Leading on Opportunity Receives Grant from Annie E. Casey Foundation; Winer Family Foundation

Expanding Opportunities for Young Families Within A Racial Equity Framework

$135,000 grant builds power among young adult parents to envision and create two-generation systems change

Leading on Opportunity Receives Grant from Annie E. Casey Foundation; Winer Family Foundation to Expand Opportunities for Young Families

CHARLOTTE, NC (October 16, 2019) - Leading on Opportunity today announced that it is one of four national sites — along with Miami, Florida; Santa Fe, New Mexico and Austin, Texas — awarded a grant by the Annie E. Casey Foundation to help improve outcomes and close disparity gaps for low-income parents and their children. The Winer Family Foundation provided local philanthropic support to support the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s investment in Charlotte-Mecklenburg.

“Together, we plan to create an intergenerational cycle of opportunity to change outcomes and close disparity gaps for low-income parents and their children. The timing of this grant is ideal because it provides our community an opportunity to leverage momentum and political will to expand the continuum of support for young parent families with a racial-equity frame.” said Leading on Opportunity Executive Director Dr. Stephanie Cooper-Lewter.

Research shows young adult parents need additional support to provide financial stability, nurturance, guidance and support in order to support their children in reaching their full potential. Over the next nine months, Leading on Opportunity, along with community partners and an advisory council of young parents, ages 18-24 years, will develop a strategy and framework to leverage momentum and political will to expand the continuum of support for young parent families in Charlotte-Mecklenburg with children ages 0-3 years.

Ten of Leading on Opportunity’s 2019 Inaugural Opportunity Champions were selected as key stakeholders and core planning partners representing non-profit and government entities including: the City of Charlotte, Mecklenburg County, Central Piedmont Community College, United Way of Central Carolinas, Charlotte Bilingual School, Charlotte Works, Care Ring, Lakeview Neighborhood Alliance, Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont and Winer Family Foundation. Against All Odds Empowerment Center also came to the table as an initial core partner.

“This is an exciting time for us to co-invest with the Annie E. Casey Foundation to ensure healthy child development and resilient families, as Leading on Opportunity takes concrete action alongside our community to determine programmatic, policy and system changes needed most for young families,” said Liz Winer, founder and trustee of the Winer Family Foundation.

Intersecting with all areas within the Leading on Opportunity’s Charlotte-Mecklenburg Opportunity Task Force report, three young adult parent town halls will be held in November 2019. A young adult advisory council will also be formed to work alongside Leading on Opportunity’s planning partners into 2020 to identify practice, policy and systems changes for needed for greater family economic success.

About Leading on Opportunity

Established in 2017, Leading on Opportunity aligns efforts across the Charlotte-Mecklenburg community to ensure every child has an equal chance for social and economic success by taking a systemic approach: addressing the key determinants of early care and education, college and career readiness, and child and family stability, while simultaneously focusing on the cross-cutting factors of segregation and social capital. Visit us online at www.leadingonopportunity.org.

About Winer Family Foundation

The Winer Family Foundation builds capacity by aligning systems to ensure all families with children, prenatal to 5, have the same opportunity to thrive across the Carolinas. For more information visit https://www.wffcharlotte.org.