The Link

Family Support Services

We foster a safe, healthy, and thriving community by linking children, youth, and families with programs and services to address their unique needs.

Carrizo Plains
Santa Margarita

San Simeon


Morro Bay
Los Osos


Paso Robles
San Miguel


Arroyo Grande
Oceano, Nipomo
Grover Beach
Pismo Beach

Link staff, known as Family Advocates, provides services to families that include:

  • Support accessing food, housing, clothing, health care, and parent education
  • Assistance navigating the social services system for mental health services, disability benefits, drug and alcohol recovery, adoption and guardianship support and family reunification
  • Advocacy for students and their families by coordinating with teachers, school counselors, and principals to support academic success
  • Linkages to community partners for domestic violence services, homeless services, transportation, employment resources and much more.

North County Family Advocates


Bessy Hoffman

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 712-5038
Primary Service Areas: Atascadero, Templeton, Creston, Carrizo Plains, Santa Margarita

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Bessy Hoffman has worked in the education industry for over twenty-seven years. Starting in Los Angeles and later moving to Atascadero, she has specialized in bilingual and special education in both school districts. Bessy has received the Golden Oak award, which is the PTA’s highest honor for excellence in working with and providing for the welfare of children in our local community.

Bessy’s constant drive for the welfare and success of all the families that she works with also led to her being named Santa Rosa Academic Academy’s Employee of the Year in 2013. With her exceptional experience in community resources and social services, Bessy constantly strives to provide a secure future for all local and bilingual families. Bessy is also a Parent Educator and Coach and supports parents and caregivers across the Central Coast.

Maria Shira

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 503–9724
Primary Service Areas: Templeton

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Maria joined The Link in 2021. She has 14 years of experience as a bilingual preschool instructor with a background in physiology. Maria was born and raised in Guatemala and moved to Washington to teach and serve as a paraeducator. She also owned a bilingual preschool and volunteered for the ECAP program in Washington helping families with transportation and interpretation.

Marilu Gomez

Paso Robles JUSD Family Advocate Partner

Contact: (805) 769-1200 ext. 23261
Primary Service Area:  Georgia Brown Elementary School, Paso Robles

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Marilu joined The Link in 2021 as part of the First 5 Partnership for Resilient Families project. She serves families with children ages 0 – 5 in Northern San Luis Obispo County.

Mayra Velazquez

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: (805) 503-9409
Primary Service Area:  Paso Robles, San Miguel

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Mayra is a graduate of University of California Santa Cruz. She worked with the Community Action Partnership of San Luis Obispo as a Family Service Advocate and as a Home Base educator. Mayra is passionate about serving the community and is a wonderful addition to The Link team.

Sonia Greene

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 647-3827
Primary Service Areas: Atascadero, Templeton, Creston, Carrizo Plains and Santa Margarita

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Sonia Greene has been at The Link Family Resource Center for over ten years and has had extensive experience working with sexual abuse and domestic violence victims. She is a certified First Aid mental health professional and utilizes her passion to help people in her duties as a family advocate. Sonia is fluent in both Spanish and English and has previously worked for the Atascadero Unified School District as a classroom translator. 

Elena Chavez

First 5 Early Childhood Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 712-6487
Primary Service Areas: Paso Robles, San Miguel, Shandon

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Elena Chavez serves pregnant women and children up to 5 years of age at The Link Family Resource Center in Atascadero and Paso Robles along with The Childcare Development Resource Center in San Luis Obispo.

Carmen Del Real

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 503-9638
Primary Service Areas: Paso Robles, Shandon

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Carmen brings her passion for community services to families at Shandon and Lewis Middle Schools. She joined The Link in 2021 with a desire to provide support to the most vulnerable in our community. Carmen has worked in the Health Care sector as a social service director and brings a wealth of experience to The Link team. With the tools and support she provides, families will increase their opportunity for success and well being.

Coastal & SLO Family Advocates


Hector Santos

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 235-6610
Primary Service Areas: Morro Bay, Los Osos, Baywood

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Arlen Merced

Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 538-8408
Primary Service Areas: Coastal/SLO 

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Arlen was born in Mexico City, Mexico. Her family moved to California when she was seven years old and she grew up in Paso Robles. Arlen enjoys learning, exploring, and staying active. During high school she played tennis and was involved in the community by volunteering in events and non-profit organizations. Arlen developed a passion for events production and decided to pursue her degree in Hospitality, Tourism and Event Management at San Jose State University. Now, she is proud to serve the SLO County community by providing resources and being a guide to those in need.

Danilda Reyes

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 647-9505
Primary Service Areas: Cayucos, Cambria, San Simeon

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Danilda Reyes serves as a Family Advocate for The Coast Unified School District in Cambria. She has experience working with children and youth in behavioral programs and in one on one classroom settings. She was a Teacher at The Dominican Republic with experience in Kindergarten students, Elementary and Middle School Students. Danilda is bilingual in English and Spanish.

South County Family Advocates


Erica Andrade

South County Family Advocate Services Coordinator

Contact: Cell phone (805) 952-3695
Primary Service Areas: Nipomo, Arroyo Grande, Oceano, Grover Beach, Pismo Beach

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Erica Andrade joined The Link Family Resource Center in 2019 as a Family Advocate.  She works at Judkins and Mesa Middle School helping parents of Middle School students connect with resources such parent education, housing assistance, and basic needs such as food and utility bills.

Brenda Gonzalez

Bilingual Family Advocate

Contact: Cell phone (805) 503-9983
Primary Service Areas: San Luis Obispo, Avila Beach

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Brenda joined The Link in 2021. Previously she worked for People’s Self-Help Housing as a Property Manager in the 5 Cities area and as a preschool teacher assistant for Community Action Partnership SLO County in 2016. Her passion for helping people get connected with community resources and navigate the school system inspired her career pivot. Brenda is bilingual and fluent in English and Spanish. She also currently serves as a parent leader English Learner Advisory Committee (ELAC) President in Grover Beach.

Family Advocate Support Team 


Tonya DeRose

North County SAFE Coordinator

Contact: Cell phone (805) 952-4503

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Tonya DeRose joined The Link Family Resource Center in 2016 and has her associate’s degree in human services. A parent and active member of the North San Luis Obispo County community Tonya fosters relationships that build bridges between families and resources. As the Coordinator of SAFE in North County Tonya brings together diverse teams to support children and families when they’re most vulnerable. Tonya works in close collaboration with school staff to support student success through building protective factors, linking to parent education, and referring to partner agencies.

Carrie Collins

Family Advocate Services Director

Contact:  (805) 794-0217

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Carrie Collins serves as the Family Advocate Services Director for the Link Family Resource Center. For the past 8 years, Carrie was a Training and Consulting Specialist with Strategies 2.0 at Children’s Bureau. She provided training and consultation throughout the state to assist organizations and individuals in their work with family strengthening and prevention of child abuse and neglect. Carrie received her Masters Degree in Organizational Leadership from Ashford University, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from the University of Phoenix. Her background includes over 20 years in the Head Start and Migrant Head Start program in Parent Involvement and Leadership, and Staff Career Development and Training. She served two years in AmeriCorps providing pesticide safety training to farm workers throughout the state of Utah. Carrie and her husband share the joy of being parents to 4 grown children, and grandparents to 3 grandsons, with a new grandbaby on the way!

Referral Forms


Link Staff Chart

Visit this chart to find the family advocate who serves your school/region of SLO County

Family Advocate Referral Form

Please fax or email Family Advocate referrals to: (805) 462-8901 or

SAFE Referral Form

Please note that for SAFE referrals, the client must initial for each agency authorized to exchange information (page 3) and sign and date the last page (page 4).
Please fax or email all SAFE referrals to:
Tonya DeRose, North County SAFE Program Coordinator
(805) 462-8901 or

Medi-Cal Outreach Navagation

Medi-Cal benefits outreach and enrollment navigation services are available in Spanish, English and Mixteco.Medi-Cal benefits outreach and enrollment navigation services are available in Spanish, English and Mixteco.

Form 815 (English)

County of San Luis Obispo Multi-Agency Referral and Client Release of Information

Form 815 (Spanish)

County of San Luis Obispo Multi-Agency Referral and Client Release of Information

Nurse Home Visiting Referral

Parent Coach Referral Chart

Parent Coaching Services are offered at no cost to all families living in San Luis Obispo County.

Nurse Home Visiting Referral

Tabla de Referencia de Entrenamiento para Padres

Los servicios de orientación para padres se ofrecen sin costo a todas las familias que viven en el condado de San Luis Obispo.

Community Bulletin


Frequently Asked Questions


How do I refer a family to The Link?

Please download and complete The Link Advocate Referral Form

Submit the completed form to Family Advocate Services Director Carrie Collins at or fax to (805) 462-8901

    Where is The Link Family Resource Center located?

    Please visit us at one of our two North County Family Resource Centers.

    Atascadero Family Resource Center
    4507 Del Rio Ave. Building #1 Atascadero, CA 93422
    Monday – Friday, 9am – 4pm (805) 794-0217

    Paso Robles Family Resource Center
    1802 Chestnut Street Paso Robles, CA 93446 (805) 794-0217

    What is The Link Family Resource Center mission?

    Our Mission
    We foster a safe, healthy, and thriving community by linking children, youth, and families with programs and services to address their unique needs.
    Our Vision
    We envision a thriving community where children, youth, and families have the power and resources to live healthy, safe, and productive lives.
    Our Values
    The Link values strengths-based, empowerment-focused, community-driven collaboration, developed through mutual respect, compassion, and integrity.

    Is The Link a nonprofit organization?

    The Link received 501(c)(3) status in the spring of 2004. Since then, the organization has expanded from a small project of the Atascadero Youth Task Force into a thriving system of Family Resource Centers, family advocates, and community resource specialists upon which the community has come to deeply rely.

    The Link was created in 1998 as a project of the Atascadero Youth Task Force; developed in order to identify available services, assist youth and families to connect with needed services, and to create services to support families. Since then, The Link has expanded from its original office location in Atascadero to two Family Resource Centers with service outreach spanning across the North SLO County towns of Atascadero, Cambria, Shandon, San Miguel, Creston, Cayucos, Santa Margarita, San Simeon, Paso Robles, Los Osos, Morro Bay, and Templeton, encompassing a community of approximately 103,000 residents. We additionally serve the South San Luis Obispo towns of Pismo Beach and Arroyo Grande. Today, we are a community leader in child welfare and education services and aim to keep families united while engaging in child abuse prevention.



    Please fill out the form below. We look forward to connecting with you!

    How did you hear about us?

    What best describes you?

    The family needs include (please check all that apply):

    What can we help with?

    What can we help with?

    Preferred contact method

    Location: Del Rio Continuation High School
    Address: 4507 Del Rio Ave Bldg. #1, Atascadero, CA 93422
    Hours: Open: 9:00AM to 5:00PM M-F
    Office Phone: (805) 466-5404
    Bilingual Family Advocate Services Director: (805) 794-0217


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    Administrative Staff


    Lisa Fraser

    Executive Director

    Contact: Office (805) 466-5404

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    Since 2001, Lisa Fraser has distinguished herself through her vision to create and grow nine major programs, each designed to strengthen families and stop the cycle of child abuse. She serves as Board President of Alpha Pregnancy and Parenting Support and is a preeminent leader in SLO County’s human service field. Lisa played an integral role in the establishment of Martha’s Place, an assessment center for at-risk children.

    While her legacy has had a tremendous impact on our SLO County community, Lisa’s talents and her commitment to families are recognized on a regional and state level. She provided coordination for the Coastal Tri-Counties Child Abuse Prevention Coalition, established the Regional Child Death Review Team for Santa Barbara, Ventura, and San Luis Obispo counties and served on the California State Child Death Review Council. Lisa also participated in developing the California Family Support Standards, part of an ongoing initiative to define and promote quality in the field of family strengthening.

    Lisa earned a B.S. Degree and a Single-Subject Teaching Credential at Cal Poly. She has also earned professional certifications including California Standards for Family Strengthening and Support certification, California Mandated Reporter of Suspected Child Abuse certification, non-Profit Development Officer Program certification, and a certificate in Facilitative Leadership-Interaction Institute for Social Change.

    Lisa loves the “community spirit” of the Central Coast where she and Larry, her husband of 31 years, have raised two children, Brooke, and Dylan. She is an avid tennis player and active in social organizations and the arts.

    Heather Leger

    Program Data Specialist

    Contact: Office (805) 466-5404

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    Heather Leger is the Program Data Specialist for the Link Family Resource Center. She graduated from Cal Poly with a B.S. in Business Management, and has experience working in higher education administration.

    Isabel (Cris) Castañeda

    Accounting Assistant

    Contact: Cell phone (805) 466–5404

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    Isabel (Criss) joined The Link in January 2021 and serves families from Flamson Middle School (Paso Robles) and Lillian Larsen Middle School (San Miguel). She got her Accounting Degree in Mexico, but she found her real passion in the Education area, she was a Teacher in Mexico with experience in Kindergarten and Elementary Students. She saw that there was a way to help the little ones and their families. In 2005, she migrated to Paso Robles where she joined the Migrant Education Program, Region 18, where her duties included: outreach, recruitment, coordination of health and support services, and parent engagement activities. Cris is bilingual in English and Spanish.

    Karolyn Kinsey

    Fiscal Manager

    Contact: Office (805) 466-5404

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    Joshua Bustamante

    Accounting Manager

    Contact: Office (805) 703-3189

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    Joshua Bustamante is the Accounting Manager for the Link Resource Center. He grew up attending schools in the Paso Robles School District and has a strong connection to the community. Josh graduated from California State University, Chico with a B.S. in Management and Entrepreneurship, and was a member of the Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity at Chico State. He is driven by using his area of study to uplift the community he grew up in. Josh is bilingual in English and Spanish.

    Board of Directors

    Our Directors support The Link’s program excellence and fiscal integrity.

    Current Board List:

    President: Kathy Hannemann, Retired School Administrator, AUSD

    Treasurer: Pres Meyers, Retired Administrator

    Secretary: Bob Pittenger, Community Member

    Debbie Arnold, 5th District Supervisor, SLO County

    Jessica Lloyd, Principal, Atascadero Middle School, AUSD

    Christina Latner, Public Policy Specialist, Cal Poly University

    Jeff Wilshsusen, City of Atascadero Police Department

    Board of Directors meetings take place virtually on the 4th Tuesday of the month from 4 – 5:30pm. For more information please call 805-466-5404.