As our work is accelerating and the initiatives of the Fresno Stewardship Initiative grow, maintaining connections is essential. My goal is to connect with you weekly to keep you informed about the people, ideas, and initiatives we are connecting to create a great community. This will equip you to inspire hope, action and confidence in the people in your networks to help us scale.
The dictionary says that Connection is a relationship in which a person, thing, or idea is linked or associated with something else. Relationships make things happen. The Business Council is about connections. Our task is to “link, align and leverage” ideas, initiatives, resources, and people in order to create a great community.
Priority Initiatives of the Fresno Stewardship Initiative:
• Community Scorecard
How do we measure our progress? Attached is a short briefing about the Community Scorecard. The leadership team includes board members Brian Angus, Scott Rhodes and Alan Pierrot. Leaders from all sectors are participating. You will be informed about a series of focus groups to identify the specific indicators to guide our work and hold ourselves accountable.
• School Readiness
We have launched an entrepreneurial effort to pay moms to teach moms in their neighborhood to prepare their own children for kindergarten. Our execution partner is Every Neighborhood Partnership. This low cost approach has the potential to intervene in family patterns, strengthen neighborhoods, improve academic outcomes and lift neighborhoods out of poverty. Superintendent Hanson has committed to funding the pilot. Alan Pierrot and Artie Padilla are providing leadership.
• Mental Health Initiative
Doug Noll and Lynne Ashbeck are guiding the work of a multi-sector coalition to create an integrated system to address homelessness, mental health, addiction and crime. The central element is the Fresno Restoration Center based upon a highly successful approach in San Antonio. The ROI in systems savings in San Antonio has been $25 million a year. Ending the expensive churn of people who go in and out of the jails and ER’s will have a huge impact. We are moving into Phase II—recruiting and training a board, engaging a project leader and creating a legal entity. At full build-out, the project is anticipated to cost $110,000. The savings in multiple systems is exponentially greater.