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Children and Family Council
Mission and Goals
Our mission is to nurture collaborative efforts by building bridges
and networks between people and agencies who share a vision of a healthier
community for children and families.
Established in 1994, we focus on prevention, coordination, and
streamlining services to better meet the needs of children and families.
Our focus on prevention comes from the belief that supporting
families early on to prevent unstable situations or crisis strengthens
families and builds healthier communities.
Our focus on coordination comes from the belief that joint efforts
result in greater impact. By allowing the collaborative to combine
resources, while working together across the county, we can do things that
no one entity could do alone. To support our mission, the council
meets regularly and appoints committees and subcommittees to address needs
The Anoka County Children and Family Council has two goals:
- Nurture collaborative efforts in Anoka County by building
relationships and networks to support healthy families and communities.
- Support efforts to improve family and educational functioning
while fostering a safe and stable environment for children.
We would like to extend a very special thank you to our Local
Collaborative Time Study participants from Anoka County Corrections, Anoka
County Public Health Nursing, and the seven school districts:
Anoka-Hennepin, Centennial, Columbia Heights, Fridley, St. Francis, Spring
Lake Park, and Forest Lake. The time so unselfishly given to the study
is greatly appreciated. Without the Local Collaborative Time Study,
many of the goals we share for our children and families would have gone
We would also like to thank the many local community organizations,
businesses and foundations for their generous contributions over the years.
Community Asset Fund
The Council has found, based on more than a decade of experience, that
there are a couple perpetual barriers to families’ success.
Those areas are mental health and immigrant and refugee issues. The
Council created the Community Asset Fund to foster new connections in the
community to collaboratively tackle these persistent issues.
Activities are varied and include providing hands-on training to
families and caregivers on more than a dozen specific topics. New
connections are being forged between medical and mental health
practitioners. Professional trainings are educating people on emerging
trends. Resources in the Community Asset Fund also are
available to remove barriers to direct care, such as help with costs for
mental illness drug prescriptions. For further information, please contact
Denise Kirmis at 763-712-2705.
ACCFC School District Partnership Grants
ACCFC School District Partnership Grants are an example of the
Council’s mission in action. An annual competitive process encourages
schools and community agencies to work together and submit projects that
efficiently and effectively support our children and families in Anoka
Past grantees have included:
- “Opening Doors for English Learners” is a project involving
schools in Columbia Heights and Spring Lake Park. It improved the
health, well-being and school readiness of children whose first language
is not English. A grant for $42,026 paid for a Spanish speaking
parent teacher, professional development for staff, and development of
- Homeless and highly mobile students were the target of a grant
from Emma B. Howe YMCA, Centennial and Spring Lake Park school
districts. They utilized $50,000 to conduct staff development and assist
in planning. Participants gained valuable resource and referral
information on foreclosure prevention, basic needs, and mental and
chemical health services.
- “Supporting Youth and Families Program” invested $50,000 in a
partnership of Columbia Heights School District, Columbia Heights Police
Department, Columbia Heights Assembly of God Church, U of M Extension,
Stages Theatre Company, and various youth and community groups.
Goals of “Supporting Youth and Families Program” included implementing
a youth leadership committee, a community website for youth, and a high
school student to elementary student mentorship program. Support for the
Columbia Heights Police Department youth basketball program was
School districts receive limited funds every year to respond to the
emergency needs of individual families, often related to housing, clothing,
transportation, medical care, etc. The key for these
funds is that individual school districts determine the most pressing needs
for their students.
Stipends and Sponsorships
The Council recognizes that we are not alone in the desire, or the
responsibility, to strengthen our communities. Funds are
available, on a limited basis, to help other community groups with their
events or special projects that align with the Council’s mission. The
Council also can help market events or projects by offering their stamp of
The Anoka County Children and Family Council is a Family Service
collaborative with joint membership comprised of Anoka County and seven
school districts, Anoka County Community Action Program (ACCAP), and three
appointed community agencies. In addition to participating members
from the joint powers agreement, we also have parent member representation
as well as additional interested community organizations and service