County Examples

Survivor Training and Empowerment-Utilizing your Potential (STEP-UP)

Alameda County, Calif.

Survivor Training and Empowerment-Utilizing your Potential (STEP-UP)/ STEP-UP 2 WORK is a training and empowerment program for women who are survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, as well as women diverted from the criminal justice system after an allegation of public assistance fraud. The programs empower women with the personal, professional, and financial skills to begin reconstructing their lives and the lives of their children and to ultimately break the cycle of violence and poverty. STEP-UP is offered in both Spanish and English. STEP-UP is a seven-week financial literacy, employment, and empowerment program that also provides the opportunity to discuss the dynamics of domestic violence and its impact on families and communities. Each module offers empowerment sessions, professional development, English-as-a-Second-Language, financial literacy, computer basics, job search and interviewing techniques. After successfully completing STEP-UP, each woman is eligible to apply to the STEP-UP 2 TO WORK program. This is a six-month long program that requires 20 hours per week of class time focused on professional skill building. During and after training, students begin earning income by working on client projects in a safe, supportive, and nondiscriminatory environment.

Ms. Myrna Lopez 
Intergovernmental Affairs and Civic Engagement

About 100 Brilliant Ideas at Work

Counties play an essential role in keeping America’s communities healthy, vibrant and safe. With public and private sector partners, we pursue innovative approaches to advance public health and well-being, protect public safety and foster economic strength and resiliency. Counties anticipate and adapt to challenges by thinking outside the box and demonstrating local leadership that makes a difference in people’s lives.

Under the leadership of NACo Immediate Past President Bryan Desloge, NACo embarked on an initiative to identify and share 100 examples of visionary county leadership that results in improving residents’ quality of life. Through this initiative, NACo worked with county leaders and partners to share best practices that bolster our nation’s ability to thrive county by county.

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