Families enjoyed an afternoon of clear skies and warm weather at the 2nd annual Day of the Child resource fair on April 12th. Hosted by JUSD’s Parent Involvement Community Outreach Department (P.I.C.O.), the event provided resources for JUSD families and the community.
P.I.C.O. made the event their own after adopting the resource fair from the Rubidoux Family Resource Center, which previously hosted a similar event. In honor of the Day of the Child, this year’s event had local organizations present with fun activities, free food, entertainment, and the opportunity to win raffle prizes.
The Day of the Child is commemorated every year on April 30th to honor children for their innocence and role in their families. Originating in Mexico and celebrated in the United States, children are seen as the most important members of our society. P.I.C.O. ensures that by advocating and strengthening the connection between families and the community, children are supported.
Chris Mercado, a social worker at P.I.C.O., organized this year’s event and made it larger with 35 vendors compared to the 23 vendors at last year’s event. The fair included organizations that best benefit the health and well-being of Jurupa families.
Riverside University Health System, First 5 Riverside, and Reach Out Jurupa Valley were among the 35 vendors that were at the fair. While parents gathered information from the local vendor’s booths, children were able to participate in their hands-on activities. The booths had crafts and games including teeth brushing simulations, spinning wheels for prizes, and face painting. Students reveled in the fun while learning about healthy living.
“The goal is really just to bring awareness, to show the community that there are resources available out there,” said Mr. Mercado. “There are organizations that are willing to help.” Bringing these Riverside County organizations and services together all in one place makes it more accessible for families to receive the assistance they need, he added.
Many families attended the event to learn more about the specific services the participating organizations offer. “P.I.C.O. is really just the middle organization that brings outside community organizations into the district,” said Chris about P.I.C.O.’s work for the community. They operate to provide families with the necessary instruments to succeed and grow outside of academics.
Performances by Rubidoux High School’s Ballet Folklorico and band kept the event focused on celebrating children. The students showcased their talent to a captivated audience. The Folklorico dancers’ skirts moving with every spin had both children and adults just as excited.
In an afternoon with various organizations, amusement, and delicious food, adults, and children all got something out of the resource fair. Families walked away with new resources and the knowledge that P.I.C.O. and JUSD will be there to help support their whole child.