February 8, 2020
Local agencies receive $1.4 million from Alabama Children’s Trust Fund
MOBILE, Alabama — The Alabama Children’s Trust Fund (CTF) secures resources to fund evidence-based community programs committed to the prevention of child maltreatment. Alabama Department of Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention, Sallye Longshore, Executive Director, and state Rep. Matt Simpson presented a check to Mobile and Baldwin Counties agencies in the amount of $1,405,500.
Along with the Mobile County Health Department (MCHD), the agencies sharing this funding are AltaPointe Health Systems; Auburn University; Baldwin County Child Advocacy Center; Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Alabama; Coastal Family Partners; Crittenton Youth Services; Goodwill Gulf Coast; Gulf Regional Early Childhood Services; The Family Center; United Cerebral Palsy of Mobile; United Methodist Children’s Home; and United Methodist Inner City Mission.
Representing MCHD were Dr. Kevin Philip Michaels, Health Officer for Mobile County; Pebbles King, the Bureau Director of Community and Nutrition Services; Cmdr. Curtis Graves, Program Administrator for the Fatherhood Initiative; and Ernest G. Scott, Program Administrative Support for the Fatherhood Initiative.
The Mobile County Health Department received $95,000 to assist with its Fatherhood Initiative. The program equips parents with the skills necessary to be a positive influence in their children’s lives.
Two participants in MCHD’s Fatherhood Initiative spoke during the check presentation on their powerful experiences.
“This program makes a change for people,” Mary Blevins, graduate said. “To be a good parent, you need to have a positive mind. The Fatherhood has good leaders who help you be a better person. You go into the program one way and leave another.”
“I’ve been in the program for eight months,” Germaine Moore said. “It has been very helpful. It has given me a chance, and I took advantage of it. Now I am a longshoreman and in a union. My child was born four months early. Fatherhood has made me a better man and better father.” Mr. Germaine will graduate in four months.
“The Mobile County Health Department’s Fatherhood Initiative is grateful to the Alabama Children’s Trust Fund for its financial and technical support,” said Cmdr. Graves, who is also Director of the Mobile Police Department’s Office of Strategic Initiatives. “We would also like to extend our gratitude to the Alabama Department of Human Resources. Together, the two agencies continue to work in concert with MCHD in our ongoing and intentional efforts to remove barriers that imped the health and economic stability of families throughout Mobile County.”
Graves goes on to say, “The strength of any city can only be determined by its weakest members. Through the financial support of CTF, the Mobile County Health Department’s Fatherhood Initiative can continue in its efforts to bring strength and the realization of self-actualization to families across Mobile.”
The Alabama Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Act was adopted by the Alabama Legislature in 1983 to address the state’s growing problem of child neglect and maltreatment. While several state agencies already existed to deal with different aspects of child abuse, none of these agencies specifically focused on solving the problem before it occurred.
It was clear that Alabama needed to create a state agency with its own board, funding, and staff to be dedicated solely to preventing child abuse. To address the problem at its origin, instead of merely addressing the symptoms of what could have been prevented, the Children’s Trust Fund was established. These dollars are intended to provide annual funding of community-based prevention programs throughout the state as well as create a self-sustaining pool to provide for funding these programs in the future.
To learn more about the Children’s Trust Fund in Alabama, visit www.ctf.alabama.gov.