In 1998, Californians voted to dedicate tobacco taxes to local health and education programs for young children ages 0-5 which created First 5 commissions in each county across the state. First 5 funding for children’s programs is based entirely on local planning and decision-making specific to families’ needs in the county and not on state mandates.
Research shows that a child’s brain develops most dramatically during the first five years of life. During this critical period, a window of opportunity exists to help shape how a child’s brain matures and to lay the foundation for all of the years that follow.
While the early period in children’s development is absolutely critical to their future success, it is also where public investments are lowest.
FIRST 5 provides all children ages 0-5 with programs and services that ensure children are born and remain healthy, receive more from their education, and become productive adults.
FIRST 5 Santa Clara County (FIRST 5) is making a difference for our local children by investing millions of Proposition 10 tobacco tax money each year towards effective programs in health, education, family and community services.
FIRST 5 is committed to achieving real and sustainable results towards the successful future of young children and their families.
It is the intent of the Children and Families Act of 1998 to facilitate the creation and implementation of an integrated, comprehensive, and collaborative system of information and services to enhance optimal early childhood development and to ensure that children are ready to enter school.