History

Mountain Crisis Services was created by a small group of concerned citizens who shared their vision for the first time on June 20, 1990. By that autumn, they had established a 40-hour volunteer training program in Mariposa County.  They proceeded to provide counseling, advocacy, and shelter in local motels to domestic violence victims. They continued this work on an unpaid basis for five years.

In the wake of the notorious Simpson murder trial in 1995, the California Department of Health Services provided a start-up grant. The first three salaried employees were hired in September of that year. They purchased a small shelter to protect endangered mothers and their children, and to keep the healthy parts of violence-torn families together until they could establish safe homes of their own.

In 2004, Mountain Crisis Services brought other community agencies and schools to the table to stop domestic violence before it begins. Together they established Project Respect, a program that thrives today, and is widely recognized for its leadership in the field of prevention.

On July 1, 2008, Mountain Crisis Services opened Valley Crisis Center, a sister agency created to fill a void in domestic violence and sexual assault services in Merced County. Valley Crisis Center grew rapidly to meet the needs of Merced’s wide array of diverse populations. Valley Crisis Center soon joined forces in a partnership with UC Merced, the tenth campus of the University of California. Together, the two newly formed institutions developed a groundbreaking program that addresses the previously ignored problem of sexual assault on the college campus.
The strangling economy severed two small Mariposa agencies from their fiscal sponsors in winter of 2011. Mountain Crisis Services, which had previously partnered with each for the benefit our mutual clients, adopted them both. The first, Ethos, describes itself as a revolution of youth that is a catalyst for justice and social change. It is the place Mariposa’s young people turn to for social support, camaraderie, philosophical guidance and skill development. The second, Heritage House, offers drug and alcohol recovery support services that inspire people to redirect their lives. Again because of California’s economic collapse, the State made changes to California’s correctional system by realigning responsibilities for lower level offenders from state to local jurisdictions. During the summer of 2012, Mountain Crisis Services partnered with the Mariposa County Probation Department to establish the Center for Opportunity, Re-entry and Education (CORE), a day reporting center that helps newly released people return to the community.  CORE provides a comprehensive set of approaches to help individuals overcome the personal difficulties that lead them into the court system.  Additionally, this past summer, 2014, MCS partnered with Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Mariposa County, a national, nonprofit organization that focuses on volunteer advocacy for abused and neglected children.

Mountain Crisis Services, has adopted a new organization-wide name, Alliance for Community Transformations, which better reflects and ties together each of our five programs.