GOLD2022

VALLEY ACHIEVEMENT CENTER

aka V.A.C.   |   Bakersfield, CA   |  www.autism-vac.org

Mission

Our mission is to empower individuals on the autism spectrum, or with other developmental disabilities, to achieve the highest quality of life.

Ruling year info

1999

Principal Officer

Laura Williams

Main address

1601 New Stine Road, Suite 240

Bakersfield, CA 93309 USA

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EIN

95-4638631

NTEE code info

Specialized Education Institutions/Schools for Visually or Hearing Impaired, Learning Disabled (B28)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Basic Education

Our major programs include academics, functional living skills, job training and placement, behavioral skills, social skills, supported living services. Currently, we serve more than 80 autistic children in Kern County.

Population(s) Served
People with intellectual disabilities
Academics

Our After School Programs serve children ages 6 - 22. This program helps children improve adaptive, communication and social skills, as well as decrease maladaptive behaviors.

Population(s) Served
People with intellectual disabilities
Non-adult children

One-to-one instruction in the afternoon to develop communication, functional living, socialization, adaptive behavior, and motor skills.

Population(s) Served
People with intellectual disabilities
Non-adult children

Helps children to improve communication and social skills and to decrease challenging behaviors, to allow the student to succeed in his or her regular environment.

Population(s) Served
People with intellectual disabilities
Children and youth

Provides on-site programming to adults starting at age 18. The program provides individuals with the knowledge and skills to improve functional living skills, including daily living skills, proactive strategies for behavior management, self-help skills, community and environmental awareness, self-advocacy, and relational building skills.

Population(s) Served
People with intellectual disabilities
Adults

This program provides individual and group supported employment. The individual program helps individuals obtain and successfully maintain employment. Group supported employment provides employment opportunities for adults who lack the skills for individual employment, with goals to foster skills needed to transition to individual supported employment.

Population(s) Served
People with intellectual disabilities
Adults

Provides in-home services for individuals who are in an independent living environment. Services include assistance with daily living skills, money management, self-advocacy, emergency response, safety awareness, transportation, and other services that allow the individual to reside in his or her home.

Population(s) Served
People with intellectual disabilities
Adults

Valley Achievement Center's (VAC's) Paid Internship Program (PIP) provides adults with autism and other developmental disabilities with paid internships in the community to help clients learn important job skills and to encourage employers in the community to hire individuals with disabilities for ongoing regular employment with their company. Following a one-year paid internship, the company will have the opportunity to hire the individual as a regular paid employee.

Population(s) Served
People with disabilities

Where we work

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    Valley Achievement Center serves children and adults diagnosed with autism and other developmental disabilities through a variety of behavioral, adaptive skills, living skills, and employment supportive programs.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    A recent example of a change that Valley Achievement Center (VAC) has made in response to feedback from individuals served by VAC is the addition of the Paid Internship Program (PIP) for adult clients interested in employment in the community. For adult clients who were having difficulty obtaining employment in the community because of a lack of prior employment history or underdeveloped job skills, PIP provides adults with disabilities a one year paid internship with an employer in the community. At the conclusion of the one year paid internship, the employer will be able to hire the individual as a regular employee.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    Our staff, Our board, Our community partners,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    Valley Achievement Center (VAC) provides highly individualized services to children and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities. In providing these services, VAC staff work closely and communicate regularly with the client, the client's parents/caretakers, and others who form the client's "circle of support" to ensure the client receives the services and supports the client wants and needs. VAC adjusts such services and supports based on feedback from the client and others who support the client.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback,

Financials

VALLEY ACHIEVEMENT CENTER
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

VALLEY ACHIEVEMENT CENTER

Board of directors
as of 09/30/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Shelton Stevens

David Diosi

Retired

Shelton Stevens

Stevens Trucking

Ann Marie Duquette

Retired School Nurse

Russ Allred

Sunbelt Business Brokers & Associates

Steven Rodriguez

Parsons

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 9/30/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability

Equity strategies

Last updated: 09/30/2022

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.