Purposes: Catalyst for Children (CFC) develops and disseminates educational materials concerning issues affecting the welfare of children and youth with the intent of stimulating behavior, policies and programs that contribute to improvements in their overall well-being. CFC’s goal is to improve the education, health and general welfare of children, youth and families through educating the public, parents, opinion shapers and policy makers. Our goal is to present balanced, accurate information about issues and describe possible solutions to the wide range of social problems that affect children and youth.

We address a broad range of interrelated issues challenging children, youth and families through research and interviews with the individuals who are facing social problems themselves and their parents, teachers, friends and associates. We hope to engage audiences by making presentations that combine the insights of research with the life stories, voices and photographic images of those at risk. We will, however, work to ensure that presentations are balanced, non-ideological, and fact-based.

While it is expected that many of the issues to be addressed are national in scope, studies will emphasize the problems of children and young people in California, especially Monterey county, a region that exemplifies the diversity of national origin, ethnic backgrounds and income levels that increasingly characterize the demography of the United states.

Issues addressed include those relating to poverty, health, sub-standard housing, environmental hazards, poor nutrition and obesity, early childhood education and education for children and youth, domestic violence, job training, teen pregnancy and the educational and occupational challenges faced by immigrants.

In addition we will provide links to resources for community members to seek help with various social issues.

We are incorporated as a non-profit educational organization in the State of California and have ruling 501 (c)(3) status from the IRS and the equivalent tax-exempt status form the State of California. All contributions to CFC are tax deductible.

CFC's president, Brett Wilbur has an MA in Counseling Psychology from the University of San Francisco, and a BA in English from Montana State University, as well as experience as a reporter, editor, and a professional photographer. Her prior publications have dealt with a broad array of social issues relevant to the welfare of children and youth. They have included articles exploring home schooling, teen sexuality, immigrant populations at risk, disabled adolescents and adults, abused children, the push for a living wage, bilingual education, parenting education and homelessness. In addition, Wilbur has recently been working with the San Francisco Bay Area Heart Gallery and the Monterey County Department of Social Services to help foster children who are in need of placement.

CFC's Secretary-Treasurer, J. Joseph Speidel, MD, MPH is a graduate of Harvard College, Harvard Medical School, the Harvard School of Public Health and is board certified in public health. Dr. Speidel previously directed the US Agency for International Development's program of population and family planning assistance, served as president of Population Action International, and directed the population grants program at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. He is currently a professor at the University of California, San Francisco. He is the author of more that 100 articles and chapters and editor or author of eleven books and monographs on issues relating to public health and population.

CFC Board Members
James Wagoner, Senior Advisor, Advocates for Youth
Kristin A. Moore, Ph.D., Senior Scholar & Senior Program Area Director, Child Trends, Inc.
Barbara Merz, JD