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Meet Carina Martin of A Precious Child in Broomfield

Today we’d like to introduce you to Carina Martin.

Carina, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I founded A Precious Child because I believe that every child deserves the opportunity to thrive, regardless of their parents’ financial situation. As a mother, I understand the desire of every parent to provide their children with the tools and resources they need to succeed. However, I recognized the constraints that financial hardship may put on a parent’s ability to provide their child with all that’s needed to flourish socially and academically. In 2008, I started A Precious Child out of my garage, where I provided basic essentials to 84 families.

In 2019, A Precious Child provided opportunities and resources to more than 48,000 disadvantaged and displaced children and an additional 5,000 adult caregivers. I have dedicated my life to ensuring all children in our community have access to the resources and opportunities they need to thrive. In A Precious Child’s eight-county service area, there are more than 250,000 children living below the Self-Sufficiency Standard who do not have access to the basic essentials they need, such as clothing, toiletries, school supplies, educational supports and extracurricular activities. Each of our programs was developed in direct response to identified needs in the community, which often means supporting families facing abuse, neglect, economic hardship or other difficult life challenges on their paths to self-sufficiency.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Because 2008 was the height of the recession, it was a difficult time to launch a nonprofit. Not only was the need greater due to the financial hardships that families who were previously self-sufficient were suddenly facing, there was less capital support available in the community to invest in new initiatives. I was able to strategically identify community leaders, including now-former Broomfield Chief of Police Tom Deland and Mayor of Broomfield Pat Quinn, who, through their public support, helped to catapult A Precious Child out of my garage and into a physical space that would allow us to serve more children and families in need.

We’d love to hear more about your organization.
A Precious Child provides children in need with opportunities and resources to empower them to achieve their full potential. We envision a future where every child grows up to be a secure, self-reliant, contributing member of their community. We work toward the actualization of the vision through eight impactful programs, as well as case-management services that promote family stability, academic success and social and emotional well-being.

We provide resources such as clothing, coats, shoes, toiletries, home goods, baby gear, diapers, backpacks, school supplies, computers and sports equipment. In addition, we provide access to parenting training about early literacy resources, tutoring and extracurricular activities that are often not available to children faced with their family’s economic hardship.

A Precious Child was founded on the basis of collaboration and today we collaborate with more than 450 Agency Partners including schools, human-service organizations, churches, hospitals, police and fire departments, safe houses and foster-care organizations, among others. A Precious Child supports Agency Partners by filling in gaps in service to provide holistically for children in need and their families.

A Precious Child has signed a formal agreement with every Agency Partner that allows the organization to refer families in need of A Precious Child’s services. This service delivery model is unique because A Precious Child helps build Agency Partners’ capacity. This innovative model also eliminates the need for duplicate program qualification processes that can often be a burden for the client. Families are therefore able to more quickly access what they need when they need it and it promotes a dignified experience for all clients.

My vision for the future is that the impact of A Precious Child continues to grow along with the organization. In May 2018, A Precious Child moved into a new 26,000 sq. ft. headquarters which has allowed us to serve hundreds more families. My vision of a better community expands beyond just A Precious Child’s services, which is why I’m involved in various community initiatives, collaboratives and boards so I can share my vision of how we, as a community, can best serve all families in our eight-county service area. Nobody should go to sleep without having their basic needs met.

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Image Credit:
A Precious Child

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