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The original item was published from 8/29/2017 11:31:20 AM to 8/29/2017 11:35:51 AM.

News Flash


Posted on: August 29, 2017

[ARCHIVED] Cottonwood Cares Program

Cottonwood Cares  Print JPG

“Cottonwood Cares” Encourages a Hand Up, Not a Hand Out. Local Non-Profits and the City of Cottonwood team up to launch this initiative encouraging self-reliance and reduction of enabling environments.

PSA Showcasing Program

What exactly is Cottonwood Cares?

Cottonwood Cares is a community collaboration intended to encourage citizens to give to local social service providers that aid in transitioning those in need out of homelessness rather than to pan-handlers that may use well intended donations to support destructive life-style choices that are harmful to the individual and potentially to the community as well.  

“MATFORCE is honored to be a part of Cottonwood Cares. This project will further our vision of working together to reduce substance abuse in Yavapai County." Merilee Fowler, Executive Director.

The Cottonwood Cares program is both an awareness campaign as well as a conduit for those that want to help those in need by serving as a monetary clearing house in support of local non-profits that have proven track records of helping those in need transition away from homelessness; in most cases through case managed programming. The City has partnered with Habitat for Humanity as the non-profit fiduciary. Other stakeholders include the Cottonwood Chamber of Commerce and MATFORCE. 

“Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity has joined with the City of Cottonwood, the Cottonwood Chamber of Commerce, and MATFORCE because we feel it's important that the community come together to promote awareness for the important mission of the Cottonwood Cares program.”- Tania Simms, Executive Director 


A webpage has been established allowing individuals and businesses to make a tax deductible donation. The stakeholders will periodically release donations to local non-profits through a public application process. Moreover, the stakeholder group will also leverage donations to maintain an appropriate media presence. Both objectives are designed to promote self-reliance and a healthy community, as well as reduce enabling environments that can have tangential connection to crime and/or fear of crime.

“We make an assumption that pan-handling is tied to homelessness and many times it’s not”. “By channeling needed resources to Cottonwood Cares, donors can rest assured their hard-earned money will go to programs that actually help those in need transition away from homelessness.” – Steve Gesell, Cottonwood Chief of Police.    


  • A common desire to promote a healthy community through reduction of adverse impacts of homelessness through support of the City of Cottonwood’s alternative sentencing and resource referral initiative (hereinafter “initiative”).
  • A common desire to support the goals of the City of Cottonwood, which are: promoting self-reliance, reducing homelessness, reducing enabling environments, public education, directed giving campaigns that will support the initiative, and community re- investment.
  • A common desire to support the efforts of community coalitions.

Please visit Cottonwood Cares at and help support solutions, not addictions.

Those wanting Cottonwood Cares (11 x 17) posters for display please visit Verde Valley Habitat for Humanity, Cottonwood Chamber of Commerce or Cottonwood Police Department.

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