What is the Santa Barbara County Network of Family Resource Centers?

The Santa Barbara County Network of Family Resource Centers (SBC NFRC) is a collaborative of organizations located across Santa Barbara County united in providing quality services for children, families and communities. Formed in 2008 and now administered by the Santa Barbara County Department of Social Services and funded by First 5 of Santa Barbara County, the NFRC works collectively to promote best practices that benefit children and families in Santa Barbara County.

What is a Family Resource Center?

Family Resource Centers (FRCs) are community hubs for family wellbeing, children’s healthy growth and development, civic engagement, and community transformation. In Santa Barbara County, they are operated by different organizations. Together they serve well over 10,000 families across the country annually. Schools, medical clinics, nonprofit organizations, and neighbors and friends refer families to FRCs.

Family Resource Centers work with families to assess their strengths and needs and to connect them to relevant, helpful resources provided by their FRC and its partners. FRCs offer help with registering for CalFresh, MediCal, and utility subsidies; food and diaper banks; parenting and healthy relationship classes; child developmental screening, language translation; information about immigration; and more. FRCs do far more than providing services. Staff build relationships with families and give them opportunities to engage in their communities.

The Network supports Family Resource Centers in Santa Barbara County by spearheading

Training

Trainings for FRC and other family support staff. The learning curve for family support staff is rigorous.  The Network has coordinated trainings to cover vital topics such as: Mental Health First Aid, mandated reporting, human trafficking, results-based accountability, food insecurities, child development and attachment.  Common language, tools, and resources help ensure quality of care for children and families in our communities.

We provide staff training on the nationally-adopted Standards of Quality for Family Strengthening and Support in collaboration with CalTrin.

Locally developed and other trainings and supports are available in our learning management system.

Membership Meetings

FRC supervisors, agency leaders and members from aligned organizations meet bimonthly. The executive directors of FRCs meet quarterly.

Our members serve communities across Santa Barbara County. 

Advocacy

Sustainability of Programs. Despite being a critical resource for our most underserved residents, Family Resource Centers do not have consistent and substantial funding. The agencies that provide them must seek private and grant funding to provide services. Through the Network, agencies have collaborated successfully obtain federal, state and local funding.

We work with government and non-profit partners to align systems that serve families. We provide expertise and leadership to promote coordinated services and holistic approach to family wellness. At the state level, we work with the California Family Resource Association. 

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