Activities and Committees

People working together in order to create a broad based movement to address poverty in the county. 

Convening & Events Committee

The Ensuring Opportunity Campaign Convening & Events committee is exploring potential follow-up events to the successful Ensuring Opportunity convening held on May 16.  Recognizing the importance of communicating to convening participants and other anti-poverty stakeholders, we are exploring a variety of campaign communication strategies including conference calls, webinars, newsletters, additional convenings, etc. (This update is one of our first communication vehicles!) We welcome additional committee members with interest or expertise in communications or event planning. If you’re interested, contact Fran Biderman at 925-771-7331 or

The Multi-Faith ACTION Coalition

The Multi-Faith ACTION Coalition is building a strong coalition of committed activists and volunteers from congregations throughout the county. The Coalition has established five active work groups to focus respectively on jobs, food security, housing, health and education. These work groups are focusing on how to address the structural issues that impact poverty and to identify and advocate for policy-oriented solutions. They have been working to increase faith-based participation from across all regions of the county, and have presented their work in front of the county Board of Supervisors. For more information, contact Jasmine Tarkoff at 925-765-0832 or


Zero: 2016 is a national campaign coordinated by Community Solutions to house all homeless veterans by the end of 2015, and all people who are chronically homeless by 2016. When people become homeless in our communities we can provide immediate and long-term solutions if we focus on providing permanent housing rather than short-term housing or aid without housing. The Contra Costa Zero: 2016 campaign is committed to meeting monthly goals for housing veterans and people who are chronically homeless. Each month, new targets are established based on the total placements remaining and length of time left to meet the final placement goals. For more information, or to get involved, email or call 925-313-7700.


A  CalFreshPartner committee has been meeting for the past year to strategize how to increase local CalFresh enrollment, with a goal of enrolling at least 75% of all residents who are eligible for CalFresh. The committee includes representatives from the county Employment and Human Services Dept. (EHSD), the Food Bank of Contra Costa & Solano, FESP, the Multi-Faith Action Coalition, and the Contra Costa Crisis Center and 211. EHSD has committed to hiring more eligibility workers to get new CalFresh applicants quickly enrolled. A pilot partnership between the Food Bank and EHSD will help streamline and improve the enrollment process for community residents and connect them to needed food resources.  The Multi-Faith ACTION Coalition and the Report Card committee are both supporting this effort as well.  For more information, contact Caitlin Sly, 

Living Wage 

As a follow-up to the Ensuring Opportunity convening, several campaign representatives met with county Supervisor John Gioia on July 9 to explore the idea developing a campaign to increase the minimum wage in Contra Costa.   A small exploratory working group has been formed to identify relevant stakeholders and craft a strategy. To learn more, contact Fran Biderman, 925-771-7331,

FESP’s Policy/Revisioning Community committee

On July 17, FESP sponsored a training on movement building by the Movement Strategy Center. FESP also plans to send out a survey to local service providers and advocates that will inform the development of a Policy Toolkit. The purpose of the survey is to solicit input from public and private providers (including FESP members, Human Service Alliance members, and those who attended the Ensuring Opportunity convening and/or the recent movement building training). Our goal is to dig deeper to understand what providers view as the main structural issues contributing to poverty and the best ways for communicating policy actions to providers and to their constituents. A separate survey may be developed to secure additional constituent input. For more information, 925-771-7331,

Tri-Valley Anti-Poverty Collaborative

A multi-year awareness and poverty reduction initiative has been formed to bring more attention and resources to address the hidden poverty found in the Tri-Valley area of Alameda and Contra Costa counties. Representatives from Kaiser Permanente, East Bay Leadership Council, Hacienda Business Owners Association, the East Bay Community Foundation and United Way of the Bay Area are sponsoring this effort. To learn more, contact Kristi Miller, 925-980-2670, .

LINC – Local Integrated Networks of Care

Local Integrated Networks of Care (LINC) is a committee of community leaders from the non-profit and public sectors partnering to improve services to the consumer through collaboration and transparency. The objective is to improve communication between public agencies and non-profits to determine if there are overlaps in services and to share resources (volunteers, funding, etc.) as needed. Initially, a model program in Concord is being developed that will support the needs of the local community via a tiered support system that can later be expanded from city to city. For more information contact Pamela Singh,, 925-389-9866.


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