2011-12 Annual Report
Board of Directors Donald Jen , Chair Chris Murray, Treasurer Abby Cohen Nikole Wilson-Ripsom Robin Phipps Fred Atilano, Emeritus
Don Jen Dear Friends, This is a particularly exciting time for BANANAS, as we look both backwards and forwards. Backwards, because in the last fiscal year we said goodbye to two of our Founding Mothers, Arlyce Currie and Jo Ellen Spencer, and to a long-time and beloved Executive, Blanca Nunez. And forwards, because we welcome our new Executive Director, Richard Winefield, who will lead the charge as we cap off four decades of service and prepare for our future – one which may look different from our past to reflect significant changes in government funding priorities, technology, family structures and the needs of today’s parents. Like most organizations dependent on government funds, BANANAS had a challenging year. Our government contracts shrunk, yet the need for our services was never greater. Affordable, reliable child care remains a scarce resource for many families. Yet these families, like so many before them, could count on BANANAS to provide caring, competent child care referrals, as well as a wide menu of parenting classes – all without fees to all who needed us. But we don’t stop with families. We work hard to ensure that there is a strong network of child care providers to serve them. We help providers become established and licensed, and we provide ongoing support with workshops and trainings. Each child
care provider is, in fact, a small business that serves our community while pumping money back into the economy through their purchases, employees, and taxes. So our role in strengthening child care not only helps families, but also helps rebuild the economy. As we ponder our past and prepare for our future, one thing is crystal clear: BANANAS remains committed to serving the families and providers who need us with caring, individualized attention. Please read this report with that in mind. We have gone beyond the numbers to present the real heart of our work through stories from individuals who serve and are served by BANANAS. Our gut tells us that government funding for child care programs like ours is not going to snap back anytime soon. So we are doubling down on our efforts to build a more diverse base of supporters. If we already count you among them, we are extraordinarily grateful. And if not, we hope the stories and numbers in this report make a convincing case to add your name to our list. Thanks “a bunch”,
Don Jen, Chair, Board of Directors
A member of the BANANAS bunch for 25 years, Robin has worn every possible yellow hat: client, staff member, volunteer, and Board member. Yet, her commitment to our mission is just as strong today as it was when she first walked through our doors in the early 1980s, looking for part-time employment in the child care field. Robin took advantage of the counseling and job listings at BANANAS to land a position as Director of an after-school program. But after two years, she was again scanning our job boards with one goal in mind: to find a position right here at BANANAS. She joined BANANAS as an Alternative Payments Counselor, helping parents enroll in subsidized child care programs. When she became a parent herself several years later, she moved from staff to volunteer as a Resource and Referral Counselor – and to our great benefit, she has never looked back. Twenty years later, Robin is still an active volunteer – only now as a member of our Board of Directors. What keeps her so committed to BANANAS? Robin says that her work here gives her a real sense of purpose, since what we do can literally change lives. She has been fortunate and feels a moral imperative to give back – not just with her time, but with financial support as well. She and her husband, Tom, are long-term donors to BANANAS. Robin feels great optimism about the future of BANANAS. “I know we will continue to set an example with creative solutions to today’s challenges. The commitment and capabilities of our amazing staff ensure that BANANAS will remain a pillar of support for families and child care providers, and I’m very proud to be part of the team.” Robin Phipps BANANAS Board Member
Our Mission To ensure that all families in Northern Alameda County – regardless of income – have access to child care and early childhood education through a range of services tailored to support the individual needs of parents and providers.
Programs & Sources At BANANAS, we support parents in a myriad Support for Families with Special Needs of ways – from helping them find the best Children: Finding child care is even more child care provider for their particular needs, difficult for parents with a child who needs to offering educational workshops designed to special attention or services “My staff improve their parenting knowledge and skills. due to a disability. and I have attended But parents are only half of the equation. We help parents the Child Development classes for We know the importance of building of children with Spanish speakers offered by BANANAS. and supporting a strong network of disabilities These classes have helped us grow our child child care providers of all shapes through development vocabulary and have enriched our and sizes, so we offer a robust menu enhanced child understanding of the key issues for children from of provider trainings, resources and care referrals birth to age three.” technical assistance. by offering Yeira Howell additional Family Child Care Provider Services for parents and families include support and followthe following: up during their child care search. In the past year Information and Referral: BANANAS 1,139 children with special needs, members provides referrals to all types of child care of their families, and child care providers were options, including family child care homes, supported in this way. child care centers, playgroups, coops, inhome caregivers, and shared child care Access to Child Care Subsidies: Many arrangements. In the past year we handled working families in low-wage jobs depend 3,261 child care referral phone calls and on government subsidies for child e-mails. care expenses. BANANAS helps “I’m a parents access the subsidy single mom and my Workshops and Support program and find suitable son has a learning disability. Groups: BANANAS offers child care, which enables BANANAS provided guidance to monthly workshops to help them to go to work or help me find child care so that I can attend college knowing he is in good parents approach the child school. We also administer hands.” care selection process, improve a program specifically their parenting skills, and learn designed to cover respite Mahogany Dove new coping tactics for a range of care (short-term emergency Parent issues. In the past year we delivered child care for families who are 108 workshops for 1,165 parents and family in crisis). In the past year, BANANAS members. helped 868 children to receive child care subsidies.
Basic Necessities: We offer free clothing, equipment, toys, diapers, and furniture for infants and children of low-income families. These items are donated by other parents and supporters, and families in need can simply take what they need without the hassle of paperwork. In a typical week, close to 100 families visit BANANAS for this purpose.
As new members of our neighborhood, we would have been lost without the local knowledge and personalized advice BANANAS provided. We now enjoy two nanny shares which are working out beyond our expectations. Rockridge Parents
We strengthen the network of child care providers with services that include: A Focus on Inclusion: BANANAS provides Provider Resources and Support: free, multilingual training specifically designed BANANAS provides care givers with to support child care providers as they build information on a variety of topics, including inclusive programs for children with special start-up and licensing, insurance, curriculum, needs. As noted above, hundreds of providers safety, federal food programs, training received this support from BANANAS in the opportunities, accreditation, field trips, past year, in a variety of languages. equipment, and supplies. Our referral service For both parents and providers, “For helps providers seventeen years, I have we reach beyond our physical reach or maintain relied on BANANAS for referrals to my boundaries via our website, their capacity. family-based child care center. With their where visitors from across the support, my program has always been full and I In the past year county to across the country have a long waiting list.” thousands of find a wealth of information on providers turned Fekirte Tadesse child care, child development, to BANANAS Family Day Care Provider online and offline resources, for support, which and of course, what’s happening we provided in English, at BANANAS. Chinese, Vietnamese, Spanish, Laotian Thai, Mien, French, and Amharic. Training and Professional Development: BANANAS offers career counseling, job listings, workshops, and other professional growth opportunities specifically designed for providers. In the past year we delivered 158 workshops and classes for 3,543 for child care providers.
“I have been a client of BANANAS for over ten years. The staff helped me find a great child care provider that I can afford, which meant that I could attend school and become employed.” Karen Lamar Single Mom
Source & Usage of Funds BANANAS BUDGET BREAKDOWN Data from FY 11-12 Audit & 990 Where the Money Comes From Historically, BANANAS has depended primarily on government support – but with shrinking government resources, we are committed to building a more diversified and sustainable funding base. Over the next few years, we hope this chart looks quite different, with greater proportions of our budget from foundation, corporate and individual supporters. Government First 5 of Alameda County Program Support - Parent Fees Foundation Individual Corporate Other TOTAL
86% 6% 2% 1% 0% 0% 4%
8,493,917 596,995 233,468 57,000 37,350 32,370 413,738 9,864,838
Where the Money Goes We are proud of our stewardship of public and private funds and donations. Ninety-nine cents of every dollar in our budget goes directly into programming – a claim few nonprofits can match. Please contact our office for audited financial statements. Program 96% 9,717,208 Management and General 4% 410254 Fundraising 0% 797 TOTAL 10,128,259
GOVERNMENT FIRST 5 PROGRAM SUPPORT FOUNDATION INDIVIDUAL CORPORATE OTHER
PROGRAM MANAGEMENT & GENERAL FUNDRAISING
Carmen & David Ocampo Carmen and David emigrated from Mexico in 2000 in search of a safe place to raise their three daughters. To make ends meet, Carmen cared for an infant in her home while David did construction work. Knowing that Carmen worked in child care in Mexico, a friend referred her to BANANAS.
Over the years, Carmen and David have hired and trained many child care workers – six of whom have opened their own facilities with BANANAS’ support, including one of their daughters. They welcome new providers and share with them the lessons that have made their business so successful.
Carmen and David were thrilled with the warm welcome from our Spanish- speaking staff. They attended BANANAS workshops on child development, CPR, and other topics and within a year were operating a licensed child care program in their Berkeley home.
Carmen and David share the philosophy that “It is an honor that parents leave their greatest treasure with us – their children.” BANANAS is proud of the role we have played in supporting Carmen, David and many others like them who provide this important service to our community.
Fast forward three years. Their program had grown to eight children and with Carmen’s encouragement, David joined her in running the business. They now serve 14 families and have a long waiting list for their Spanish immersion program.
Carmen and David Ocampo Kid’s Land
Matilde (Maty) was still in the maternity ward following the birth of her daughter when she first learned of BANANAS from information the hospital provided for new parents. On leave from her job, Maty knew she’d need help finding and paying for child care when it was time to return to work. So she turned to BANANAS, where we helped her enroll on the eligibility list for child care subsidies and encouraged her to attend our classes for new parents. Those classes were the beginning of a long and personal relationship between Maty and BANANAS. “I was a young mother and I didn’t really know how to be a parent. I didn’t understand how the subsidy system worked. So I took every class I could, and I gained the confidence and knowledge I needed – everything about child care and parenting, from A to Z!”
When Maty qualified for child care support, we helped her find a Spanish-speaking provider. Today, that provider not only cares for both of Maty’s children, but she is also their godmother, honoring the important role she plays in their lives. Maty also became involved in advocacy through Parent Voices (now an independent nonprofit) and through that commitment, she found her speaking voice. She became part of a larger community that included other parents and the BANANAS staff, all working to making quality child care accessible and affordable to all families. Today, Maty is a working mom and is enrolled in an Associate of Arts degree in child development. “At BANANAS, I found confidence, power, and a family”, she says. “That first visit to BANANAS turned out to be life-changing.”
Tina Fleeton Tina Fleeton first came to BANANAS in 1994 as a parent in search of child care services for her infant son. With help from BANANAS, she qualified for a child care subsidy, located a provider right in her neighborhood, enrolled her son in the program and was able to continue her education. After completing an Associate of Arts degree, Tina landed a position at the Child Care Resource and Referral Network. But her dream was to be part of the BANANAS bunch and in 1998, she joined our staff as an Alternative Payment and Resource and Referral Counselor, helping parents qualify for and find affordable child care. Tina was drawn to the family-focused mission of BANANAS and believes that having walked in their shoes, she can relate on a personal level to the parents she counsels.
In her 14 years of working with BANANAS, Tina has seen lots of changes. We now offer greater depth in our workshops and trainings, and the diversity and language capability of our staff has expanded dramatically to reflect the populations we serve. And of course, we can now communicate seamlessly with parents and providers through email and our website. But one thing hasn’t changed: our laser focus on serving our community. Tina says it best: “We’ve never lost sight of our goals. We are here to serve parents and to provide a welcoming, strong community for both parents and providers.” Tina is proud to be a role model for other parents and feels a sense of accomplishment at having come full circle – from a parent in need of our services, to a staff member who provides those services to others. Tina Fleeton BANANAS Counselor
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5232 Claremont Ave. Oakland, CA 94618
Published on Mar 1, 2013
BANANAS is a non-profit child care referral and support agency serving the diverse families in Northern Alameda County, California. We provi...