about us

Whatcom Family & Community Network is a private, 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization, incorporated in Washington State.

mission and purpose

WFCN’s purpose is to build the capacity of communities and organizations in Whatcom County to support children, youth and families so that they can develop the skills and opportunities they need to lead healthy productive lives.

WFCN aims to prevent child abuse and neglect, youth substance abuse and violence, and to support school success through community change and capacity building efforts.

three words that describe WFCN

Human Pulse at the Resilience Summit, 2016

connection

Relationships and collaboration are at the heart of all our work. We believe community “change happens at the speed of trust” (Covey, S., 2006). To care about one another authentically is critical to create compassionate communities. We must know one another to move empathy to action.  Connected families and communities care for all members and we surround one another at all times–in adversity and celebration.  When people and neighborhoods are connected, children thrive.  “There is no such thing as other people’s children.  They are all our children” (Vu Le, personal communication, February 11, 2017).

resilience

(WFCN was one of the proud sponsors of the Movement Performance of Airings: Voices of Our Youth, 2016, Photography by Nolan McNally Performers Evyn Bartlett, Cara Congelli, Yuki Matsukura, and Ethan Riggs )

In the face of exposure to significant adversity (trauma),” resilience is the capacity of individuals [and communities] to navigate their way to the all the resources needed to sustain well-being. Resilience is the capacity, individually and collectively, to negotiate for these resources to be provided in culturally meaningful ways” that create hope to move beyond human hurt in healthy and healing ways (Ungar, M., n.d.).  WFCN believes in building and inspiring resilience through community building.  When individuals, families, neighborhood and cities are protected by healthy communities and environments, each has a better chance of reaching their highest human potential.

prevention

WFCN aims to build communities of healthy, happy children, adolescents, families and neighbors. Health and well-being are the end result of all we do. We recognize that high exposure to Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) statistically indicate higher risks for substance use, struggle to regulate emotion leading to destructive or violent behavior, and challenge to engage in healthy, safe relationships. Trauma gets embedded into our biology. Our physical, mental and spiritual well-being suffers long-term after high exposure to toxic stress. WFCN and partners in the Whatcom Prevention Coalition focus on “downstream” environmental change strategies to prevent early-on exposure to childhood trauma and to increase healthier response to them, when they are faced. We form coalitions, networks and collaborations to positively impact behaviors such as youth substance use, violence, suicide, unintended pregnancy, and distracted driving.

2016 value of volunteers and network partnerships

PRICELESS, OF COURSE!!

  • total in-kind volunteer hours= 4,150.5 hours
  • 2015 value of a volunteer hour = $23.56, according to The Independent Sector
  • total value of volunteer hours=$=$97,785.78