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Westchester Community Opportunity Program Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Community & Neighborhood Development, Economic Development, Hot Lines & Crisis Intervention, Human Service Organizations, Human Services, Mental Health, Substance Abuse Dependency, Prevention & Treatment

Mission: To mobilize and efficiently manage resources through partnerships and collaborations to help the low-income and at-risk populations in the hudson valley region to achieve greater self-sufficiency.

Programs: Early childhood - westcop is the larger of two head start/early head start providers in westchester county and is the only approved provider in putnam county. Westcop has been providing high quality head start services since 1965, and early head start services since 1990. As an operator of 21 head start/early head start centers, westcop has developed and implemented several different service delivery models which are tailored to the needs of the specific community being served. Westcop serves children throughout the entire geographic service area, and relocates early childhood programs as populations shift and community needs arise. While our centers are spaced throughout the county, we currently have higher concentrations of centers located in lower income, more densely populated locales including mount vernon (5 centers), port chester (2 centers), yonkers (2 centers) and peekskill (2 centers)and ossining. The new early childhood director came on board on february 2, 2018 and replaced the previous director who was with westcop since 1971, and between her and the early childhood development team of coordinators, westcop has more than 200 years combined experience in head start and early head start services, and the head start program performance standards. In addtition to head start/early head start programs, serveral of our centers also offer therapeutic nursery, before and after school and and day care programs. The organization collaborates extensively with community organizations to provide high quality early childhood services for over 1,800 eligible children at 21 sites. We also have strong partnerships with numerous local government agencies at the city/town and county levels, including those in charge of health, social services, child protective services, mental health, early intervention, nutrition, hispanic affairs, women's issues and youth bureaus. In addition, westcop has been a primary partner in planning efforts around the needs of young children and their families through the integrated county planning: 0-6 committee, since that westchester groups inception in 2000. The effective administration and sound fiscal management of our early childhood education programs are well-known, and our program sites are used to train interns from local education institutions including graduate schools of social work of new york university, hunter college of the city university of new york, and fordham university, as well as the sarah lawrence college early childhood program. We are always looking for ways to expand our programming to meet our community's needs. In 2014, westcop was awarded a grant for babies step forward, a unique early head start program that provides high quality early child care and education with related support services for children ages 6 weeks to 3 years old and their families. In addition, westcop and port chester public schools started a major collaboration in 2015 to serve 125 pre-kindergarten children in a collaborative effort with the ongoing head start program. The layering of funds allows us to serve children from six hours a day to 10 hours a day depending on the family needs. This option has allowed moms to work full time and increase the financial stability of the family. In 2017, the program increased to serve 270 children in the two programs operating in port chester children's place and port chester head start. The programs both follow head start performance standards providing comprehensive services to children and families. In february 2017 westcop was funded by early head start partnership grant to implement an early/head start collaboration with four partners: 1) child care council of westchester; 2) child care council of putnam/dutchess; 3) family services of westchester; and 4) astor head start. The intent of this grant was to implement early head start standards in licensed community based child care and group family day care centers. Westcop proposed to work with eleven center based, as well as eleven group family day care sites. In westchester, putnam and dutchess counties. Supportive services in this program included facility renovations, additional equipment and supplies to all classrooms, training for staff, all of which support parents and increase the ability of centers to provide appropriate, comprehensive child care services. In addtion the program has provided assistant teachers, quality specialists, and nurses for each of the sites. To date westcop has 11 center based and 11 group family day care sites, all partners and families are working together to make this program a success story.

community services block grant the center of our operations are our neighborhood service centers (caps) which advocate for the poor and minorities by helping them identify and access community resources, providing direct services, and increasing self-sufficiency. Westcop operates caps in rockland and putnam counties, as well as the following westchester county communities: eastchester, greenburgh, mount vernon, new rochelle, peekskill, tarrytown, and white plains. During fy17, westcops caps supported nearly 27,257 residents in westchester, putnam and rockland with a variety of services. The caps support community level programs for lower income residents across a wide variety of issues, including after-school and summer activities for children, food pantries, employment & training programs, immigration rights, tenant/housing advocacy, bi-lingual/esl services, health insurance assistance, gently used clothes and furniture, tax assistance, home energy assistance, senior services, financial literacy, and computer/technology training.

supportive services for veteran families supportive services for veteran families (ssvf) was launched by the us department of veterans affairs in 2011 and is aimed at promoting housing stability among very low-income veteran families who reside in or are transitioning to permanent housing. Westcop is a ssvf grantee, and as such, provides supportive services including health care, daily living, financial planning, transportation, legal, child care and housing counseling services to approximately 402 eligible veterans households in westchester, putnam, rockland, dutchess, orange and ulster counties.

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