Every month, America Forward is highlighting a few examples of the vital work being done by our Coalition members to support students, families, educators, workers, elected leaders, advocates, and communities across the country. If your organization has resources, an announcement, or a story that you would like to see included, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
As communities across the country continue to grapple with converging public health and economic crises, it is as important as ever to make sure every family has access to stable housing and support services. To help, Pillars provides access to shelters and mental health supports, a resource center, affordable homes and rental units, as well as free, bi-monthly virtual meetings, Conversations Over Coffee, that bring together key leaders and stakeholders and create a space to discuss and develop solutions to our most pressing housing challenges.
The First 72+
The First 72+ works to provide people who have previously been incarcerated with the holistic, wraparound services necessary to support the re-entry process and end cycles of incarceration. To this end, their Re-entry Resources page provides critical information, including guides to local free and low-cost services, legal and expungement clinics, and additional reentry resources with listings for “housing, employment, education, legal aid/advocacy, mental health, nutrition assistance, and substance abuse counseling.”
P.S. 305’s approach to their school system is grounded in and inspired by a bold vision for their students, families, and educators: “that Miami could provide every one of its children with a high-quality public education that honors student identity, achieves equity, redefines excellence, and unleashes empowerment.” To that end, they offer critical resources to support their communities, including a vision guide for the future of education in Miami; a guide to understanding the Miami-Dade County Public Schools Board; information on the Florida grading system; a guide for families for choosing a school; and more.
National Math + Science Initiative
The National Math + Science Initiative works to “advance STEM education to ensure all students, especially those furthest from opportunity, thrive and reach their highest potential as problem solvers and lifelong learners who pursue their passions and tackle the world’s toughest challenges.” To support this effort, they offer key resources for students, families, and educators, including free curriculum assets, classroom lessons, educator resources, educational videos, and more. Access their full resource page here.
The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare the deep inequities and shortcomings in our healthcare systems. Now, more than ever, families and communities need support to close these gaps and improve health outcomes. To help do so, Maycomb Capital recently partnered with national nonprofit Benefits Data Trust (BDT) to “catalyze healthcare investments from insurers in public benefits access,” improve health outcomes, and reduce the cost of care. Read more about the partnership here.
Project QUEST provides personalized workforce training programs and wraparound supports to those seeking employment in San Antonio, Texas, with the goal of helping their community access sustainable job and career opportunities – and according to a recent study conducted by the Economic Mobility Corporation (Mobility), they’ve succeeded. The study aimed to “assess [QUEST’s] impacts on credential attainment and earnings among individuals pursuing health-care careers,” and found significant increases in earnings and postsecondary credential attainment for QUEST participants, as well as a clear return on investment for the program. The full report can be read here.
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