Kristina Rivas-Jones has joined the Literacy Council of Bowie and Miller Counties as the Education and Career Coordinator for the 100 Families Alliance, a new program in Texarkana that will help move families from crisis to career. In this position, which was made possible by a grant from the Texas Pioneer Foundation, Rivas-Jones will help men and women in the program connect with workforce and job skills training, explore trade school and higher education opportunities, and find employment with local companies. She also serves as the interim program coordinator.
Rivas-Jones’s career includes more than a decade of experience in higher education, marketing, and healthcare, as well as success as a small business owner. The Texarkana native is in her third semester at Stephen F. Austin University where she is working toward a master’s degree in human sciences with a focus on human development and family studies. She holds a bachelor’s degree in nuclear medicine from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.
Literacy Council Executive Director Jenny Walker said that Rivas-Jones is the perfect addition to the organization’s growing team.
“As the Literacy Council pushes forward its mission to serve our community, Kristina’s experience, as well as her inviting and energetic personality, make her the kind of leader others naturally want to follow,” Walker said. “As we build the 100 Families Alliance in our area, she brings to the table all of the qualities we need for our program to be most successful. We can expect to see incredible things happen under her leadership.”
The 100 Families Alliance is a program that uses a collective impact model to coordinate existing community resources so that families can find stability and pull themselves out of crisis situations. After seeing success in other Arkansas counties, Walker reached out to Restore Hope Arkansas, a Little Rock– based non-profit organization, to bring the 100 Families Alliance to Texarkana. When the program officially launches in March, Miller County will be the fifth county in Arkansas, and Bowie County will be the first county in Texas to partner with Restore Hope on this initiative.
“Data from the 100 Families Alliance in other counties has been incredible,” Walker said. “Families are having their basic needs met. Parents are getting on track and able to reunite with their children in foster care. Men and women are building the skills and confidence they need to find work. As soon as I heard about the program, I knew we had to bring it to Texarkana. My challenge was finding someone who had the experience we needed in both education and business and also be a champion for people and share our passion for the program’s success. We could not have found a more perfect candidate. Kristina is exactly the person we needed.”
For more information, please contact Jenny Walker or Kristina Rivas-Jones at 903-255-7733.