How to measure systems to hold them accountable

Communities across the country are building civic infrastructure to get better, more equitable results for kids. Like physical infrastructure, civic infrastructure connects key elements of a community, including people, ideas and resources. It focuses on outcomes rather than programs and uses data to improve. At StriveTogether, we’ve learned a lot about building effective civic infrastructure…

A group of seven girls smile at the camera. Three of them are sitting on a bench and four are standing behind the bench.

Changing systems from cradle to career in Marin County 

  In Marin County, California, more than 100 community, organizational, philanthropic and governmental leaders are changing systems to ensure every child in the county achieves their full potential. This work is facilitated by StriveTogether Cradle to Career Network member Marin Promise Partnership.    In a recent assessment, Marin Promise Partnership earned the Systems Change designation along…

Taking up change: Public sector adoption of civic infrastructure

The StriveTogether Cradle to Career Network reaches nearly one in seven young people aged 0–24 in this country. To put those young people on a path to economic mobility, network member communities are building what’s called civic infrastructure. Like physical infrastructure — roads, bridges, electrical grids — civic infrastructure creates the connections a community needs…

Connection, data, power and courage: Lessons from a gathering of 500 changemakers

At the 2022 Cradle to Career Network Convening last month, we gathered with changemakers, community leaders, youth, experts, government leaders and more to explore how we can unite around our shared vision and get to transformational change for kids across the country. The StriveTogether Cradle to Career Network already reaches one in seven young people…

A group of young students smiling up at the camera

Transforming systems in Salt Lake City for lasting change

  When we transform systems, we open pathways for youth to thrive. Systems transform when changes are embedded in a community and its institutions, creating permanent shifts to policies, practices, resources and power structures. The way a community works together leads to better outcomes for kids, especially for Black, Indigenous, Latine and Asian youth and…

Investing in what works for kids: Shifting resources for civic infrastructure

In an ideal community, resources would flow to support kids. Public and private funders would invest in what’s working to get better and more equitable outcomes. Instead of competing for dollars, organizations could work together to make sure that each has what they need to fulfill their mission and contribute to the community’s shared vision.…

How backbone organizations build civic infrastructure for stronger communities

“So, what do you do?” We’ve all heard this question. Sometimes, our answers are met with nods of recognition; other times, helping someone understand our role requires more explanation. People working to develop their community’s civic infrastructure might need to share a lot of extra explanation. Civic infrastructure isn’t something we can see or touch.…

Civic infrastructure paves the way to economic mobility

For more than a decade, communities across the country have been building something more than roads and bridges. They’ve been building a different type of infrastructure: civic infrastructure, which connects people, ideas and resources to make communities stronger. Through civic infrastructure, organizations collaborate with community members, schools, governments, nonprofits, businesses, health care organizations and more. Together,…