The Cincinnati Child Poverty Collaborative, supported by United Way of Greater Cincinnati, marked a major milestone with the debut of the One to One Learning Collaborative at a special launch meeting on Tuesday, July 18 at the American Red Cross Conference Center.
One to One refers to the strategy of engaging community agencies in direct and ongoing support of families throughout their journey out of poverty. It is the first of five commitments co-designed with community leaders and those who have lived in poverty.
The overall process will help agencies collectively learn the best ways to address the barriers that sidetrack a family on the path out of poverty – barriers such as reliable childcare, safe and affordable housing, violence, transportation, family obligations, advanced job skills, and more. These barriers are the ongoing focus of work being done by the Child Poverty Collaborative and United Way.
“It’s great that the Child Poverty Collaborative is reaching out to families in the community to help design a system that addresses issues affecting us and our children,” said Jazz Overton, who was part of the team of stakeholders who designed the One to One Learning Collaborative approach. “We need to start now to create a better environment, not only for us, but for our children so the cycle of poverty doesn’t continue.”
The goal is to engage 500 families with One to One partner agencies in the first year. For the first time, agencies serving these families will collect and share a common set of data to track the progress of families.
“In our Learning Networks with patients, families, peer institutions, and other partners, we have seen over and over how rallying around shared goals and collecting common data creates the foundation for trust and progress,” said Michael Fisher, CEO of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and a Co-Chair of the Child Poverty Collaborative. “When organizations and other stakeholders share their insights and results with each other, both good and not so good, they are able to learn together and accelerate and sustain what works.”
Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley, also Co-Chair said, “We know that there is no one size fits all when it comes to supporting families in their journey out of poverty, but this ambitious undertaking creates the opportunity to work individually with families throughout their journey and at the same time bring into focus the best strategies to remove barriers and clear the path to self-sufficiency.”
The launch meeting was designed for agencies interested in being part of the learning collaborative. Members will be selected from a formal application process set to wrap at the end of the summer.
“I cannot overstate what a game changer it will be to have so many organizations on the same page, working to rapidly design and test new ways to support families,” said Lynn Marmer, Executive Director of the Child Poverty Collaborative. “The only way we are going to move 5,000 families out of poverty is to learn from each other, zero in on winning strategies, and all work together to scale and spread what works.”
United Way of Greater Cincinnati is a founding partner of the Child Poverty Collaborative and provides major support to the initiative. In late 2015, business, community, religious, nonprofit, government leaders and United Way joined together to launch the Child Poverty Collaborative, aiming to significantly reduce child poverty in Hamilton County.