Proposition 10

On November 1998, California voters passed the California Children and Families Act of 1998. The act levies a tax on cigarettes and other tobacco products with the intent to provide funding for early childhood development programs, in addition to establishing a State Commission and local County Commissions for this purpose. 

First 5 CA




County Logo


Featured Program Vignette: Early Literacy Project

Above you will see some fairly determined families engaged in early literacy sessions hosted by the Neighborhood House of Calexico Early Literacy Program.

If you are a parent of a child ages 0-5, or know someone with a young child, that is interested in enrolling their child in an early literacy program, well think no more.  Studies highly support the fact that meaningful outcomes are achieved when families begin reading and introducing preliteracy activities to the child at an early age.  Even the youngest babies will gradually come to associate books with the warmth of being held by a nurturing parent and the soothing sound of the mother’s or father’s voice. Families that learn strategies the help to establish reading time as enjoyable and fun are essentially working to help jump-start a lifetime of reading, learning, and academic success.  Numerous studies have identified the many benefits of early literacy development; benefits that not only prepare a child for kindergarten, but will affect their literary success through the full K-12 educational experience and even carry on into adulthood. The Imperial County Children and Families First Commission would like to encourage families to take advantage any literacy activity, such as enrolling in the Neighborhood House of Calexico Early Literacy Project.

The Neighborhood House of Calexico Early Literacy Program is working to support families through a four-component family literacy program designed to impact the school readiness of children, and focus on increasing the time families spend reading with their children. Through the support of trained literacy specialists, this Project provides literacy services to families with children 0-5 years of age utilizing curriculum materials based on the Latino Family Literacy Project.  These services include a six-session early literacy program that focuses on the parent and child.  Parents are instructed on techniques designed to develop skills that are important when reading to their child and that encourage school readiness.  During the six sessions, participating families are involved in the Parent and Child Together time (PACT time) activity – this is dedicated time where parents specifically learn techniques to help their children succeed in school and life.  Parents receive instruction on such topics as: nonverbal communication, family dynamics, nutrition and other topics of interest.  In addition, parents are assisted and referred to community agencies to for support and in order reach their personal, professional and/or educational objectives, and families are encouraged to enroll at their local library branch for library services. Furthermore, at the completion of the sixth session, children receive an “Imagination is Reading” kit that includes a book, colors, scissors, and craft supplies.  Project literacy specialists recruit participants/families interested in enrolling in family literacy sessions through community resource fairs, as well as, parent meetings at local preschools. The Neighborhood House of Calexico reports that literacy specialists identify the clients’ needs at the time of enrollment and refer/link clients to community resources/agencies based on their identified or expressed needs during the course of the six literacy sessions.

The Neighborhood House of Calexico Early Literacy Project collaborates with other agencies in Imperial County that target the same populations such as the El Centro Elementary School District’s FACT Center, Brawley Elementary School District, Imperial County Office of Education, and many other agencies and organizations. Currently, the Project is particularly working to reduce barriers and increase services to under-served/isolated communities, such as, Calipatria and Seeley.  In addition, the Early Literacy Program staff address the need for families that do not have access to transportation services by providing family literacy services through home visits or another location that would be suitable to the family, for example at the local public library.  For more information please contact Project Coordinator, Beatriz Renteria at (760) 357-6875.

For a listing of other Proposition 10 funded Projects featured by the Commission click here.