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August 8, 2022   •   News  

SAFE Grants $10,000 to Help Kids in Foster Care Moving to New Homes

Folsom, Calif. – Aug. 9, 2022 – SAFE Credit Union is committing $10,000 to help area children and teens living in foster care with mental health services provided by Stanford Sierra Youth & Family Services throughout Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer and Yolo counties.

The grant will be used to offer a continuum of care to local youths living in foster care – many of whom are recovering from childhood trauma – seeking and moving into permanent homes.

“Our goal is to help get foster youth into permanent and loving homes, and to support them along the way as well as after as they settle into their new lives,” says Laura Heintz, Chief Executive Officer of Stanford Sierra Youth & Families. “This grant from SAFE Credit Union will help us meet their emotional needs during this process.”

 Osorios family photoStanford Sierra Youth & Families 2021 Family of the Year" the Osorios family.

The grant is one of two SAFE Credit Union awarded in the second quarter 2022 to organizations helping to ensure the health of residents living in the Sacramento region. SAFE also awarded $20,000 to HOPE Counseling Center to provide counseling services to those with and newly experiencing a loss of sight.

In 2021, Stanford Sierra Youth & Families helped nearly 6,000 youth and family members in Northern California, through their programs.

“We are so humbled to provide funding to help foster youth in our surrounding communities feel secure in finding a new home,” says SAFE Community Impact Manager Amanda Merz. “The work done by Stanford Sierra Youth & Families is unprecedented.”

There are an estimated 3,500 foster youth living in Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer and Yolo counties, according to the California Child Welfare Indicators Project at UC Berkeley.

Heintz says foster youth who join permanent families are much more likely to graduate from high school and earn a college degree. And less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol, commit crimes or experience homelessness.

“As young adults, foster youth who join permanent families earn about three times as much as their peers in foster care who age out of the system without a family,” Heintz says. “These positive outcomes greatly improve the lives of the youth themselves, and they benefit the neighborhoods they live in too—through a broader tax base, less dependence on public assistance, and lower incidences of crime and substance abuse. That benefits everyone.”

Laura Heintz photoLaura Heintz, Chief Executive Officer for Stanford Sierra Youth & Families

The organization also provides services focused on behavioral and mental health, substance use treatment and prevention, juvenile justice prevention, and mentoring.

SAFE annually awards $120,000 in grants in four phases focusing on its three pillars of philanthropy: veterans, healthcare, and education. For more information on SAFE Credit Union’s grants program, go to

If you are interested in becoming a resource (i.e. foster, kinship, or adoptive) family and opening your heart and home to a youth in foster care, contact Stanford Sierra Youth & Families at (916) 344-0199 or visit their website at to learn more today.

About SAFE

SAFE Credit Union has made members an integral part of its vision since 1940. Over the years the credit union has kept the focus on what really matters, putting members first, a formula that has seen SAFE grow into a leading financial institution in Northern California with $4.5 billion in assets and about 242,000 members. SAFE crafts every cutting-edge product and sterling service with members’ needs foremost in mind. In addition to banking services conveniently available through online, chat, mobile, or phone options, SAFE offers in-person services for members and small businesses at service centers across the Greater Sacramento region. SAFE is a not-for-profit, state-chartered credit union with membership open to businesses and individuals living or working in Sacramento, Placer, Yolo, El Dorado, Sutter, Butte, Nevada, Solano, San Joaquin, Contra Costa, Yuba, Amador, and Alameda counties. Insured by NCUA.

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