9/13/2016 – St. Helena, CA – The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) has announced $2.8 million from Auction Napa Valley proceeds for local nonprofits that help local youth succeed in school and in life. These investments help children enter kindergarten ready to learn, support students in achieving academic goals and assist young people in developing healthy behaviors and leadership skills as they transition to adulthood.
In this category, NVV invested $800,000 in the Napa Valley Early Learning Initiative (NVELI) in this grant cycle. The NVV has already provided $3 million to the NVELI, which is demonstrating significant success in helping to close the educational achievement gap for English language learners in Napa County.
The nonprofit organizations receiving the remaining $2 million serving nearly 20,000 Napa youth (along with nearly 8,000 teachers and school administrators) are: Aim High; Big Brothers Big Sisters of the North Bay; Boys & Girls Clubs of Napa and American Canyon; Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Helena and Calistoga; Child Start; Community Resources for Children; Napa CASA; NapaLearns; On the Move; and Summer Search. The programs offered through these nonprofits touch the lives of children from infancy to high school and beyond.
These organizations provide services and programs to help build a solid foundation and motivation for children’s success in school. This may include in-classroom or out-of-classroom enrichment, mental health services, mentoring, access to technology and parental/family educational support.
Aim High, one of NVV’s newest nonprofit partners, provides a dynamic mix of academic, physical fitness and self-esteem classes for under-resourced middle school students from Napa and American Canyon. With the void of summer school opportunities created by state budget cuts, many parents have struggled to find ways to keep their kids active and learning from June to August. Aim High helps students gain skills and confidence that impacts them not only during the summer but also during the school year.
“Funding from the Napa Valley Vintners helps our students stay on track academically, cultivate college-bound mindsets and develop positive attitudes toward learning,” said Alec Lee, executive director for Aim High. “Our inaugural summer in Napa was tremendous and it wouldn’t have been possible without the Vintners’ anchor grant. We look forward to a second outstanding summer in 2017 working with the Napa Valley community.”
Examples of NVV-funded programs that support academic success, character development and healthy lifestyles for Napa County children are the Boys & Girls Clubs of Napa Valley and American Canyon and the Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Helena and Calistoga, which provide a safe and engaging place for children in grades 1 through 12 in the critical after-school hours while parents are working. In addition to this year’s funding grants, the NVV recently gave $4 million toward new Boys & Girls Clubs facilities in Calistoga and American Canyon.
“One of the best ways to prevent youth from entering the criminal justice system is to assure that they have positive activities and friends. Napa County is fortunate to have a variety of programs youth can participate in, such as our Boys & Girls Clubs, while learning to make good life choices,” said Mary Butler, chief probation officer for Napa County. “Studies show most juvenile crime occurs during the hours of 3 and 7 p.m. Providing youth activities during those hours helps reduce juvenile crime and assures safer communities.”