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  • Human Services

    Jeffco Prosperity Project Named to National Network to Disrupt Poverty for Children and Parents

    Aspen Institute Ascend Network $50,000 Grant for Funding

    (Jefferson County, CO) – Jeffco Prosperity Project was announced today as a member of the Aspen Institute Ascend Network,External Link Icon a new network of leading organizations using two-generation approaches to disrupt poverty and create economic mobility for families. Jeffco Prosperity Project will receive a $50,000 grant for a one-year period.

    The Jeffco Prosperity Project is a cross-agency adoption of a shared vision. That vision is a pilot program designed to help suburban at-risk families develop economic self-sufficiency, support positive child development, and break generational cycles of poverty in Jefferson County utilizing a two-generation model. JPP is a community collaboration between Jefferson County Department of Human Services, Jefferson County Head Start, The Action Center, the Jefferson Foundation and the school district.

    Jeffco Prosperity Project is one of the initial 50+ organizations, selected from more than 24 states that represent the leading edge of a national movement around two-generation approaches. Two-generation approaches External Link Icon look at the whole family’s needs and provide opportunities for children and their parents together.

    “These leaders are fueling change for America’s families,” said Walter Isaacson, president and CEO of the Aspen Institute. “As we reflect on the 50th anniversary of the ‘War on Poverty,’ the Aspen Institute is proud to invest in transformational ideas to break the cycle of intergenerational poverty.”

    Poverty is a growing issue in Denver’s suburban communities. Enrollment data in Jeffco Public Schools reflects this with the percentage of students needing the free and reduced lunch program jumping from 24% to 34% in the last four years. Jeffco Prosperity Project is serving families who make less than 130% of poverty, or about $28,000 annually for a family of four.

    “Our goal is to create thriving, self-sufficient families earning livable wages that will help lift them out of generational poverty and empower them to contribute to community well-being,” said Lynn Johnson, Executive Director, Jefferson County Department of Human Services.

    More about Jeffco Prosperity Project:

    Jeffco Prosperity Project (JPP) is a collaboration of community, school, business and county partners working together to help Jefferson County families break the cycle of generational poverty. JPP believes success for families in poverty can only be achieved with a two-generation approach that includes family-driven education, economic support and social capital. Over time, JPP will reduce poverty in Jefferson County as we work to ensure children from low-income homes graduate on time, and have access to post-secondary opportunities. Parents will have the supports they need to become self-sufficient. For more information contact Jefferson County Head Start at 720-497-7900.

    Kris Kinzli
    Marketing and Communications Manager

    April 29, 2014

    Last Updated: 4-29-2014