In Sutter County, CSAC delivers backpacks to ease transition for foster youth

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Board of Supervisors Chair Dan Flores (third from left), Health and Human Services Director Nancy O’Hara, Deputy Health and Human Services Director Lisa Soto, and staff from Sutter County’s Social Services Division were on hand Friday when Graham Knaus (fifth from left), Deputy Executive Director of the California State Association of Counties, delivered 25 backpacks for foster youth.

The primary purpose of the California State Association of Counties is to represent county government before the California Legislature, administrative agencies and the federal government. CSAC places a strong emphasis on educating the public about the value and need for county programs and services.

But CSAC, which traces its roots to 1895, often steps beyond its primary role to provide continuing education for elected and non-elected county staff, and other creative ways to assist counties.

At its recent Annual Meeting in Sacramento,  CSAC decided to include a service project: filling backpacks with items for foster children in the Sacramento region. CSAC had a table set up with backpacks and six different groups of items—for three age ranges and for boys and girls. Items included t-shirts and sweats, pajamas, leggings, pens and pencils, small flashlights and stuffed animals—even earbuds and gift cards for the older kids. CSAC asked attendees to take a few minutes to fill a backpack or two with these items—and they did not disappoint. Together as a county family, they created almost 500 backpacks filled with the things that can help make an abrupt transition just a little easier.

On Friday, Sutter County Board of Supervisors Chair Dan Flores and Health and Human Services Director Nancy O’Hara were on hand when CSAC Deputy Executive Director Graham Knaus delivered 25 backpacks to Sutter County’s Social Services department.

The service event was made possible by the generous sponsorships of the CSAC Finance Corporation, Kaiser, and the Stuart Foundation, and volunteers from the Institute for Local Government.

For more about this special project, read the story by Graham Knaus: http://www.counties.org/county-voice/backpacks-foster-youth-making-little-magic-csacs-annual-meeting