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Two women study computer hardware

A Two-Generation Approach

// April 17, 2018

WFCO Grantee Profile: CPCD…giving children a head start

When you enter the halls at any of the Colorado Springs early childhood education centers of CPCD…giving children a head start (CPCD), you’ll see preschoolers listening to stories, making art, and building train tracks. While they prepare for elementary school, many of their parents are in classrooms preparing for new careers. It’s a two-generation approach to boosting prosperity for Colorado women and their families.

2Gen Career Pathways program

CPCD’s 2Gen Career Pathways Program is a partnership with Pikes Peak Community College. In six to nine months, the program helps the parents, 80 percent of whom live in poverty, gain high-demand job skills and advanced certifications.

Moms in the IT track earn the A+ certification, while those in the early childhood education program work toward a child development associates (CDA) credential. In a new manufacturing track, parents choose between certifications in welding, electronics assembly and soldering, or becoming certified production technicians. By 2025, up to 2 million manufacturing jobs in the U.S. are projected to be unfilled.

CPCD is one of 15 direct service grantees in our WAGES cohort that are building a foundation of economic security for women and their families. Their program provides high-quality childcare, job placement support, and other resources to help women overcome barriers that can prevent economic advancement. Among the single mothers who have obtained child development associates credentials through CPCD, an impressive 100 percent have seen increased wages.

Juliana, who’s currently working toward a CDA, learned about the two-generation program after her daughter enrolled in CPCD’s early childhood program. As she advanced toward a CDA credential, she jumped on the opportunity to become an education assistant at CPCD, boosting her income. “The CDA program opened the doors to getting a job at CPCD,” says Juliana. “What I am learning in the program is not only helping me in the classroom but also with my own children.”

Addressing the needs of caregivers and their children

Support from WFCO helps more moms like Juliana move from promise to prosperity and connects CPCD with other organizations across the state. “Being a part of the WAGES cohort gives us the opportunity to see what other agencies like us are doing to move more families out of poverty, to get ideas and learn, and to share what we’re doing,” says Anne Nelson, CPCD’s two-generation program coordinator.

“CPCD’s two-generation program establishes a model for organizations to simultaneously support mothers in advancing their employment opportunities in growing fields and support their children’s care and healthy development,” says Louise Myrland, vice president of programs at WFCO.

In 2017, WFCO announced that Women’s Funding Network awarded $150,000 to The Foundation over three years to work and learn with three other women’s foundations as the Two Generation Advocacy Network. With the support of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, WFN established the cohort to help break intergenerational cycles of poverty by addressing the needs of caregivers and their children at the same time.

Photo credit: Katy Tartakoff


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