Prevention & Early Intervention: Counties Making a Difference
When I became CSAC President last year, I wanted to emphasize the important role that prevention and early intervention can play in improving outcomes in the work that we do. As a Contra Costa County Supervisor for nearly 16 years, I understand how County services can dramatically improve the lives of Californians. What I’ve enjoyed most about being a Supervisor is that I’m able to make a real difference in improving the quality of life in the community that I serve.
My experience has taught me that investing in the right program at the right time not only helps people today, it also saves money for the County and the taxpayer down the road. That’s why I wanted to draw attention to great programs that are making a difference by getting out in front of an issue or problem.
Programs aimed at prevention and early intervention are a good return on our investment. Whether it’s fighting childhood obesity, giving teens a safe and enriching place to go after school, or simply fixing a bridge before a small pothole leads to failure, these are examples of county programs where a relatively small investment in prevention and early intervention can save millions of dollars down the line. And they also can have a profound positive impact on individual people.
So I am very pleased to introduce you to a video series that CSAC has produced, focused on the concept of prevention and early intervention. Over the next month, CSAC will release five video stories that showcase individual programs that embody prevention and early intervention. From an Orange County anti-gang initiative, a childhood obesity prevention program in Santa Clara, a suicide prevention task force in Tulare/Kings, a bridge repair program in Siskiyou, and providing an enriching safe haven for youth in my own Contra Costa County, these programs are saving money and improving lives.
CSAC will also release videos looking at several county programs in four different subject areas — the Environment, Human Services, Administration of Justice, and Health Services. The programs featured in these compilations are also based on the theme of prevention and early intervention.
I hope you’ll watch these videos as CSAC rolls them out over the next month. The individual programs are inspiring, the counties and people that make them work represent some of the best and brightest, and together, they make a strong case for why we should invest in prevention and early intervention. It’s an old saying, but it really does hold true—an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.