Friday, January 26, 2007

Solano County Listed Among Best Communities for Youth - Again

Solano County Listed Among Best Communities for Youth - Again
By Andrea E. Garcia

FAIRFIELD - A collaboration of community resources and support helped Solano County garner the recognition as one of the "100 Best Communities for Young People" for the second consecutive year.

America's Promise - The Alliance for Youth announced its "100 Best" that honors communities across the country for their commitment to providing healthy, safe and caring environments for young people.

And once again, the county proved the importance that local government and children services place on the youth, their education and well-being.

"As education, local government, service agencies, students and community members came together to share perspectives and develop the proposal, it was clear that the children and youth of our community are a priority," Lisette Estrella-Henderson, director of district and school support for the Solano County Office of Education, said Thursday.

"Selection of Solano County for this award confirms that we are doing a good job of addressing the diversity of needs and interests of our children and providing a wide range of service and opportunities to meet those needs."

More than 1,000 communities in 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands took part in the competition but only 100 communities could fulfill the promises implemented by America's Promise to children - to change the lives of children through caring adults, safe places, a healthy start, effective education and opportunities to help others.

Some of the attributes that lifted Solano County into the top 100 include the academic performance index, which has continued to rise in every school district; children's health coverage in the county, one of the lowest uninsured rates in state; resources for children and their families; programs such as the Boys and Girl's Club; and committed community participation.

"This award highlights how multi-faceted our community is and how many exceptional programs we have in place," said Supervisor Mike Reagan. "This year our education emphasis shines right up there with the health initiatives for children that won us the award last year."

Next year, he added, the county intends to showcase another outstanding component of the community because, he said, this is a team effort.

The Solano County Office of Education submitted the application after assembling a team of educators, county agencies such as Children's Network and Health and Social Services, community members and students working in partnership to raise awareness of the resources, programs, training and opportunities available to the youth of the county.

"We think it is a strong network available in Solano County that helps access services to all children, such as after-school programs, our health services and mental health services for children," said Nola Lionberger, public information officer for the Solano County of Education. "Solano County really has a lot of resources and support for families. We think it really was the whole package that led us to be selected."

Bob Lawton, deputy county administrator, accepted the award on Thursday in Washington D.C. and will return with the plaque on Monday to Solano County.

Reach Andrea E. Garcia at 427-6953 or


Winners of the "100 Best Communities for Young People" by America's Promise - The Alliance for Youth:



Long Beach

Santa Clarita

Georgetown Divide

San Ramon

Solano County

Solano's Got It!

Solano's Got It!
The Best That Northern California Has To Offer.

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