Children First / Communities In Schools


Children First/Communities In Schools addresses the challenges to academic achievement that children not born to privilege experience by empowering K-6 students and surrounding them with a community of support in school, after school, and in their homes and communities. We work to strengthen relationships with children and families by keeping students on track for academic success while using public policy to build a more family-friendly, affordable Buncombe County. 

Our Family Resource Center at Emma has been a hub for the families in the community. Families are able to access resources through a food pantry, SNAP applications, emergency financial assistance, community referrals, and parent workshops. Visit our website to learn more about our Family Resource Center

Our Advocacy Team and Success Equation initiative supports collaborative public policy advocacy to benefit children and families in Buncombe County. We believe that the future looks brighter when children start their lives healthy and ready to learn, have their basic needs met, and live in supported and connected families. We host regular Success Equation meetings attended by ally organizations and community members. Together we identify and prioritize public policies and investments at local, state, and federal levels to create our annual policy agenda. We advocate for policies that expand opportunities for child and family resiliency, stability, and health, and span across three key areas: early childhood, family economic stability, and family supports. Visit our website to view current policy agenda.

Find us online at

CFCIS is excited to join this partnership with United for Youth because we strongly believe collaborative efforts from all parts of the community being essential for all children to thrive in their schooling and beyond.


As a member of the United for Youth Network, we commit to:

  • Continue carrying out the mission of Children First/Communities In Schools to empower children and their families to meet their full potential through advocacy, education, and services, and as the local Communities In Schools affiliate to surround students with a community of supports, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.
  • Continue implementation of the national Communities In Schools evidence-based model within school and community sites where Student Support Specialists are assigned.
  • Focus on sustainability of existing sites and exploration of future expansion to directly serve more students and families.
  • Continue advocacy efforts for family-friendly policies independently and collaboratively.
  • Continue representation, involvement, and leadership in this collective effort.
  • Share learning opportunities and encourage participation of Children First/Communities In Schools staff.