What does Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth do?
Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth is a member-led, multi-racial community organization working to create a city of hope, opportunity, and justice for all children and all families in San Francisco. We organize young people, parents, and San Francisco residents around campaigns that build leadership in our communities, win policy and budget solutions that improve the lives of SF poor and working class families, and create long-term social change in our communities.
We fight to keep families in San Francisco, to secure a strong future for young people of color in their own city, and to expand democratic participation in civic life. Since 2005, we have focused on winning education equity, good jobs, affordable family housing, and a strong safety net for low income families in the city budget.
What can I do to help?
Sign up to receive our email alerts, join our supporter network, or make a donation today >> here. If you are a low to moderate income student or parent/guardian of a child in San Francisco public schools, you may be interested in joining our family membership: call our organizing department at 415.239.0161 for more information.
I don’t have a lot of time, what are some things I can do?
History is made through the efforts of everyday people. Each contribution makes a difference. Get involved in your own school or neighborhood or join Coleman’s Supporter Network to get connected to thousands of like-minded people who care about the future of children but may not have a lot of time. Our email alerts have opportunities to make an impact: we can each spend five minutes sending an e-mail to the Mayor to save vital youth programs or call a School Board member to support college access for all students.
What is the Children’s Fund?
The Children’s Fund was the brainchild of Margaret Brodkin, Coleman’s Executive Director for twenty-six years. Since the Fund’s historic passage by city voters in 1991, the Children’s Fund has been a guaranteed source of funding for children each year in the San Francisco city budget, based on a percent of property tax revenue. Learn more at Our Legacy page >> here; or at the San Francisco Department of Children, Youth, and Their Families (DCYF)>> here.
Where can I get more information about San Francisco children and families?
Visit the city’s Department of Children, Youth & Families’ website to get more information about San Francisco children and families >> here. For information about the real poverty line and what it takes to make ends meet for SF families, check out the SF Self-Sufficiency Standard >> here.
Where can I learn more about your staff or find a bio for a staff member?
Go to our Staff and Board page, to find a bio and contact information for a staff member >> here.
Does this work really make a difference?
Absolutely. Here are some recent successes we have achieved:
- On May 26, 2009, hundreds of Coleman parent and youth members and allies mobilized to the San Francisco Board of Education to call for justice and equal opportunity for all students. We brought 3,000 postcards to show the incredible community support for a new “A-G” policy that will finally give all students access to the courses that they need to attend college or to get a good living wage job in our city – the ‘college track’ classes now reserved for just a few.
- In 2010, Coleman members restored funding for summer school for the 9th graders who needed credit recover the most, in order to stay on track to graduate and be college-ready.
- In 2011, Coleman parents of ESL students won funding for an elementary school-site technology center and began developing a long-term technology plan for their school, which serves mostly low-income immigrant children who do not have internet access at home.
Is Coleman’s community center available for community meetings or events?
Yes. Coleman Advocates’ community center has conference room and community event space available for rent. Please call us at 415.239.0161 for more information. We also lease space to child and family serving agencies. Our current tenants are: APA Family Services: http://www.apasfgh.org and Mission Neighborhood Centers/Mission Head Start: http://www.mncsf.org/htdocs/child_dev_continued.html#MHS.