First 5 in the News

Recent media coverage of First 5 programs, people, and activities around the state.

First Five California Programs at Risk as Revenue Plummets

KQED / February 9, 2024

Programs dedicated to the well being of California’s youngest residents are facing major cuts. That’s because a ban on the sale of flavored tobacco products sharply lowered revenue that’s supposed to fund first five California and the early childhood services.
Fewer smokers in California is impacting programs that help kids

CBS News Sacramento / February 8, 2024

The number of people who smoke cigarettes in California has fallen dramatically in the last few decades, but that is now creating some budget problems across the state.
First 5 leaders call for $100 million investment in early childhood

Lake County Record-Bee / February 8, 2024

Proposed one-time funding set to alleviate cuts and ensure sustained services for California’s youngest children and families
California early education advocates rally for funding boost

EdSource / February 7, 2023

Without this funding, advocates say, programs supporting tens of thousands of young children, many of whom are low-income, face cutbacks.
First 5 Riverside County partners with Riverside University Health System & Baby2Baby to provide over 300 car seats to families
NBC Palm Springs / December 4, 2023
The partnership between F5RC and RUHS ensured opportunities for families to receive training, both virtual and in-person, on how to safely install the seats.
First 5 San Diego - Early Childhood Development Funding

ABC San Diego / December 1, 2023

Locally, First 5 San Diego has been working diligently on alternate funding sources and advocating for policy changes to strengthen the early childhood education systems of care…

Hefty cigarette taxes cut smoking big-time. But there’s a downside for children

Los Angeles Times / September 20, 2023

As cigarette consumption declined over time, so did the funds available for early childhood programs. Turns out penalizing smokers for their habits had unintended consequences.

First 5 Monterey County

KSBW / September 6, 2023

In Monterey County, there are only enough licensed child care spaces to serve 26 percent of the children under five. When you include working families, the number drops to 17 percent.

First 5 Contra Costa

Fox KTVU / August 3, 2023

Watch as Fox KTVU sits down with Ruth Fernandez, the Executive Director of First 5 Contra Costa, to learn how they are making a lasting impact on children’s lives.

Headline Humboldt: July 28th, 2023
KEET / July 28, 2023

Executive Director Mary Ann Hanson from First 5 Humboldt talks about the important work for local kids and how state sin tax funding is decreasing, putting their programs at risk.

California’s Reduction in Tobacco Use Slashed Revenue for First 5 Humboldt, Forcing Cuts to Family Services
Lost Coast Communications / July 24, 2023
A recent CalMatters story highlighted the funding challenges facing First 5 organizations throughout California, and we at First 5 Humboldt wanted to share some local context about how declining revenue is affecting us here in Humboldt County, and how we are adapting in response.
Tobacco ban hurting Silicon Valley early education groups

San Jose Spotlight / July 21, 2023

“A ban on flavored tobacco is expected to drain funds for Silicon Valley organizations that serve low-income families.”
Californians are smoking less: Why that’s a problem for these early childhood services

Cal Matters / July 18, 2023

“A new ban on flavored tobacco products is accelerating a decline in nicotine tax revenue that funds California’s early childhood services. Some programs are already making cuts.”

We need to address child care shortages now

The Daily Journal / July 13, 2023

“Child care shortages are an all-too-familiar problem in the United States, and San Mateo County is no exception.”

Special guests share books, love of reading at area schools
VC Star / May 7, 2023
“Studies have proven that when you talk, read and sing to children from birth on, you promote and support early language and literacy development,” First 5 said in a news release.
Report finds only 1 in 5 Sonoma children ready for kindergarten

CBS / April 27, 2023

“Communities all over the state are reporting impacts on enrollment and test scores for school-age children in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, but Sonoma County has released a sobering, detailed report focusing on kindergarteners there and how they are faring post-pandemic.”
Family support program First 5 First Steps enrolling 100 more families in South Bay region

KPBS / February 10, 2022

“First 5 First Steps has been helping families across the county since 2013, and is a program of the San Diego Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and First 5 San Diego.”

San Mateo County child care industry recovering

The San Mateo Daily Journal / February 9, 2022

“Kitty Lopez, the co-chair of Build Up San Mateo County and executive director of First 5 San Mateo County, said industry leaders and local officials had been meeting weekly for 18 months to discuss the state of child care in the county…”

First 5: Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, California’s First Surgeon General is a True Champion for Children and Families in the State

Business Wire / February 4, 2022

“California’s first Surgeon General, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, whose departure was recently announced by Governor Gavin Newsom, continues to be a champion for children and families in the state. The First 5 Association, First 5 California and First 5 LA recognize Dr. Burke Harris for her commitment to ensuring children thrive emotionally, physically and mentally in safe, stable and nurturing environments.”
This story also appears in Yahoo! Finance, The Joplin Globe, and Citizen Tribune.
Diaper Project receives sizable grant

The Union / January 31, 2022

“The Nevada County Diaper Project has announced their partnership with First 5 Nevada County Commission through a generous grant received from the Nevada County Housing and Community Services Division. This funding will enhance The Nevada County Diaper Project’s reach to families in need of diapers and wipes throughout the region.”
Tiffany Alva from First 5 Orange County to speak at the February Cypress Chamber Networking Breakfast

OC Breeze / January 28, 2022

“The Cypress Chamber of Commerce will host Tiffany Alva, Government Affairs Director for First 5 Orange County as our guest speaker at our February Networking Breakfast… The theme of her program for the Chamber of Commerce is that ‘Orange County’s child care industry is the workforce behind the workforce.'”
Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan Provides $520,000 Support for Maternal/Infant Health Programs in Los Angeles and San Diego

PR Newswire / January 25, 2022

“First 5 LA, an independent public agency that supports the safe and healthy development of young children and their families in Los Angeles County, and For The Village, a nonprofit community organization that provides free doula services and education for families in the San Diego County area, have each received community investments totaling $520,000 from Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan.”
First 5 California Welcomes Lori Risso

Yahoo! Finance / January 18, 2022

“The California Children and Families Commission, also known as First 5 California, welcomed the appointment of its newest commissioner, Lori Risso, Principal of August Elementary School in the Stockton Unified School District.”

edhat Santa Barbara / January 17, 2022

“The First 5 Santa Barbara County Commission for Children and Families (First 5 SBC) is offering grants to nonprofits, schools and institutes of higher learning that serve children birth to five, their families and those who care for them.”
First 5 Lake County welcomes new executive director

Lake County Record-Bee / January 15, 2022

“First 5 Lake County is pleased to welcome Samantha Bond as its new executive director. Bond comes to Lake County after working at First 5 Mendocino County for nearly five years as the public relations manager.”

Free tuition offered to attract preschool teachers and staff

KPBS / January 14, 2022

“‘The first five years of a child’s life are crucial in their development and the more opportunities they have to be in high-quality education settings the better they will be prepared for kindergarten and their future,’ said Alethea Arguilez, Executive Director of First 5 San Diego.”

The right priorities? Reactions to Gov. Newsom's 2022-23 early ed budget

EdSource / January 13, 2022

This story features a quote from First 5 Association Interim Executive Director Deborah Reidy Kelch about First 5’s reaction to Governor Newsom’s proposed budget.

First 5: The Governor Unveiled the 2022-23 Budget Proposal Which Serves as a Framework to Advance the Health and Well-being of California’s Youngest Children

Business Wire / January 12, 2022

“The First 5 Association of California, First 5 California and First 5 LA welcome the governor’s continued focus on making programs, services and resources more equitable, to ensure all children and families have the safe and nurturing environments they need to thrive.”

Budget surplus presents opportunity to invest in families, children

CalMatters / January 10, 2022

First 5 LA Executive Director, Kim Belshé penned this op-ed about the value of investing in services that promote optimal child development, maternal health and family stability in light of California’s unprecedented budget surplus.

Click below for an archive of older First 5 News Clips