Community Services Division

Community Services

The Community Services Division is responsible for service projects and programs which help to build the assets of individuals and organizations, maintain and increase community's assets, and establish household or individual self-sufficiency.

Community Services works to build the assets of our community's citizens by identifying needs or problems and working toward resolving issues effectively.

Money! Search & Rescue

One of leading causes of violence in the household is stress. Money difficulties, unquestionably, is a main contributor to that anxiety. The concern is as real as the demand to keep lights on, food available and work schedules seem almost impossible, much less forward planning like, saving for a rainy day, retirement, buying a car, or saving for rental deposit. Obtainable goals that seem so out of reach for so many families and individuals in Humboldt County. The sometime perceived inability to plan and reach targets can result in immeasurable stress that often manifests itself into a violent household.   

To address this critical area Redwood Community Action Agency (RCAA), under the Community Service Division, has developed a program called “Money! Search and Rescue”.  Money! Search and Rescue is not designed to make anyone rich, but it is designed to put clients in control of their money.  It does this by sharing money practices that are informative and road tested.  It provides contacts for free assistance to empower the clients with the knowledge and tools they need to navigate a wide variety of money topics. The Money! Search and Rescue curriculum incorporates the Your Money, Your Goals toolkit provided by the Office of Child Abuse Prevention. Subjects, information and tools provided include:

  • Setting obtainable financial goals
  • Saving for emergencies
  • Managing income
  • Paying bills
  • Improving cash flow
  • Dealing with debt
  • Student loans
  • Income Tax assistance
  • Tax credits
  • How to obtain your credit report
  • Identity theft and fraud
  • Banking basics

Delivering the lessons from "Your Money, Your Goals" (YMYG) to lower income and economically vulnerable families living in Humboldt County is an essential tool of RCAA's commitment to end the cycle of poverty in our community.  Our community has been hit hard economically with the decline in the timber and fishing industries. Many families are on the verge of financial ruin, losing their homes and homelessness. This is knowledge that families need to have.

RCAA will distribute this program in a variety of ways. We will reach out with opportunities to collaborate with family resource centers, Head Start centers, neighborhood communities, AFACTR programs, and tribal communities. There are plans to host our own workshops and seminars, as well as working directly with the family or individuals in need of specific subjects. The program is nimble enough to tailor each session to the community’s or individual’s need. 
The goal of Money! Search and Rescue is to empower participants and reduce the high level stress money issues often create in the family home. This program is made possible by a grant awarded to RCAA from the California Office of Child Abuse Prevention.

Please contact Lorey Keele with questions at (707) 269-2052 or lkeele@rcaa.org.

TOOTH Program

To assure, promote, and protect the oral health of Humboldt County’s children by increasing their oral health awareness, knowledge, and self-responsibility by developing positive, life-long oral health behaviors.

Teaching Oral Optimism throughout Humboldt County, (TOOTH) is an oral health program of the Redwood Community Action Agency, directed at providing education and preventive services in daycare and preschool settings, kindergarten, first, third and fifth grade students and their families throughout the community.


TOOTH originated from RCAA's Cesar Chavez Healthy Communities Project in 2001. Since 2002, TOOTH has served the preschool and K-6th grade population of Humboldt County children with the support of First 5 Humboldt and Circle of Smiles.

After hosting the program for seven years, the California Conservation Corps transitioned the program to RCAA in 2009.  Currently, the TOOTH Program is funded by Department of Health and Human Services’ CalFRESH Program, First 5 Humboldt, Humboldt County Office of Education, North Coast Grantmaking Partnership, Union Labor Health Foundation, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – Health Resources and Services Administration. 


ORAL HEALTH EDUCATION AND PREVENTION

DAYCARE SETTINGS

Oral Health Educators will provide two lessons to any family daycare or facility in Humboldt County.  Daycare curriculum will focus on the following topics, throughout the two lessons:

  • Proper tooth brushing techniques, using small circles
  • Brushing two times a day, for two minutes
  • Visiting the dentist and losing teeth
  • Germ prevention (hand washing, covering your cough & sharing toothbrushes)


PRESCHOOL

Oral Health Educators will provide 11 lessons to every preschool in Humboldt County. Preschool curriculum will focus on the following topics, throughout various lessons:

  • Proper tooth brushing techniques, using small circles
  • Brushing two times a day, for two minutes
  • Visiting the dentist and losing teeth
  • Germ prevention (hand washing, covering your cough & sharing toothbrushes)
  • Nutrition (food pyramid, everyday foods & special treats, health beverages
  • Exercise & sleep
 

ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

Oral Health lessons will be provided to kindergarten, 1st, 3rd and 5th grade students in all elementary schools throughout Humboldt County. The lessons will focus on the following topics:

  • Proper tooth brushing & flossing techniques
  • Brushing two times a day, for two minutes
  • Visiting the dentist and losing teeth
  • Germ prevention (hand washing, covering your couth & sharing toothbrushes)
  • Nutrition/exercise (importance to teeth, food pyramid, need for exercise/water)
  • Tobacco/drug use: gum disease, bone loss & oral cancer (5th grade only)

COMMUNITY EDUCATION


TOOTH will provide oral health education, dental disease prevention workshops, and dental supplies to caregivers and parents in Humboldt County. This goal will  be accomplished by providing workshops at playgroups, school parent night and community health fairs.

Adult and Family Services

ADULT AND FAMILY SERVICES:
The Adult and Family Services programs within the Community Services Division of Redwood Community Action Agency (RCAA) provide diverse and comprehensive services to individual adults and families with children who are vulnerable, experiencing homelessness and the long-term impacts of intergenerational poverty and complex traumas.   

Parents and Children in Transition:  
RCAA’s Parents and Children in Transition Program (PACT) is unique to our community, as there is not another comprehensive shelter, re-housing and aftercare program that has the ability to serve approximately forty families per year with the current level of services provided and/or available. Participants are referred to the program through any of Humboldt County’s Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS) programs that serve families (as they define themselves) with children, and women who are pregnant and their families. A majority of the children and parents/caregivers that access the PACT program have experienced an extensive history of complex traumas including homelessness. The PACT program operates through a trauma informed lens as well as a holistic, person-centered, strength based perspective and we value prevention and resiliency as key factors in the work with our clients. Additionally, most families that enter PACT come with a small team of providers from the community, including tribal partners, CWS Social Workers, CASA liaisons, legal advisors, Counselors, Substance Use Disorder providers, Physicians, and natural advocates. Each family’s needs are assessed and families are given the opportunity for additional team members to join their process.
The PACT Program provides short-term housing (3 months) with supportive services that promote self-sufficiency and reduce the risk factors associated with the impact of generational poverty including: holistic and comprehensive case management; stabilizing medical, dental and behavioral health needs and services; debt reduction and financial literacy; psycho-education; life skills; re-housing supports;  multidisciplinary referrals to resources; parenting guidance and education; and legal advocacy. Case management services continue to be offered during the duration of Aftercare services for six months post discharge from the PACT shelter portion of the program.

Donations needed for shelter sites and newly housed clients:

  • Diapers-size 2 and larger     
  • Baby wipes
  • Plastic laundry baskets (not mesh or wicker)
  • Unopened toiletries
  • Toilet paper
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Disposable razors
  • New umbrellas
  • Glass baking/casserole dishes
  • Twin size blankets
  • Twin size bed sheets (fitted and flat)
  • Twin size waterproof mattress covers
  • Chuck pads (disposable or washable)
  • New bath towels
  • New hand towels
  • New dish towels
  • New brooms
  • New mops
  • Unopened art/craft supplies for children and adults
  • Socks-(baby, toddler, child, junior, adult sizes) 
  • Shower curtains (full bath and shower sizes)
If you would like to make a donation to any of our Adult & Families programs, please call (707) 269-2013 to make arrangements for a drop off time and location.
 

AFACTR AmeriCorps

The mission of the AFACTR (Assisting Families to Access Change Through Resources) AmeriCorps program is to strengthen Humboldt County communities and families through collaborative work with Family Resource Centers and Child Welfare Services. By providing families with basic case management, parenting lessons and increasing the awareness of local resources members are helping to: reduce family isolation, create healthy families, and improve outcomes of children and families who are in need and/or at risk for child abuse.  The primary purpose of the program is to help prevent child abuse in Humboldt County.

AFACTR AmeriCorps Members will:
*Provide families with preventative case management
*Make referrals for families to needed local resources
*Support positive family and community connections for children
*Teach Nurturing Parenting Lessons
*Participate in national service days

If you are interested in serving as an AFACTR AmeriCorps Member, please contact Daniel Gallardo, Program Coordinator, at (707) 269-2047 for more information.

  

 

How do RCAA's programs impact you?

  • Natural Resouces Services (NRS) works directly with Humboldt County community leaders, schools and parents to improve safety and encourage more children to safely walk and bicycle to school. NRS helps coordinate both the Greater Eureka and Humboldt County Safe Routes to School Task Forces.
  • Teaching preschoolers oral health care is a result of the TOOTH program.
  • Natural Resources Services works with community members, civic groups and local jurisdictions to enhance neighborhood street tree planting and support the development of community forests for public access and watershed protection.