Michael Chavez Center becomes Monument Impact!

Mike Van Hofwegen - Monument ImpactI am excited to share with you our new agency name: Monument Impact. This name is the culmination of a three year process starting with discussions in 2011 that a year later merged two organizations, the Michael Chavez Center and Monument Community Partnership. The merger made it possible for us to improve in many ways: serving the community, integrating services, collaborating with schools, government and others, and working with residents to identify and address issues that are vital in our community. After months of input – from our board, staff, Taproot Foundation consultants, and most importantly, program participants and community stakeholders – the new name, tagline and logo were selected.

The name Monument Impact reflects both the population we serve and our goal to make a concrete, positive impact in everything we do. Our new tagline – Together, building a stronger community – conveys our vision to work with others in the community to build people up to overcome social and economic barriers and reach their true potential.

Though our name is new, our mission is still the same! We actively engage with the Monument community to provide training and tools in order for people to become economically self- sufficient, healthy and safe, civically engaged, connected to each other, and committed to life-long learning. 

What this means is captured in our new logo: the different colors represent the diversity of our community, the different sizes convey mentoring and training that result in the growth of individuals and the community, and the connection at the bottom symbolizes the strong community base which defines our work.

Why three figures? They represent the three pillars (program areas) that hold together and connect everything we do: economic development, civic engagement, and healthy community. We have learned from our hard working and resilient community members that we can’t be effective in one area without providing support with all three!

Economic Development embraces three programs: day labortechnology and career development. As a result of this work, some people are being trained in specific skills and are getting jobs, others are learning English, and many are crossing the digital divide  to connect with needed resources (and helping their children with homework!). In 2013 more than 500 people received skills training, at least 93 obtained temporary work, and 72 gained permanent employment!

Civic Engagement encompasses the many ways we work closely with community residents and the City of Concord to address issues that impact daily life. This includes everything from education about bedbugs to our youth development “Go Get It!” program. Our staff and volunteers provide free income tax services, support domestic violence and trafficking victims, carry out emergency response training, and facilitate a county wide network for a host of service providers. In all we do, we work with others to build a healthier, stronger Concord! In 2013 we helped 540 local residents to complete income tax returns and also provided tutoring, support and leadership development for 25 high school students working to make college part of their future!

Our Healthy Community program has been especially rewarding. Our approach is to “train the trainer” who then serves in the community as a resource. They work with schools, apartment complexes, and other community partners to provide nutrition and cooking classes, physical exercise opportunities such as walking and Zumba, and a community Health Fair that in 2013 served over 1,100 people! Families are getting healthier, especially as they learn about the risks of obesity and diabetes.

Last year we also collaborated with the San Francisco Giants to launch a Junior Giantsbaseball league for 150 Monument Community children ages 8-10! The Giants contributed the equipment but our staff gave many extra hours of their time to organize and manage the program. We are planning to continue this program again this year.

We are committed to providing the highest quality programs in the most cost effective way while diligently pursuing a broad base of support from government, businesses, foundations and faith based groups. But a major portion of our funding does come from generous supporters like you who care and invest in the work we do.

Right now our greatest financial need is for our Healthy Community Program, including Junior Giants. In June, a large grant we’ve relied on for the past three years will conclude.

I am asking for your help to continue this very important work. We need to raise a total of $30,000 to sustain this program through 2014.
Please consider making a donation today that will benefit many families who live and work in Concord. You truly can make a difference ….. Click on the Donation button now and together, we can build a stronger community!

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