to see which programs would be funded, said Maria Su, DCYF executive director:

“Nonprofit agencies will be receiving $75 million to provide services for our children, youth and families in over 300 schools and community-based agencies and sites throughout the entire city, in all 11 districts.”

Su said 294 programs were chosen from 151 nonprofit organizations:

“We are ensuring equitable access to the services and opportunities that all of our children, youth and families to need to lead lives of opportunity and happiness with a deep focus ensuring access for San Francisco’s children who need it the most.”

SFUSD Superintendent Vincent Matthews said the funding from DCYF helps provide the much-needed after school programs for students, especially for working families:

“This allows our schools to partner with our very dedicated community partners in every neighborhood in The City to enrich and enhance our after school programs, student leadership programs, social emotional development and much more.”

The Beacon Community School strategy, modeled after a program in New York, provides “out of school programming” at nine schools in The City. The number of Beacon Community Schools will increase to 27.

Su said:

“It’s more than just money. It is a demonstration of dedication and love for our future.”