Reflecting on a Five Year Anniversary
This week marks my five year anniversary leading IVYP. Those five years passed in the blink of an eye. The children who were students in our Children’s Center five years ago have all graduated. In January 2018, our community was recovering from the devastating debris flow. Five years later, we are grappling with recovery from floods.
I’m someone who is always looking forward. I imagine the future I want to see and work to get there. The problem with always looking ahead, is that you never arrive. There is always something new to achieve. On anniversaries, it can be useful to look back to see how far we’ve come.
In the past five years, IVYP doubled its budget and impact. We’ve nurtured more than 500 babies, toddlers, and preschoolers. In the past five years, our Family Resource Center provided more than 45,000 services to more than 6,700 individuals. More than 21,000 people received food through our Healthy Food distribution and our emergency food pantry. We’ve hosted candidates’ forums and town halls, introducing our community to their elected officials. We gathered partners to help our community be more resilient and connected through our Goleta Valley Partners network. We spoke out about systemic racism and systemic poverty, and board and staff continue to explore our own biases. We supported children and families through a pandemic.
Whew! We could not do this work without you. Thank you to each one of you who made a donation in December. Please don’t stop! Your gifts enable us to meet the needs of children and families, even those we can’t anticipate. Thank you so much for believing in us. I can’t wait to see what the next five years brings!
Executive Director, Isla Vista Youth Projects