Showing the world that transformational change is a reality
CINCINNATI – StriveTogether is a finalist for the 2024 Schwab Foundation Social Innovation Awards. Winners will be announced at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland in January.
The award finalists, drawn from 18 different countries, are tackling social issues ranging from economic mobility and youth empowerment to healthcare and clean energy. “They are showcasing through their systemic approaches that change towards a better future is not only possible – it is already underway,” Schwab stated in announcing the finalists.
“We share this honor with our Cradle to Career Network,” said StriveTogether President and Chief Executive Officer Jennifer Blatz. “Together, we focus upstream to transform the way systems work to support better and more equitable outcomes for every child.”
StriveTogether supports network member communities in building civic infrastructure – a collective accountability for eliminating disparities and creating opportunities. Civic infrastructure ensures every child is supported to thrive through equitable access to education, employment, health care, housing and more. StriveTogether network members focus on improving cradle-to-career outcomes that lead to economic mobility.
Economic mobility data paints a bleak picture: 70% of Americans born in the lowest quintile will never reach the middle class and Black, Latine and Indigenous children are more likely to experience downward mobility than their white peers. Research shows when young people meet key academic milestones, ‘cradle-to-career outcomes,’ they have an increased likelihood of achieving economic mobility.
High quality early learning opportunities allow children to begin kindergarten ready to learn, and those students are consequently more likely to be good readers in third grade. Reading well in third grade is a significant predictor of future success in school. Unfortunately, the inverse is also true: with each milestone missed, students fall further and further behind, and deeply entrenched systemic inequities mean that not all children have access to the same opportunities that allow them to reach these milestones.
“We believe in a world where a child’s potential isn’t dictated by race, ethnicity, zip code or circumstance,” Blatz said. “We know this is possible because we’re seeing systemic change leading to better outcomes for young people across our network. Our model has the potential to achieve equitable outcomes for millions more young people in the years to come.”
StriveTogether is a national network of nearly 70 communities across 29 states and Washington, D.C. working to build a future where a child’s potential is not dictated by race, ethnicity, zip code or circumstance. The organization provides coaching, resources and rigorous approaches to create opportunities and eliminate inequities in education, housing and more. Together, the StriveTogether Cradle to Career Network reaches 14 million youth — including 8 million children of color and one in five children experiencing poverty. For more information about StriveTogether, visit StriveTogether.org.